Istanbul is the capital of turkey. Istanbul has become a famous and beautiful city all over the world due to its architecture and is the oldest commercial city in the world. also, This Istanbul market is another reason to be.
This market is one of the oldest and most populous markets in the world as old as Istanbul itself. The first foundation of the Istanbul market was laid only in 1455, and the market grew slowly for centuries. Then in the 17th century was created the market which we see today in Istanbul.
What to know before traveling to the Istanbul market?
The Istanbul market is one of the largest markets in the world that you have never seen before and is composed of many large markets ranging from fresh food to expensive clothes and furniture.
The area built for the Istanbul Market is built according to an ancient construction technique. Out of which, there are about 5,000 shops and about 26,000 employees serving between 25,000 and 400,000 visitors daily.
The most important thing you should know before traveling to the Istanbul market is although the price of some goods is very high you can bargain here and you can make Turkish sellers agree to a good deal through a bargain.
What is the famous Istanbul Market?
The markets in Istanbul have separate markets for different types of goods and you can find a large number of stalls for different goods in Istanbul. The oldest and most popular of these markets is the Grand Bazaar.
Then there are many markets belonging to various categories such as the jewelry market, miscellaneous goods market, fish market, and book market. Let’s talk clearly about this one by one.
The Spice Bazaar
The famous market for spices is known as the Spice Bazaar and It is one of the most colorful and fragrant markets in Istanbul. Here you can find all kinds of spices that can flavor and color any kind of food in the world. It is now also known as the Egyptian Bazaar and it is because, after the great fire that occurred in Istanbul in 1660, it was rebuilt with Egyp help and Egyptian spices. Hence the name Egyptian Bazaar is also used.
Spices from two continents can be found in one place and because of the reasonable prices and deals that can be obtained by barging, Spice Bazaar is a must-visit place in the Istanbul market. Among the spices you can find here, you can find chili, saffron, black cumin, as well as sauces that are used to flavor food made by mixing fruits and spices.
The Grand Bazaar
Istanbul Grand Bazaar is one of the largest and most popular markets in the world. Spread over 30,000 square meters, the market is home to 4,000 shops. At the top of the list of things to do in Istanbul, the Grand Bazaar is a one-stop shop for all household essentials at the lowest prices. Regardless of the price of the goods here, by bargaining, you can persuade the sellers to get it for a lower price.
This is the most crowded market in Turkey and has 65 bazaars. There are different types of shops on each of the streets and carpets, lamps, ceramics, metalware, and jewelry are available in many shops here. Also, replica goods belonging to famous brand names from all over the world are available here at very low prices.
Beyazit Book Bazaar
If there is a place in Turkey that will make any literary lover swoon, it is the Beyazit Book Bazaar in Fati, Istanbul. The history here runs too deep and the market is said to be the place where the first book was printed in Turkey at the time, as well as a book and paper market before.
One can find here extensive collections of new, used, international, and illustrated books as well as rare and old texts. Religious and specialist works, even historical maps can also be found in this book market. If you are a fan of literature, you will surely find a treasure trove of literature here.
These bookstores also offer souvenirs such as prayer beads, Middle Eastern perfumes, bookmarks, and also can be seen paintings that inspire your creativity.
Heading to the Asian side of Istanbul, you’ll find the incredible Kadıköy Market, a haven for food and drink. It has grown in popularity since its inception in the late 1960s and offers a wide range of food, from snacks to fresh seafood.
Kadıköy has become the center of many food tours in the city because of its diverse and high-quality cuisine. From cheese to pickles and coffee to suit your personal taste, you’ll be able to find true culinary delights on your market visit.
There are also stalls selling all kinds of olives, countless kinds of cheese, and colorful flowers. If you want to discover the depth and variety of Turkish cuisine, this market will be a great experience for you.
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Fatih Market is in the Fatih area of Istanbul that is only open on Wednesdays. Wednesday Fatih market is one of the best places to get home kitchen essentials at affordable prices. You can buy everything from vegetables, fruits, and meats as well as cosmetics and clothes, and don’t forget to bargain.
Also, there are many local restaurants in the surrounding area so you can enjoy a local meal, but you won’t be able to bargain when it comes to food. It is also possible to visit the Sultan Fatih Mosque near this market and for that, you have to dress up with a full body cover.
Ulus Pazarı Market
Known as the “Society Market”, this weekly market is famous for trading in clothes. Open all day on Thursday for you, it’s a spacious space for nearly 1,000 vendors and you’ll find a wide variety of styles here.
You can find products here under top brand names as well as some genuine and fake brands too. You’ll also find great fabrics, leathers, and coats, and while many items may have minor imperfections, they’ll sell for incredibly low prices. This market is a wonderful place to find a bargain.
Beşiktaş Fish Bazaar
Seafood is a staple of Turkish culture and cuisine, and a visit to a fish market is a wonderful experience when exploring Istanbul.
