grand bazaar, Istanbul

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    by Dabs
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    Grand Bazaar: Grand Bazaar

    by Dabs Updated Aug 4, 2013

    The Grand Bazaar is on everyone's list of places to visit, in some ways it is overwhelming as it seems to go on forever and you're never really sure if you are ever going to find an exit and when you do find an exit you have no idea which side of it you are on. The Grand Bazaar is primarily, or perhaps or even solely, for the tourists. The booths are stocked with jewelry, souvenirs, rugs, tea, Turkish delight, spices.

    Sticking to the middle of the aisle will result in less interaction with the merchants, show an interest in an item or make eye contact and you will almost immediately be asked if you need any help. I had to chuckle when I heard some of the same lines I heard from vendors in Mexico, my favorite implying that me and my husband of 24 years were on our honeymoon! Some of the people selling jewelry will ask you to come into their shop and have a seat. The couple of times I asked the price of a piece of silver jewelry, they weighed it and quoted a price far in excess of what I would be willing to pay for it, even if the merchant were willing to bargain, I couldn't see how we'd ever get to a point where we'd both be happy so I didn't bother.

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    grand bazaar: Don't just shop, experience this bazaar!

    by vpas Written Dec 13, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is an old bazaar where local crafts, clothes, jewellery, fake brands, perfumes.... and so much more is sold. One needs to be an expert bargainer. It is best to go here only if you are confident about your bargaining skills, otherwise it is better to go to the Asian side and shop there. Better to avoid jewellery shopping here. Local crafts, bags and fake brands are good here.

    What to buy: Fake branded jeans, shirts, bags, shoes, Turkish ethnic items, imitation jewellery, table ware... so much more...

    What to pay: Bargain, bargain, bargain --- at least less than half of what they quote!!

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    Grand Bazaar: Loved it

    by wise23girl Updated Nov 26, 2012

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    look at the goodies
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    Luckily for us the Grand Baazar was no more than 10 minutes stroll from Hotel Niles where we stayed.
    And did we have a shopping spree...David was like a little boy in a candy store while I worried about weight on the plane!

    The majority of sellers were well mannered.."Will you visit my shop"...Most accepted "hayer" or whatever "no" is in Turkish.

    I tried to respond with a few words in Turkish...they seemed to like that.

    What to buy: In the Grand Baazar there are leather goods, carpets, jewellery, watches, scarves by the thousand, t shirts,handbags, dolls and places to enjoy (or otherwise) turkish coffee....but you must try it.

    You wonder how on earth they make a living with so much repetition...well we helped. David had a bit of a spending spree.

    Actually I liked the Spice Baazar as there were a few different things to look at...spices of course...more choice of Turkish delight...flowers... but it was further away. from our hotel.

    We bought a beautiful bag to carry all the goodies " all made in Turkey" so colourful

    And do make sure you have smaller notes. For small items 100 TL is looked at with horror. Have 20 TL at least.

    What to pay: As many Turkish Lira as you have..or euro

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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    grand bazaar: Clothing

    by garfield. Updated Oct 14, 2012
    Note Building
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    The Grand Bazaar is really a tourist magnet.
    I have brought rugs from merchants and at good price. The prices are not what they used to be. That said we stepped outside the Bazaar, follow locals and the better shopping is to be had.

    Eminönü docks/ferry port.

    There is a subway with sellers from t-shirts, bags, underwear, during the day and by night time different sellers are out. The T-shirts are the cheapest here. Twelve - fifteen lira. Bazaar double and more.

    The booking office for the ferry is right in front, but when the crowds are there you may well miss it.

    What to buy: I personally would buy in the shops as opposed to the Bazaar.
    Rugs, i would purchase from a merchant. Not from someone who has family living in Sheffield! Pull out your tourist map by the Blue Mosque at your peril.

    What to pay: Bear in mind T-shirts was what i was shopping for. The night time experience would be great as the sellers are more engaging although limited.

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    • Singles

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    Grand Bazaar: Historic Mall

    by solopes Updated Sep 7, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Grand Bazaar - Istanbul - Turkey

    A big maze, it's the ideal place for shopping in Istanbul. The shopping lovers have everything there, their companion may enjoy the site.

    Much more organized than the Islamic souks, the place keeps the oriental touch, and bargaining is the general sport.

    Don't miss it.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

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  • grand bazaar: Skip this place and go to the Spice Market.

    by bittermelon Updated May 7, 2011

    It has everything, well almost. But mostly very aggressive merchants, lots of tourists, and exorbitant prices. Go to take a look and walk around. Try to walk in the center of the pathways so you won't get tackled by merchants. Personally I much prefer the Spice Market.

    What to buy: Nothing.

    What to pay: Usually too much.

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  • traveloturc's Profile Photo

    Grand Bazaar: The first mall of the world

    by traveloturc Updated Nov 23, 2010

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    covered bazaar
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    The world famous Covered bazaar (Kapali Carsi) is, owing to its architecture, history, location, and sheer variety of marchandise, one of Istanbul's most significant tourist sites. The Bazaar has eight different entrances, each of them facing one of the city's most important historic monuments. These include Nuruosmaniye Mosque, Çemberlitas, the Beyazýt Complex, Istanbul University and the Second Hand Book Bazaar. Built at the command of SultanMehmed the, Conqueror in 1461, the Bazaar initially consisted of just two warehouses (bedesten). In time, merchants began to set up their own stalls and workshops in the surrounding area. Dignitaries furthered the expansion with the addition of numerous caravanserais, so that the soon place had become a focus for trading goods from all over the empire. In the 16th and 17th centuries, however, the Bazaar suffered repeated damage from the fires that ravaged that part of the city, and in 1894 was destroyed alltogether by an earthquake. After being rebuilt in 1898, the Bazaar underwent futher renovation following the fires of 1943 and 1954.

