ABOUT SADDAR TOWN KARACHI
If there’s one area in Karachi that’s reminiscent of the colonial era, it’s Saddar. Situated in the heart of the city, its architecture comprises many buildings that were designed and built by British architects in the 19th century. The word “Saddar” means “head” or “centre” of an organization or a group of people.
The name Saddar Town, therefore, befits the neighbourhood as it’s the commercial hub of Karachi.
The town has several renowned and some of the oldest areas of Karachi such as Kharadar, Meethadar, Jodia Bazar, Bolton Market, and Nanakwara. In fact, the history of Kharadar (Salty Gate) and Mithadar (Sweet Gate) dates back to pre-colonial times. These two places have been named after two gates that were built in 1792. Sweet Gate opened towards the Lyari River and Salty Gate opened towards the Arabian Sea. Both the gates were dismantled later by the British.
Many examples of colonial architecture are present in the area such as:
- Frere Hall
- Karachi Grammar School
- Empress Market
- Sindh Club
- St. Andrews Church
AT A GLANCE
- Many beautiful colonial-era structures
- The main business district of the city
- Home to some of the best schools and colleges in the city
- Near the Central Railway Station
- Karachi Port and Clifton — a stone’s throw
- Regional Passport Office
FACILITIES, SCHOOLS AND HEALTHCARE
Public Transport in Saddar Town Karachi
Due to the busy nature of the area, public transport is readily available. However, since ride-hailing services like Uber, Careem and Bykea have been introduced, commuting to and from Saddar Town has become even more convenient for the public. Other than that, there are local rickshaws and taxis which are available at various bus and taxi stops like Metro Saddar Stop and Al Madina Bus Stop. Saddar Town connects with the rest of the city through various public buses and coaches. Some of the buses which navigate through Saddar Town are 4-M, 11-A, 11-E, 11-D, 17-H, 17-I. 17-K, 1-L, 2-K, 4-B, 4-C, 4-G, 4-L, 6-B, C, and W-3. People can pick any of the mentioned buses from Metro Saddar Bus Stop, Al Madina Bus Stop, Frere Market Bus Stop, Tower Bus Stop, Haji Camp and Sultanabad Bus Stop.
Apart from the local buses, there are multiple bus stations that provide intercity services via private buses and coaches in Saddar Town. The most popular ones are:
- Daewoo Bus Service Station
- Faisal Movers Bus Service Station
- Blue Lines Luxury Coach Service Bus Stop
Markets in Saddar Town Karachi
Saddar Town is the main business area of Karachi. Naturally, there’s an abundance of shopping centers and markets. The most popular market, which is also the oldest in the city, is the Empress Market. It is one of the creations of colonial architecture that still mesmerizes with its beautiful structure, after all these years. It also has a pet market where you can find different breeds of animals and birds. There is a large local market for selling and purchasing of new and used cell phones and their accessories which is known as ‘Mobile Market of Saddar.’ Then there are a plethora of bazaars where you can buy unstitched cloth as well as a variety of clothing for men and women. One of them is ‘Zainab Market’ which is the most popular among Karachiites. Other notable spots in the area are Regal Market, Cooperative Market, Leather Market, Electronic Market, and Bohri Bazar. There is a famous market for videocassettes, DVDs and other media equipment called ‘Rainbow Centre.’
Mosques, Temples, and Churches in Saddar Town Karachi
There are several mosques in the old areas of Saddar Town. One of the most famous mosques in the area is Taheri Masjid, which is a place of worship for the Dawoodi Bohra Muslim community. Then there is Jamia Masjid-e-Khizra, which is also a notable mosque of the town. Residents can also visit Jamia Masjid Makki, Aqsa Masjid, Jama Masjid Salih Sadar, Masjid Ahl-e-Hadees, Minara Masjid, Kutchi Memon Masjid, Jamia Masjid Millia, Jama Mosque Dar us Salam and Qadri Masjid.
A few temples and churches are also present in Saddar Town. HJ Behrana Dar-e-Meher, one of the largest Fire Temples (places of worship for the Parsi community) in Karachi is located near Daud Pota Road. Moreover, there’s a renowned church located near Zaibunnisa Street that’s known as St. Andrew's Church. Other churches in the area include Saint Patrick's Cathedral, Holy Trinity Cathedral, and St. Lawrence's Church. Apart from that, there are also a few temples such as Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Panchmukhi Hanuman Temple, and Devi Mata Temple.
