best Shopping places in Istanbul
Best bazaars and Markets
Everything one needs to know!
Istanbul has some amazing markets/bazaars with an attractive variety of souvenirs and local goods. These colorful markets are full shops selling accessories, bags, electronics, copy of designer goods etc. All the bazaars need bargaining skills and patience to find a shop selling the same product at a good price. Lets check out the best places for shopping in Istanbul
Table of Contents
Grand Bazaar - Kapali Carsi
One of the best and most popular markets of Istanbul is the Kapali Carsi, known as Grand Bazaar. If you are visiting Istanbul you cannot miss this place. It is one of the oldest and largest covered markets in Turkey.
It has a great variety of shops and small stalls selling pretty souvenirs, carpets, handicrafts, Turkish sweets, counterfeit branded bags and clothes, ceramics, Nazar- evil eye ornaments, accessories and silver items.
This bazaar is divided in many small lanes and it is very easy to loose track from where you entered and where you are heading.
It has around 22 exits and entry and 60 lanes of shops, not less than any maze. The main entrance is the Beyazit Gate just opposite Beyazit Tram Station.
This bazaar is divided in sections like an area selling antiques which is the center of the market, area selling Gold jewelry etc.
Dont rush to buy the first thing you see as you may find it at cheaper price ahead. Make sure to bring out your bargaining skills.
A map of Grand Bazaar will help you
Beyazıt, Kalpakçılar Cd. No:22, 34126 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
Monday – Saturday 10am to 7 pm
Closed on Sundays
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Spice Bazaar- Misir Carsisi
Spice Bazaar/ Misir Carsisi or popularly known as Egyptian Bazaar is similar to Grand Bazaar. As its name suggests, it has number of shops mainly selling all kind of spices and dried fruits. As you enter the market a pleasant fragrance of all fresh spices hits you tempting you to buy few. Some popular items are rose water, saffron, cinnamon sticks, sheesha, perfumes and off-course famous Turkish tea.
They vacuum seal your bags so you easily pack and carry your spices.
Along with spices, a lot of shops sell Turkish Delights, cosmetics like famous products from rose water etc. You can definitely have a stroll around and click nice pictures even though you might not be interested in buying spices.
Location: Rüstem Paşa, Erzak Ambarı Sok. No:92, 34116 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday 8 am to 7 pm, Saturday 8 am 7.30 pm, Sunday 9.30 am to 7 pm
This bazaar is the one which connects the Spice Bazaar and Grand Bazaar. If you walk straight through Spice Bazaar you will enter MohamutPasha Bazaar. Lanes full of shops and items selling varied goods. It is usually very crowded and full of tourists as well as local people. You can spot several shops selling accessories like bags, necklaces, pyjamas, bracelets, souvenirs, unique home decoration items etc. Also, there is a section which has shops mainly selling great cushion covers, Turkish towels, electronics and many phone accessories. This market has many lanes which criss-cross each other and lead to Grand Bazaar. Also, not to forget the enormous variety of counterfeit products of luxury brands like Louis Vuitton Bags, Gucci, Channel, etc. I thoroughly recommend you to visit this bazaar and not to miss it.
You can walk to Mahmut pasha bazar it starts right after the Grand bazar located near beyazit tram station, or you can take the tram T1 from beyazit tram station to Eminonu and enter Mahmutpasha bazaar through spice bazar
Location: Tahtakale, Sabuncu Hanı Sk. No:52, 34116 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
Monday – Sunday 8.30 am to 10 pm
Arasta Bazaar - Arasta carsisi
Araasta Bazaar is also a similar version but a bit pricey. Located in the district of SultanAhmet, just 2 minutes walking from the famous mosque. Unlike other markets this one is less crowded and just one small alley of shops. Some shops definitely have some unique items so you can head here while exploring the SultanAhmet area.
Arasta Bazaar, Sultan Ahmet, Mimar Mehmet Ağa Cd. No:2, 34122 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
Open from 9 am to 7 pm
The famous Ortakoy/Mecidiye Mosque has a very picturesque background. Nearby this mosque and the famous Ortakoy Square there are several small shops selling souvenirs, artistic items, jewelry etc. On Sundays and Thursdays there is also street bazaars with local people selling handmade items, women’s clothing and textiles. A nice bustling place to spend some time shopping and having some coffee and snacks while enjoying the view.
Location: Mecidiye, Mecidiye Köprüsü Sk. No:15, 34347 Beşiktaş/İstanbul, Turkey
Sunday and Thursday market 9am to 12 am
Alleys/lanes of Istiklal Street
Istiklal street is the most famous shopping place in Istanbul. But very few know there are small lanes/alleys and arcades perpendicular to this street. The small arcades are called Pasaji. They sell some local items and souvenirs at cheap rate. If you want to gift someone you can have a stroll around these arcades. Though not huge, you can visit them if you are passing by or shopping at Istiklal Street.
Location: Istiklal Street near Taksim Square