grand bazaar, Istanbul

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  • Alikatt's Profile Photo

    Abdulla: wonderful natural products

    by Alikatt Updated Nov 25, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    with the owner, Metin at Fes Cafe's new location

    Abdulla is a haven for luxuriating in a bath if you want to be surrounded by naturally derived products for the bath as well as natural fabrics to wrap yourself in apres bath. There are bed and bath linen made of cotton/silk/linen and combinations thereof which are hand loomed by traditional, rare methods. The owner, Metin Tosun works hard at bringing these disappearing crafts to your experience in these modern times. There are also soaps, essential oils plus mohair and sheep skin throws.

    What to buy: dyed sheep skin bed covers and throws, just about any item there is a gem.

    What to pay: prices are higher than usual bath products because the techiques are specialized and the experience of being in either one of this two shops adjacent to Cafe Fez is just wonderful.

    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Historical Travel
    • Museum Visits

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  • temizoza's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Most traditional things!

    by temizoza Written Sep 1, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    grand bazaar

    Istanbul's Grand Bazaar (Kapali Çarsi, or Covered Market) is Turkey's largest covered market offering excellent shopping: beautiful Turkish carpets, glazed tiles and pottery, copper and brassware, apparel made of leather, cotton and wool, meerschaum pipes, alabaster bookends and ashtrays, and all sorts of other things.
    Most guidebooks claim that it has 4000 shops. Because of consolidation and replacement of shops by restaurants and other services the number is certainly lower, but you get the idea: it has lots of shops. Not all of them, by the way, are for tourists; locals shop here as well, lending a welcome dose of authenticity.

    Kapalýçarþý is a great bazaar in Nuri Osmaniye and Beyazid Mosques and Mahmutpaþa Bazaar, made up of streets of various shops sheltered by roofs and domes. Though not very regularly shaped, it holds and area of about 31 thousand square meters. It has hundreds of domes which are covered with lead and windows. The nucleus of Kapalýçarþý is a Byzantine building which is today called Old Bedesten. The section of the bazaar where valuables and jewellery are bought and sold was commissioned by Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror and the main great bazaar itself was commissioned during Kanuni Sultan Suleyman, on a wooden basis. Kapalýçarþý, today has a surface of 30.7 hectares, 61 streets, 10 wells, 4 fountains, 2 mosques and over 3 thousand shops, managed to claim its present look within 250 years.

    Kapalýçarþý, which burned in years of 1546, 1618, 1652, 1660, 1695, 1701, 1750 has always been repaired after each disaster. After all this, it had undergone great damage in the earthquake of 1766. It is partially burned in fires of 1791 and 1826. The bazaar which had just regain is composure was again shaken by an earthquake in 1894 this time. It catches fire again in 1954 at the latest and could only be repaired in five years.

    What to buy: Beautiful Turkish carpets, glazed tiles and pottery, copper and brassware, apparel made of leather, cotton and wool, meerschaum pipes, alabaster bookends and ashtrays, and all sorts of other things.

    What to pay: BE CAREFUL!!! THE PRICES ARE NOT REAL PRICES!! AT LEAST DOUBLED OR SOMETIMES TRIPLED!!!

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture

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  • angelochka's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: better to find good guide

    by angelochka Updated Aug 25, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    everyone knows Grand Bazaar is so huge..you could spend few days to discover it and get lost many times...i was lucky enough to visit it 2 times and i had the best guide ever (thanks again Mike to being so nice to me and to other people)..Mike knows all the best shops, owners of these shops, and he can get good discount for you:) but the most important thing, Mike knows everthing about art (if it's possible...), he distinguish at the moment if such thing is a real piece of art and worth requested price or just some fake or cheap thing.. anyway you could never find anyone who knows more about carpets

    What to buy: you can find at Grand Bazaar anything you want, but for me you could never find better place to buy presents, you have so wide choice from traditional, artisanal things, antique things, jewellery..

    What to pay: depends on your need, but being a woman ,i couldnt stop being mesmerized by beautiful jewellery:) i could spend a fortune on these ethnical handmade earrings, necklaces..

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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  • midnight_mike's Profile Photo

    Grand Bazaar: Bargain hard

    by midnight_mike Written May 27, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Going to the Grand Bazaar is an event. It has more than 4,000 shops! There are plenty of soveneir shops in Istanbul, but none offer the excitement of this covered market. Because this is a tourist haven, shop keepers raise the asking price of the merchandise. This means you will have to bargain hard for a fair price. You might pay anywhere from 25-percent and 75-percent of the asking price. Whatever you find in one store, it can certainly be found in a dozen nearby shops. If you are looking for a water pipe, visit a couple shops with a good selection of them before actually negotiating. You can also say, "Hey, why would I pay you $10 when I get the same thing at the other store for $5" As soon as you turn your back to leave the store, the salesman will say "ok, ok, you have a deal."

    The Grand Bazaar is closed on Sundays.

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  • suzzii's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Shopping in the grand bazaar

    by suzzii Written Apr 16, 2006

    The Grand Bazaar is a great place to visit and it is a must do if you are visiting Istanbul, but if you cannot handle the pressure of the men trying to sell you stuff then stay away ,if they spot that you talk another language from turkish then they are on to you. And will follow you half way down the corridor untill you shrugg them off it is a brilliant place to visit though.
    You can buy almost everything here, and you can manage to get some good deals and you can also be ripped off by the local tradesmen. It can help if you can talk fluent Turkish to haggle with them but most of them talk broken English. It may also help to have a Turkish friend with you so that they can haggle to get that special item you really want.

