I couldn't resist taking a few photos of the spectacular fish display on a street stall in Bursa. We were walking around the old town and heading back to the hotel when we came across this stall.
It was a shame we couldn't buy some and throw the on the barbeque for supper.
It seems as if haggling is a way of life in Turkey. Plenty of shops to keep you amused for an hour or three.
Silk is the strong point in many shops. Silk was Bursa's prime cloth trade for centuries, and although much of the silk now on sale comes from elsewhere, the variety and selection are still impressive.
We had a chat with one of the local stall holders and he welcomed us to Bursa. He said that he had put up the "Welcome to Bursa Hell" sign up at the entrance as a bit of fun and we chatted about the upcoming match.
I mentioned that I was looking to buy a Bursaspor team scarf and he kindly sold me on, stating that this was a special scarf worn by on of the Bursaspor Ultra Supporters group called the Texans.
The silk house offers many souvenirs, clothing, upholstery and other items to visitors of the Green Mosque. Their prices are reasonable and their products great.
What to buy: I bought lovely black cotton pants almost in the Turkish pants style for $15
The Koza Han is an old caravan serial: a nice place to shop or to have a tea or coffee in the centre of the building, shaded by old trees. It is 'the other end' of the great silk route to or from China, the other end being Xi'an. There are a number of outlets of a company called 'Bursa Ipek' and we were very well served by one of them: 'upper floor', number 275. Friendly, english speaking staff, nice collection of silk and silk and cotton shawls.
What to buy: Silk or silk and cotton shawls.
What to pay: About 30 euro's.
Of special interest is the Eski Aynali Carsi ("Old Mirrored Market"), which was actually built as a hamam (Turkish bath), but later converted into shops.
In my opinion there two good shops here Minyatür and Karagöz. They both sell antiques. At Minyatur you can find good samples of porcelain, jewellery, watches etc. And Karagoz is an antiques and handicrafts shop that also carries Karagöz shadow puppets.
What to buy: Artifacts, antiques, Turkish puppet theatre figures.
Meaning "Cocoon Inn," this caravansary was built in 1490 by Beyazit II to raise funds for his mosque in Istanbul. Built on two levels, the inn provided a place for the merchants to trade the last of their goods, as this was the final stop on the Silk Road from China. In the middle of the courtyard is a small sadirvan (ablution fountain) for the small mescit (prayer room) poised above; in the summer the verdant space becomes a peaceful tea garden. The monumental portal decorated with turquoise tiles and carvings leads into the covered bazaar. Today the Koza Hani continues its legacy of trading in silk with shops and boutiques stocked with scarves and fabrics at exorbitant (yet negotiable) prices.
Its a small shop runs by a painter who designs the motives and figures. That why it is cheap and elegance. Highly recommended :)
What to buy: scarves, ties, fabric, wall hangings, handkerchiefs, shirts etc all made of silk and very cheap.
Silk has been produced in Bursa for many hundred years. Still today the trade with cocoons is lively in the old hans after harvest.
The picture is from Koza Han, where almost every shop on the second floor sells beautiful silk scarves in almost all colours. I didn’t buy a scarf while I was in Bursa and I regret it now!
The Kozahan is the ancient Silk Market which is still in use. Maybe 20 shops, all selling various colors, patterns, and either raw or pre-tailored silks.
What to buy: Silks of course. You can get pre-tailored suits, dresses, ties, etc. Or you can simply pick up raw sheets for own creations.
[If you need more day to day things, obviously there are a few general stores and there the the department store in the Pyramid Center, see the photo. There are several floors underground, giving all the conveniences of a modern shopping mall.]
What to pay: Haggle for the best price
YOU SHOULD DROP BY TILLA CAUSE IT IS THE BEST PLACE TO HAVE A GOOD QUALITY SILK SCARF MADE IN BURSA. THEY HAVE SPECIAL STAFF LIKE GUSTAV KLIMT'S "THE KISS" THE MAIDEN" AND "THE GARDEN" AS A SCARF. THEY ALSO HAVE MOZART'S "EINE KLEINE NACHTMUSIK" AS A SCARF AND A LONG SCARF. THEY ARE FABULOUS....THEY HAVE BERAT OF SELIM II AS A LONG SCARF, I SAW THE FRAMED ONE, IT IS SO DIFFERENT AND CAN BE A BEAUTIFUL GIFT...THEY HAVE A LOT THAT I CANT WRITE IT ALL HERE...SO YOU HAVE TO GO AND SEE WHAT THEY HAVE.... THEY HAVE UNIQUE STAFF NOT LIKE ALL THE SHOPS IN KOZAHAN....
What to buy: SILK:ALL KINDS OF SILK SCARF, FOULARDS AND SHAWLS
What to pay: PER ITEM IT CHANGES ACCORDING TO THE QUALITY OF SILK:FROM 10 USD TO 50 USD
Bursa is a shadow of its glorious past during the heydays of the silk trade. The famous Bursa silk still exists, but are now overran by cheap (both in price and quality) imports from China and Thailand. Thus, you have to look harder if you are interested in what this city was once famous for - Bursa silk and Ottoman scarves.
The Bursa silk Ottoman scarves were the most 'serious' stuff I bought during my trip to Turkey. And they don't come cheap - a scarf could set you back by about US$ 50 (a large sum for a scarf and that is after heavy haggling!).
Well, my mom and sisters should better be thankful...
What to buy: Bursa silk
Some say it's glass pyramid central atrium is gross, vulgar, and out of place in a city with rich heritage such as Bursa. But like IM Pei's glass pyramid at the Louvre, Zafer's version offers a striking contrast and welcome break to the city's historical buildings. It rather complements the city's otherwise monotonous architecture.
This is probably Bursa's ritziest shopping place with some well-known brands. Speaks mainly about Bursa's good economic fortune, which is also evident in the city's well-dressed cafe-going class. The open air square near Starbucks is a great place to people watch and enjoy your latte.
Did you know that towel was first invented in Bursa in 18th. century? Still, Bursa is famous with its towels. Bursa towels would be a good gift for your friends.
Ozdilek is the leading towel and bathrobe producer in Turkey. It is also among the 10 largest producers in the world. So, i recommend you to buy Ozdilek towels.
You can find it in shops in the city. However, if you wish you can go to their own shopping center which take place near by the factory. It is located at 4th km. on Yalova road.
If you are going to Yalova or Istanbul, you can stop by to do shopping at this shopping center. You can also eat at the meat restaurant just near the shopping center.
What to buy: Towels, bathrobes
What to pay: Depends on you
Zafer Plaza Shopping Centre is a huge complex in several floors with almost all modern stores you can think of.
There is also a floor for food: McDonald’s etc.
Coming here felt like a big contrast from the hans and streets north of Atatürk Caddesi.
What to buy:
Kestane sekeri - candied chestnuts.
Although one can find them elsewhere, the local candy/treat in Bursa is kestane sekeri, candied chestnuts. The trees grow in profusion near Bursa and more so than other towns one sees the candied nuts for sale everywhere, including the main otogar. They're delicious and there are whole nuts soaked in syrup or nuts ground up in chocolate in various mixtures. One can buy them bulk or sealed in jars to take home!
This has a glass pyramid roof like Louvre museum in Paris in the mall you can find everything and can see what you expect from a mall elsewhere ... very close to city center...
What to buy: The famous cotton towels.. silk clothes and carpets...