Schools, Colleges, And Universities in Saddar Town Karachi
Saddar Town has a number of well-reputed schools that have been fostering academic learning for many years. Some of the well-known schools in the area which offer both Matriculation and O-levels/A-levels are:
- St. Patrick’s Girls’ High School
- Bai Virbaiji Soparivala Parsi High School (BVS)
- Karachi Grammar School
- The Mama Parsi Girls’ Secondary School
- St. Joseph's Convent School
- Habib Girls’ School
- Army Public School
Other schools are Husamiyah School, Rose Petal School (AKU-EB), Nasra School Main Campus, Guard Public School, Hyderi Public School, and Gerald's Academy School.
It’s an indisputable fact that Saddar is home to the best higher education institutions in Karachi. St. Joseph’s College for Women, D. J. Sindh Government Science College, Sindh Muslim Government Arts and Commerce College, Government College of Commerce & Economics, and Sindh Muslim Law College are important names in this regard. There is one notable institute for music and arts located in Saddar called ‘National Academy of Performing Arts’ aka NAPA.
There are few top ranking institutes in the town which provide professional degrees in business, medicine, and arts such as:
- Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS)
- Institute of Business Administration (IBA) city campus
- Arts Council Institute of Arts & Crafts (ACIAC)
Banks in Saddar Town Karachi
For the convenience of the people living in Saddar Town, many branches of major banks are present in the area. Almost all of these banks offer ATM services, along with the functional offices. There’s JS bank Ltd and Faysal Bank in Gazdarabad and Advans Pakistan Microfinance Bank Ltd, Soneri Bank and Summit Bank on Zaibunnisa Street. To the west of Empress Market, you can find Muslim Commercial Bank (MCB) Limited, Sindh Bank, Meezan Bank, and United Bank. Habib Bank Ltd (HBL) has at least two branches in the area: one is near Preedy Street and the other is on Mansfield Street. National Bank of Pakistan, a state-owned commercial bank, has several branches in Saddar.
Clinics and Hospitals in Saddar Town Karachi
There are many hospitals and clinics in Saddar Town, which is quite convenient for residents as they don’t have to travel long distances to, let’s say, get a routine check-up. There are some popular hospitals near the town that provide extensive care and prompt service to the patients. Some of the well-reputed hospitals are:
- OMI (Orthopaedic & Medical Institute)
- Neurospinal & Cancer Care Institute (NCCI HOSPITAL)
- Hamdard University Hospital in Taj Complex
- 7-Days Hospital
- Civil Hospital
- Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT)
OMI Hospital is located on Depot Lines M.A. Jinnah Road and it is one of the best hospitals in the city. It provides services in a range of departments like cardiology, obstetrics, radiology, orthopedics, general surgery, pediatrics, urology, gastroenterology, and nephrology. ICU and ER are also available. Another renowned hospital is Civil Hospital that is also a landmark of M.A. Jinnah Road. Then there is the Neurospinal & Cancer Institute (NCCI) that is devoted to cancer patients. It offers numerous services like Gamma Knife, Synergy-S, PET CT, MRI, CT SCAN, Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), EEG, etc. Another prominent and well-known hospital near the town is Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT), which is the only institute that offers kidney transplantation in Karachi. It provides services like dialysis and kidney transplantation and ER, among others.
Moreover, there are other established hospitals in close proximity to Saddar Town which include Hamdard University Hospital, Sindh Institute of Skin Diseases, JJ Hospital, Parsi General Hospital, ISM Hospital, and Burhani Hospital. There is a special veterinary care hospital for pets located in the area known as ‘RC Veterinary Hospital’.
PROPERTIES IN SADDAR TOWN KARACHI
Sales Price Trends in Saddar Town Karachi
Being one of the most densely populated areas of the city, Saddar Town has many properties like flats, houses, and plots up for sale. Please note prices are subject to change.
Houses for Sale in Saddar Town Karachi
Despite the fact it is a well-established area with a population of over 36,000 people, according to the 2017 Census, you can still find some houses for sale in Saddar. The price of 40 sq. yd. house for sale in Saddar Town area starts from PKR 22 lakh and goes up to PKR 35 lakh. A 62 sq. yd. house for sale has a price range of PKR 58 lakh to PKR 65 lakh. Moreover, the average buying price of 82 sq. yard house is around PKR 85 lakh.
Flats for Sale in Saddar Town Karachi
There is a wide range of apartments available for sale in the historic town. In fact, if you’re lucky, then you might be able to get a unit in one of the old buildings. The average price for a 1-bedroom apartment for sale in Saddar Town is around PKR 20.5 lakh. Apart from that, the price of 2-bedroom flats for sale in Saddar Town starts from PKR 20 lakh and goes up to PKR 1.61 crore. And a price range of a 3-bedroom apartment for sale is PKR 17 lakh to PKR 2.75 crore.