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    • Historical Travel

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  • EdinburghRoc's Profile Photo

    Grand Bazaar: SPICES

    by EdinburghRoc Written Mar 14, 2006

    It sells everything and is well worth a visit even if you don't buy anything its well worth seeing. Perhaps safer than shopping on the streets.
    Its crowded keep your money in your front trouser pocket.

    What to buy: Spices would be good souvenirs.

    What to pay: £-£££

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Architecture

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  • Luchonda's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Local craft

    by Luchonda Updated Sep 19, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The grand Bazaar
    4 more images

    The oldest and biggest closed bazaar in the world, has around 4000 shops and over 60 alleyway, covering a huge labyrinth in the city centre.
    It is the place to be for shopping - you can find almost everything - and it is a sport to bargain with the turkish vendors.
    The Paperrazzia team (esp.the ladies) had a problem choosing the gifts and bargain the price, but we catched the waiting bus for the hotel, just in time.

    What to buy: Call it and you will find it.
    Juwelery, leather handycraft ....

    What to pay: They accept creditcards - but like to receive cash, dollars or euro - doesn't matter

    Related to:
    • Festivals

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  • ophiro's Profile Photo

    The Grand Bazaar: The Grand Bazaar

    by ophiro Updated Jul 25, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Grand Bazaar

    The grand bazaar is a very big covered bazaar with many streets inside and a lot of stores.
    You can find here shirts , jewelery , lamps , leather , music instruments , carpets and many more.
    When you want to buy something bargain for the price it is a known custom in Turkey.

    What to buy: you can find jewelery , clothes , leather , antiques and many many more.

    What to pay: Depends on what you want to buy - they also accept Euro , USD and of course YTL.

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  • Svillegas's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Whatever you want!

    by Svillegas Updated Jun 8, 2005
    Egipcian Bazaar

    Istambul is like a huge shop, there's thousands of shops everywhere where you can buy whatever you want.

    The only difference is that you have to discuss the price of the things, you'll become an expert in only a couple of days...

    There are more than one baazar, I went to the Egipcian Baazar (smaller and less people) and the Grand Baazar

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  • HotRodEtte's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Rugs are a must!

    by HotRodEtte Written May 27, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The bazaars in Istanbul are unique to what we normally see here in the USA. Merchants are competitive and everyone wants you as a customer. Bargaining with the merchants will help you to get more items for your money.

    What to buy: Turkish rugs are the most common things tourists will come home with. You may get the authentic silk rugs, which start at approximately $400 USD, or you may go wtih the less expensive synthetic rugs that can cost beginning anywhere near 20 or 30 Euro. Only downfall is that some of the rugs may be too large to bring home and you would have to pay extra charges for shipping home (which can really add up).

    What to pay: Anywhere from 20-50 Euro for a cotton rug; anywhere from $400 USD to $1000 USD if not more for a silk rug depending on its size and quality.

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  • Tjello's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: there's so much more than only the grand bazaar !!

    by Tjello Written Apr 15, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    - The streets surrounding it are very well worth a closer look.

    The vendors are not half as obtrusive and there's less of us, tourists.... -

    What to buy: well, clothes of any kind, jewelry, CD's (turkish),
    (very) old posters, indeed carpets,

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  • luiggi's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: grand bazaar

    by luiggi Written Mar 26, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Grand Bazaar

    The Grand Bazaar (Kapalicarsi in Turkish) is one of the the largest covered markets in the world with its 4400 shops, 3000 firms, some 17 hans (separate inns for specific type of products), 64 streets,25.000 employees, 4 fountains, 2 mosques and 22 gates. It's a real heaven for shoppers and a good opportunity for people to discover the Turkish hospitality. It looks like a labyrinth at first sight but it's actually not that complicated. All you have to do is to keep your eyes on the main street (Kalpakcilarbasi Street, the jewelry street). The Bazaar was first constructed in 1464 with the order of Mehmed II 'the Conqueror' and had many restorations over the years due to the extensive fires and destructive earthquakes. There are tens of cafés, a police station, little mosques, tourists information points in the bazaar.

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  • bdwoot's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: "Hey, sir..."

    by bdwoot Written Jan 8, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    "Sir, your wife, she looks cold, she needs a new leather coat."

    "Sir, do you love your wife? If you do, buy her a new necklace right here."

    "Sir, do you have a minute?..."

    And on and on. Sales resistance is easy here, and you need it every minute in this place.

    What to buy: Cheap leather goods, incredible silversmiths, evil eyes of every size and description, Russian icons, tourist crap, and more stuff than I can recall.

    What to pay: The more willing you are to walk away, the cheaper it gets.

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  • vtveen's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: always something somewhere

    by vtveen Written Jan 1, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Turkish lights

    There should be more than 4.000 shops in the Grand Bazaar, the biggest ‘souk’ in the world. But it is almost impossible to count and see them all.

    You will find different areas with different kinds of tradesmen.

    Somewhere in the Grand Bazaar you will always find something (and always have to bargain and to bargain again…).

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  • obcbreeze's Profile Photo

    grand bazaar: Grand Bazaar of Istanbul

    by obcbreeze Written Nov 7, 2004
    Only 3214 more shops to go

    Yes it's overpriced. Yes it's crowded. But it's the Grand Bazaar. The sights, sounds, smells make this an overwhelming adventure. We kept going back and exploring the maze of back alleys. It's part of the fun of the bazaar. If you have time walk through to the spice bazaar.

    What to pay: If you do decide to buy something, haggle, haggle, haggle. We started by offering half the price and going from there.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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