The city of Mysore is synonymous with Sandalwood and you get the best of Sandalwoods and its products here. However, you have to be very cautious while making a purchase.
Any kind of unauthorized sales and purchase of sandalwood is illegal and is a punishable offence that will lead imprisonment. There are also chances that you will be cheated with fake sandalwoods.
When I left to Mysore for Dasara 2019, my friends requested that I buy some sandalwoods for them. The only sandalwood shop that came in my mind was the State Government operated Cauvery Emporium in Sayyaji Road opposite to K R Hospital.
This precious sandalwood may be legally available elsewhere but buying it in Mysore is a different thing. When I entered the shop, I noticed the board:
There are only three shops in Mysore operated in by the State Government:
- Sayyaji Rao Road, opposite to K R Hospital
- Inside the Palace Premises
- Inside the Zoo Premises
However, you may find several shops with the name “Cauvery or Kaveri” prefixed with other names. These shops are not operated by State Government and you have to be very careful while making a purchase here. There are chances that you will get cheated so it is prudent to be careful.
As stated above, there are two more shops, each in Mysore Palace and Zoo. I would rather prefer the Cauvery Emporium in Sayyaji road for more practical reasons like ease of parking and quick shopping.
Photography is prohibited inside the emporium but the staffs allowed me to snap some photos using my phone. I told them I wanted to show my friend what I was buying for him and I did.
- 1 gram = Rs. 31
- 100 grams = Rs 3100
- 1KG = Rs 31000
A gram of original Sandalwood costs Rs. 31 and for 100 grams it cost Rs. 3100 ($43.66 USD). I purchased two pieces of sandalwood that weighed about 50 grams for Rs. 1550/-. The woods were unevenly cut, as you see in the photo.
I made some other purchases also like the Fragrance Sachets with different flavors like the Jasmine, Lavender and of course the Sandalwood. A pack of 5 sachets costs Rs. 120/- (slightly varies for different flavors). These sachets can be kept inside the wardrobes, suitcases, vanity bags and even cars (the fragrance is bit stronger). A single sachet that costs Rs. 24 and may last for a month which is far cheaper than regular car perfume.
This State run Cauvery Emporium has a lot of items for sale and is the best place to shop for souvenirs. I was flabbergasted after seeing the wooden carvings of life size elephants, a rosewood dining table with Mysore Palace engraved in it and so many other things all done with precious woods. So when you are in Mysore next time, complete your shopping experience at the Cauvery Emporium.