Rent Price Trends in Saddar Town Karachi
Rental prices for residential units depend upon several factors: whether the house or flat is furnished or not, the pin location, availability of transport, and the distance from nearby markets.
Flats for Rent in Saddar Town Karachi
If an entire house is out-of-budget for you, check out flats in Saddar Town for rent. A 2-bedroom unfurnished apartment in Saddar Town starts from PKR 8 thousand per month and can go up to PKR 38 thousand per month. A 3-bedroom apartment for rent is available from PKR 30 thousand to PKR 60 thousand per month.
Saddar Town is considered to be the hub of offices and markets and that is why investors are keen on buying shops and offices in the area. Commercial properties in Saddar Town are available in multiple covered areas.
One of the most popular areas to buy shops in Saddar Town is Jodia Bazar. It is one of the oldest marketplaces in the city. You can easily buy a 10 sq. yd. shop in Jodia Bazar, Saddar Town, for around PKR 40 lakh. You can also check out the main Saddar area, in case you’re looking for a similar set-up. Depending on the size of the unit, a shop in Saddar can cost you anywhere between PKR 40 lakh and PKR 3 crore.
Offices for sale in Saddar Town are mostly available in the main commercial centre, comprising areas like Bohri Bazar, Preedy Quarters, Urdu Bazar and Lucky Star. Prices, of course, depend on the location of the unit, along with a number of other factors like furnishing and nearby amenities. For example, you can get a 26 sq. yd. under construction office in the commercial area of Saddar Auto Parts Market for PKR 42 lakh, whereas a 148 sq. yd furnished office in Panorama Centre, near Atrium Mall, can cost around PKR 1 crore.
According to the buying trends, the main Saddar area outranks other areas, capturing over 50% of commercial properties, while Jodia Bazar, Kharadar, Shireen Jinnah Colony and Gulshan-e-Sikandarabad are second, third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
You can also rent commercial properties in Saddar Town.
In the main Saddar area, 5 to 12 sq. yd. shops have an average rent of PKR 10 thousand per month, depending on the exact location of the unit. There are some shops up for rent in Kharadar as well, however, prices in this area are higher, compared to Saddar. For instance, you might have to pay around PKR 1 lakh for a 28 sq. yd. shop in Jilani Centre.
Rental trends of commercial properties in Saddar Town suggest that Main Saddar is the most preferred choice closely followed by Jodia Bazar, which comes in second. Kharadar, Ratan Talao, and Nanak Wara are also relatively popular.
Most Popular Areas in Saddar Town Karachi
The graph above illustrates the most popular areas to buy properties in Saddar Town, Karachi. It shows people are interested in buying property in the main Saddar area. Kharadar comes in second. Gazadarabad, West Garden and Jodia Bazar are also quite in-demand in this regard.
Rental trends for properties in Saddar Town Karachi show the main Saddar area is also the preferred choice among tenants. Gazdarabad and Kharadar are second and third, respectively, followed by West Garden and Jodia Bazar.
SHOPPING, RESTAURANTS, AND BAKERIES
Malls in Saddar Town Karachi
Most of the malls in Saddar Town are not quite as upscale as regular retail malls. You’ll find fewer amenities in these places, however, there’ll be incredible discounts. If you’re shopping on a budget, then you should definitely visit Madina City Mall and The Centre Shopping Mall, both of which are located near Abdullah Haroon Road. The most popular spot in the area is Atrium Mall. It has shops of several international and local brands as well as multiplex cinemas, which were the first to bring 3D movies to Pakistan. You can also enjoy a sumptuous meal in Atrium’s food court; from spicy golgappas and bhelpurri to juicy beef burgers and delicious frozen yogurt — you can find it all under one roof. Gul Plaza, which is famous for its crockery and garment stores, is located near M.A. Jinnah Road in Gazdarabad.
