Like other major cities in India, Kochi is a shopper's delight with textiles, readymade garments, jewellery, handicrafts, antiques as well as spices. Kochi city has a wide range of shops to cater to the needs of the tourists. With factory outlets opening up in the city, fancy, ready to wear brands are available at reasonable prices for the fashion conscious Kochinites.
The major shopping centers are located on the M.G road, Broadway and Marine Drive in the mainland Ernakulam and Jew Town in Mattancherry. Kadavanthara, half a km east of downtown Kochi and the adjacent Vytilla Junction is also fast developing into shopping centres in their own right.
The Mahatma Gandhi Road (M.G road) earlier known as the Seventy-feet Road, branches off from Banerji Road in its north end right up to Thevara Junction down south covering approximately four kilometers. M.G. Road is today the city's main commercial centre housing retail shops selling all kind of goods such as textiles, ready made garments, jewellery, toys, home furnishing, handicrafts, decorative items etc. Outlets of International Ready to Wear brands such as Van Heusen, Arrow, Lee, Bennetton, Allen Solly, Louis Philippe and leading Indian brands such as Park Avenue are located on this road. Raymonds and Only Vimal are good places to buy suit lengths. For casuals, Graffiti at Hotel Abad Plaza is a good option with reasonable prices. For large collection of readymades and textiles for the whole family including sarees, salwars etc visit Seematti, at the northern end, Jayalakshmi and Parthas near Jos Junction on the MG road.
M.G. Road also has some excellent jewellery shops selling both traditional, ethnic and modern jewellery. Allapattu House, Alukkas, Josco and Bhima here are some of the largest showrooms. Bata, Boots and Woodlands on M.G. road and Mesco's in Jos junction are good places to buy shoes. The Kerala State Handicrafts Development Corporations Showroom Kairali and Kathais near Jos Junction and Khadi Bhavan, have excellent collection of handicrafts and Khadi products including pure Khadi cotton and silk, Kolhapuri Chappals etc. respectively. Convent Road, branching westwards from the MG road, has a growing number of exclusive boutiques and outlets for the trendy and brand-conscious. The Esplanade building in the convent junction has showrooms selling ready to wear International brands. Besides the shopping malls, MG road has a number of hotels and restaurants and Cinema halls for entertainment
The Marine Drive or the Shanmugham road on its left side has the lively GCDA commercial complex and the Pioneer Towers along the water front, which houses a variety of showrooms selling a range of wares from perfumes, watches, bags & suitcases, music cassettes and CDs, textiles to refrigerators, many business establishments and several fast food cafes and restaurants. The Penta Menaka complex on the right side of Shanmugham Road, also has fast food cafes and restaurants and a variety of dutyfree shops selling mainly electronic items and mobile phones. On the eastern side, the Penta Menaka complex opens out to Broadway. The shops in these complexes usually open at 10 am and close around 8 pm on weekdays and remains closed on Sundays.
Broadway, despite its name is a narrow road lined with shops running parallel to the Marine Drive. This was the city's busiest commercial centre in the yesteryears. Even now Broadway is always busy and the best buys include clothes and spices.
The Northern end of Broadway is the Ernakulam Main Market selling fresh vegetables, fruits, fish, meat.
Kadavanthara & Vytilla
Kadavanthara junction half a km east of downtown Kochi and the adjacent Vytilla Junction is fast developing into shopping centres in their own right. The GCDA (Greater Cochin Development Authority) and Rajiv Gandi Indoor stadium, the second largest of its kind in India is located in Kadavanthara. Kadavanthara has a number of shopping malls and showrooms including Varkeys, The big Graffiti etc. Vytilla has its own shopping malls with V-Mart supermarket and Kemco selling branded clothes, luggage, leather bags and belts etc including international and local brands and Wardrobe with casuals for youngsters. Kemco and Wardrobe are seconds sale outlets which offers designer ware and branded clothes at reasonable prices. Other such outlets include Raymond Seconds and Priceless.
The area around the Synagogue in Mattancherry, is a major centre of spice trade and curio shops.