Filled with fresh fish, lobster, and more, this space is a great way to see the fish you see in seafood before they’re eaten. The market and surrounding restaurants are a haven for seafood lovers and should make sure to come hungry if you visit.
What is famous to buy in the Istanbul market?
There are many stalls in the Istanbul markets where a visitor has many choices to buy. Among these, there are several liquids that many people want to buy specifically, and there are several of them. we looked a little bit at it and here are some of them
Carpets & Kilims
One of Turkey’s most famous handicrafts is hand-woven carpets and kilims (flat weaves). Meanwhile, Istanbul Market is one of the most popular shopping destinations in the country to buy a rug for home or office use.
Turkey has a rich and valuable history of carpet making, with different regions, cities, and even villages across the country known for creating various traditional designs.
As well as textiles made in Turkey, there are carpets and kilims imported from Central Asian countries. There are many carpet shops here, where you can see different types of carpets and get some idea of what you like. Good carpet salespeople will always treat you to a cup of tea, talk you through their stock and show you the range of different types of carpets they have.
A good carpet dealer will never pressure you to buy and will not be bothered when you try to visit other stores to see how the prices of similar pieces compare. Bargaining can also lead to deals.
Hand Painted Ceramic Plates
Turkish ceramics are known worldwide for their rich colors and elaborate designs. A wide variety of this pottery is sold throughout Istanbul markets. Although the Iznik artisans initially created wares in imitation of Chinese pottery, they soon became accustomed to making their own.
By the 16th century, under Suleiman the Magnificent, the creation of this pottery design spread rapidly throughout Turkey. Turkish artisans like to combine geometric patterns with carnations, roses, hyacinths, and above all tulips.
Lamps & Lanterns
Buying lamps and lanterns to bring back home after a trip to Turkey has become a hugely popular craft item among many tourists visiting Istanbul markets.
You can buy a whole range of modern designs from mosaic glass table lamps to metal filigree chandeliers and ceiling lamps.
Tea and coffee serving sets using intricately carved metal trays and traditional Ottoman patterned designs are among the most popular items in Turkey. Carved Turkish coffee pots are a useful as well as a beautiful item for making coffee on the stove.
You can see men playing tavla or backgammon in almost every street corner cafe in Istanbul. There are a number of stalls in Istanbul that sell beautiful mosaic backdrops of different woods. Hand-sized sets start at 20TL, full size – 50TL. These are popular selling items in the Turkish market
A pastime of the ancient Persians was smoking through a water pipe, which is now known as nargile in Turkey.
The nargile glass bottles are colorful and the attached metal tube, the hose, creates a shape unique to the Middle East.
During the Ottoman period, nargiles became very popular in Turkey and their popularity declined with the advent of the cigarette. Recently, however, the popularity of nargiles has started to increase again as more and more flavored water pipes hit the market.
Many countries in the world have a tea tradition unique to them. The Turks’ own tradition of black tea is a must-try in Istanbul, and you can also take home some fragrant Turkish tea from the Grand Bazaar or Spice Bazaar. Loose-leaf teas can be found in a variety of blended teas such as “love tea”, “winter tea”, “orange tea”, and “romantic tea”
Turkish spices and scents
You can find many spices, herbs, perfumes, and other traditional aromatic products sold in the Grand Bazaar as well as in the Spice Bazaar. Quality Middle Eastern saffron, spices, and curry powders are sold in neat packets, and some of the friendly vendors here who specialize in fragrance can even create a custom blend of perfume just for you.
What brands are cheap in the Istanbul market?
The clothing market in Istanbul is generally cheaper because Turkey has a large clothing and fashion industry and international brands have Turkish clothing stores.
Many fashion brands produce clothes in Turkey. some of such famous brand names are H&M, River Island, Next, and Zara. Clothes from these brands and many more brands are available at low prices. These famous brands are taking advantage of the excellent quality of Turkish cotton and textiles sourced in Turkey.
For this reason, Turkish clothes and some well-known brands are cheaper in Turkey. However, some international brand clothes are expensive in Turkey due to transportation costs, import and luxury taxes
What is the best time for shopping in the Istanbul market?
Istanbul Shopping Festival is held for 40 days in June, July, and August, offering significant discounts across various malls and markets. But due to the large number of tourists who gather at the Grand Bazaar at this time, the ability to bargain decreases. However, From mid-December to early January, discounts are available at many malls across the city.
What should female tourists wear in the Istanbul market?
Although Istanbul is a majority Muslim country, it is considered a country that respects tourists of all nationalities because it is nourished by European and Asian cultures. But when we travel to another country as tourists, it is worth respecting the culture and traditions of that country. You don’t need special clothes to wear when you visit Istanbul markets. but it is important to have knee-length clothing as a sign of respect for the institution. This is not mandatory.
And by having such a dress, you can even get easy access to the mosques around Istanbul.