Restaurants And Bakeries in Saddar Town Karachi
The cafes and restaurants in Saddar Town serve a wide range of fare, from desi cuisine to Chinese, Italian and more. These places are especially a blessing for the people who have their offices in the area. Chullu Kabab Sistani is arguably the most popular restaurant in Saddar Town. Its specialty is chullu (or chelo) kabab; it is an Iranian dish consisting of vegetables and seekh kababs, fried in butter, which is served on a platter. Then there is KBC Restaurant, which is perfect for you if you’re into fast food. Other famous restaurants in the area are Café Darakshan, Zahid Nehari, Nadia Café, Italiano Pizza, Al Harmain Restaurant, Rex Restaurant, and Taj Restaurant & Bar B Q. Moreover. If you’re visiting Atrium Mall, then you can dine at:
- Pizza Hut
- Pizza and Pasta Co
- China Grill
- Burger King
There is an old and popular bakery located in Saddar Town called ‘United Bakery’. It is famous among locals mainly for its delicious patties and lemon rolls. Saddar is famous for bakeries that sell hot cross buns and Easter eggs. Misquita Bakery, near CIA Centre, is worth mentioning here. Crispo Bakery and Bread Centre are also quite famous for baked items in the area. There are many nimco and dry fruits shops present in the area.
OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES, FITNESS, AND BEAUTY
Sports Facilities and Fitness Centres in Saddar Town Karachi
Health conscious people will definitely love living here as there are a number of health clubs and gyms in Saddar Town. There is Chain of Flex Gym, YouFit Gym, Shapes Health Club, Get Lean: Men and Women Gym, and Fit Girl Center which provide quality training for your body fitness. Moreover, there are few karate and taekwondo clubs for martial arts enthusiasts. Some of the top-rated karate clubs in this part of the city are Gym and Karate Club, Tai Karate Centre, Karachi Taekwondo Academy, and National Institute of Karate-Do Pakistan.
Parks in Saddar Town Karachi
Residents of Saddar Town have access to many parks where they can spend their spare time, stroll or jog on the tracks. There is Jahangir Park near Empress Market, Nishtar Park, and Burns Gardens. Apart from the local parks, there is a famous historical building called ‘Frere Hall.’ It is located near Fatima Jinnah Road. Frere Hall was once a residence of Fatimah Jinnah that was later transformed into a museum and a park. It has now become a well-known spot for locals and tourists alike.
Salons and Spas in Saddar Town Karachi
There are many beauty salons in Saddar Town that provide refreshing facial massages and speedy makeovers. There is Pearl Salon near Saddar area which offers a complete package for your styling. Other notable salons in the area are Aneela's Beauty Parlor, Style Lab Beauty Parlour, Moon Beauty Parlor, Impulse Beauty Salon, Farzana Beauty Parlour, and Sammy Beauty Parlour. Hi-Lites Beauty Parlour and Training Centre, situated opposite Nishtar Park, is notable for providing beauty tips and training classes for beginners.
Regional Passport Office in Saddar Town Karachi
The regional passport office branch is located in main Saddar Town on Shahrah-e-Iraq and the people who reside in South, West/Malir and Central zones get their passport registration from this branch. It has multiple designated counters operating for each zone and the office timings are 9 AM to 5 PM, from Monday to Friday.
Saddar Town has a special tour bus service near Abdullah Haroon Road known as “Super Savari Express.” It offers different customized tours via public buses. The service comprises qualified personnel who guide people throughout the tour and educate them about the rich culture of Pakistan.
A lot of festivals and other important events are organized at Frere Hall. In 2014 and 2016, Karachi Food Festival was organized here; thousands of people attended the event and tried various cuisines from the stalls of different brands. In addition, the local government has plans to relaunch Sunday Book Bazaar. So, if you’re a bookworm and plan to move to Saddar Town, you’re in for a treat (almost every other weekend).
Located in the center of Karachi, Saddar Town has access to many important locations. For instance, Kimari is a 15-minute drive away from Saddar Town. Port Grand is 6 to 7 km away. The best part about this place is that a lot of important neighborhoods are located within the area such as Clifton, Shahrah-e-Faisal, Sea View Beach, Nanakwara, Kharadar, Meethadar, Lighthouse, Bolton Market, Jodia Bazar, Garden, I.I Chundrigarh Road, and M.A. Jinnah Road.
THINGS TO CONSIDER
When you live in Saddar Town, you're a part of a community. In fact, it has been observed that a lot of people who chose to make their home in this part of the city have been residing here for decades. Plus, living in Saddar Town is convenient for the people as the area has everything in the vicinity such as good schools and colleges, a variety of grocery stores, restaurants, shopping malls, and market halls. You don’t have to travel too far to access all of these amenities. However, due to the fact that it is the central area of Karachi, with so many public buses passing through its roads, residents of Saddar face traffic jams almost on a daily basis.
Importance of Saddar Town Karachi from major locations nearby
- Clifton Beach is roughly 15 minutes away
- Shahrah-e-Faisal is just 2 to 3 km away from Lucky Star Chowk
- A 13-minute drive away from Port Grand