    What to buy: In terms of structure, the visitor is confronted by what may at first seem a bewildering a maze of 61 streets. On closer inspection, however, it becomes apparent that there is, in fact, a reasonable semblance of order. The streets themselves are arranged on a grid-like system, are traditionally shopkeepers have tended to group themselves according to the type of goods they sell, whether it be jewellery, antiques, carpets, copper, or leather goods. Clues as to which area you might be in are often given by the names of streets, even if in some cases - the Street of the Turban Makers, for instance - the traders recalled are now mere vestiges of a colourful past.
    The Bazaar also functions as an unofficial financial centre, with a particular emphasis on gold and foreign exchange trading. Most shopkeepers will exchange different currencies.
    The Bazaar is open daily, except Sundays and public holidays, between 07:00 and 19:00.

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  • Willettsworld's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Grand Bazaar

    by Willettsworld Written Mar 1, 2010
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    The Grand Bazaar is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with more than 58 covered streets and over 1,200 shops which attract between 250,000 and 400,000 visitors daily. Opened in 1461, it is well known for its jewellery, pottery, spice, and carpet shops with many of the shops grouped by the type of goods they sell, with special areas for leather coats, gold jewellery and the like but it's still very easy to get lost despite there being signs. I found it to be a complete maze and a bit of a tourist trap where, in my view, most people of Istanbul wouldn't shop in.

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  • Tom_Fields's Profile Photo

    Grand Bazaar: Grand Bazaar, or Kapali Carsisi

    by Tom_Fields Written Feb 15, 2010
    Inside the Grand Bazaar
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    Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror opened this bazaar in 1461, not long after his conquest of Constantinople. Here is nearly everything under the sun.

    What to buy: Almost everything is for sale here.

    What to pay: Of course, one can save a lot of money by knowing how to haggle. You don't just pay the price right upfront, except for small, inexpensive items.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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  • dutchboycalledjan's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Carpets, Kilims and good friends: Baktiroglu

    by dutchboycalledjan Written Sep 6, 2009
    Shop
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    This was a nice, small shop in the Big Bazaar. We entered it by good luck with a specific wish and Mustafa succeeded were other shops failed to deliver the requested embroidered cloth. When you're looking for a well-tempered salesman who is friendly, let you take you time, has good (not too strong) tea and wants you to be happy - his motto is: 'as long as we have our good health': this is the place. When we were there, two of his previous customers came back, just for tea and a chat.

    What to buy: We bought a hand embroidered (silk on cotton) cloth, square (most are rectangular, to be used on beds) of very good quality.

    What to pay: There are cheaper one, but this cloth was well worth its about 300 euro's.

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  • dutchboycalledjan's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Carpets, Kilims and good friends: Baktiroglu

    by dutchboycalledjan Written Sep 6, 2009

    This was a nice, small shop in the Big Bazaar. We entered it by good luck with a specific wish and Mustafa succeeded were other shops failed to deliver the requested embroidered cloth. When you're looking for a well-tempered salesman who is friendly, let you take you time, has good (not too strong) tea and wants you to be happy - his motto is: 'as long as we have our good health': this is the place. When we were there, two of his previous customers came back, just for tea and a chat.

    What to buy: We bought a hand embroidered (silk on cotton) cloth, square (most are rectangular, to be used on beds) of very good quality.

    What to pay: There are cheaper one, but this cloth was well worth its about 300 euro's.

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  • alectrevor's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar --- Kapali Carsi: Not to be missed.

    by alectrevor Updated May 29, 2009

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of the entrances.
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    Indoors , several entrances, it is huge. There is a main "street" with lanes off it,must be "miles" of it. Sells everthing. Very crowded. If you are askiing locals directions to the Grand Bazaar try and say "Kapali Carsi". Not to be missed.

    What to buy: Has i cant carry much i bought loads of turkish delight.

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Grand Bazaar-Sahaflar Karsisi

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written May 14, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Grand Bazaar-Sahaflar Karsisi
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    The book dealers have since moved out of the main bazaar into a small open-air bazaar known as Sahaflar Karsisi next to Beyazit Gate.

    A leisurely afternoon spent exploring the bazaar, sitting in one of the cafés and watching the crowds pass by, and bargaining for purchases is one of the best ways to recapture the romantic atmosphere of old Istanbul.

    Over the centuries travelers to Istanbul have found the exotic atmosphere of this great bazaar, a miniature city within a city, irresistible.

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Grand Bazaar-Goods

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Updated May 14, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Grand Bazaar-Goods
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    It is well known for its jewelry, pottery, spice, and carpet shops. Many of the stalls in the bazaar are grouped by type of goods, with special areas for leather coats, gold jewelry and the like.
    Here the most valuable items and antiques were to be found in the past, and still are today, including copperware, amber prayer beads, inlaid weapons, icons, mother-of-pearl mirrors, water pipes, walking sticks, watches and clocks, candlesticks, old coins, and silver and gold jewelry set with coral and turquoise.

    You can watch my 3 min 57 sec HQ Video Istanbul Grand Bazaar part II out of my Youtube channel with Turkish pop music by Emre Altus – Fani Dunya.

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Grand Bazaar-Street Khan Gates

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written May 14, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Grand Bazaar-Street Khan Gates
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    The Grand Bazaar has four main gates situated at the ends of its two major streets which intersect near the southwestern corner of the bazaar. One street combines the Bayezid II Mosque and Bayezid Square with Nuruosmaniye Mosque.
    The Main way (Kalpakcilar Basi Caddesi) of the Grand Bazaar is especially impressive!

    You can watch my 2 min 01 sec HQ Video Istanbul Grand Bazaar part III out of my Youtube channel with Turkish pop music.

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