Bin auch sehr überrascht, dass deine Beiträge jetzt in Englisch sind, aber zum Glück nicht in Türkisch dann könnte ich sie leider nicht mehr lesen :-(
10 reviews of Kapalıçarşı in English
It took us long time to find it since around this area you have other bazaars and you think that you reached it already but it seems not be the one described in the guide. Once you reach it you can enjoy the nice architecture but in our case we were too tired after the long search. We were not the only one with this issue since once we got off, we were asked from other people about direction to the “Grand Bazar”
The Kapalı Çarşı (which translates to “closed Bazar”, cause there is a roof and it’s not open air) is a must-see! Even if it doesnt seem like it at first there is a logical structure to it – there is a district for silver and gold, one for cloths and fabrics (mostly pashminas and scarves), pottery with handmade decoration and paintings, shisha (turkish “nagile”) and backgommon is very famous there (“Tavla”).
No matter what you do, hold on to your wallet/purse tight as thiefs often look there for careless tourists. And also – never pay the first price (or second for that matter) you hear and alway compare! There on The pashmina-scarves I bought for example – when I asked how much they were (in English) he said 35 TL (about 15€). When I asked the same man again in turkish the next day he ask me if I was a Turk, I said “half” and he split the price in half right away without any further negotiation. In the end I bought three, 15 TL each which I tought was fair enough (outside the center you might get if even cheaper I suppose).
Some useful tips – if you like something, dont show interest right away. If you like a small silver ring for example, ask for the price of a bigger one first. We will tell you, you can haggle him down a bit and then, you go for the smaller one you really want. That they weight the silver doesnt mean too much. You can see the weight but you still dont know in what relation it stands to the price. If you can learn a few things in turkish in advance you will be well off! But all in all remember to stay friendly, if you get harsh they wont sell you anything anymore and the word will spread quickly among them.
Just to get an idea what things cost there (well or at least how much I paid…)
- A large wooden Tavla-Game: 60 TL (plastic is lot cheaper)
- Pashmina-scarve (made in turkey, silk): 15 TL
- Pottery bowls with complicated hand-painting (there are different one): 3TL, soup-sizes 6 TL and a large one 12.
I visited Istanbul, grand bazzar 2 years ago on a brief stop on a cruise. It's just a maze of shops & I loved it, unfortunatly time was short but an experiance, so much so I'm going back this year on another cruise to spend more time. We British are so used to paying the price that's marked but in this place it's just great fun to haggle.
It's an experiance that you shouldn't miss.
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The local bazaar….
A labyrinth covered in market stalls that are sometimes amazing, often though they’re tourist traps…
Be careful of what you buy, you’ll often find it at half the price a little bit further on…
Here you can find anything that you might want to bring back from Istanbul… gold jewellery (real, for the most part), spices, Turkish delight, boxes made with mother-of-pearl, ceramic decorated ashtrays, glasses for tea, but also fake designer bags and clothes (quite tempting really, as they’re mostly well made)…
Each stallholder will offer you a glass of tea, or Turkish delight… a real pleasure just to walk around and soak up the atmosphere!
This review has been translated from the original language.
We spent ALL DAY at the Grand Bazaar and I was in my element bargaining with the shopkeepers. The market has over 3000 shops selling everything from rugs, ottomans (or poufs, footstools), scarves, pashminas, jewellery, knock-off brand clothing, tea sets, and Turkish Delight.
Men of all ages from teenagers to the grey haired and stooping stand outside their shops calling out to get your attention and go and buy their wares. Most would just say “Hello” “lovely ladies” “Aussie Aussie” “good price for…”
We got lost in the maze of shops looking for a particular shop (the bazaar actually has streets and shop numbers because it’s so big!) but I got the few things I wanted - such a feeling of triumph – not only am I getting something practical and beautiful, but it’s at a bargain price.
Grand Bazaar or covered bazaar as we call it in turkish (Kapali Carsi) is the most authentic and colourful place in Istanbul I think. Ofcourse it’s touristic and the shop owners try to reach every possible customer who passes by they shout in every language they “speak” and try to gain your attention. Mostly they take my husband for the turk and me for the tourist and then I answer back in turkish which surprise them. Sometimes we talk only in german so that we can find out if they make a difference between turkish customers and foreigners, unfortunately some really do.
What I like in the Grand Bazaar is that it is not only for tourists, most of the things you will only find there so you go there once in a while either to buy silver, gold, copper, antiques, leather or old carpets.
And for me the amazing part is the Spice Bazaar so called Egyptian Bazaar (MISIR Carsisi) where you can first taste and then buy dry fruits, nuts, all kinds of spices like henna, safran etc., turkish cheese, turkish sucuk and pastirma, lokum, turkish coffee, other specialties.
There you feel that you are alive and all your senses are awake. Don’t miss Pandeli Restaurant, the best real home-made turkish food in town.
doritvirtuell, 12 September 2008:
Pirchner, 13 September 2008:
lesen vielleicht schon, aber kaum verstehen ;-))
kigo, 13 September 2008:
Ich bleib doch beim Englischen;-)
bluesofty, 16 September 2008:
Fascinating isn’t it? When in Souks, I get spoken to in swedish, and I laugh and reply in German. They then speak to me in German, so I change to English or French! I love playing this game…I was in Tunisie and no one knew my nationality…
When entering the bazaar you will be expecting to go home with some bargain antique, authentic, original turkish things. But that is not the case, most of the stuff is modern boring and if they know you are a tourist they will rip you off.
Look a bit further and harder and you might find something you like inwhich case HAGGLE. You will always be able to know some off the asking price. I came home from here with a box of Turkish delight (ask for a sample) and a fez.
With over 4000 shops, the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul is one of the world’s largest covered markets. Eat a big breakfast, but on your haggling hat, be prepared to spend hours, stop frequently for tea and to calm your nerves, and don’t forget your baggage allowance for your flight home!
Yes, it’s one massive tourist trap, but it’s a fun one. And you don’t have to buy anything (but this is not a safe place for compulsive shoppers).
You’ll find all sorts of arty-crafty stuff: leather goods, copperware, silverware, costumes, textiles, carpets, clothes, shoes, lamps, ceramics, books, food: it goes on and on.
Luckily it’s completely covered, so you can shop whatever the weather.
What I really like about The Grand Bazzar in Istanbul, is that it isn’t primarily a tourist market. It’s like a 600 year old shopping mall that sells anything that’s portable enough to be carried away. This is not a historical relic but a thriving buisness centre. As a tourist, you are very much in a minority, albeit a very attractive minority to the vocal shopkeepers.
Think imitation Levi jeans suspended next to 16th century mosaic ceilings.
When I visited the market I came specifficaly looking for clothes to take back home. I had been in the Middle East for around four months, so was a little inured to the charms of Eastern markets and architecture. Here though I found all the clothes I wanted at great prices but also found an exciting living example of Eastern market culture.
Compared to other places I visited - particularly the khan al khalili in Cairo and the alhamedya souk in Damascus, they really speak perfect English in the Grand Bazzar and have a much more acurate knowledge of the Western tourist. The benefit of this obviously is that it’s much easier to communicate what you do or don’t want. The negatives are that they know how much money you are capable of paying and are much more pushy and persuasive with their sales techniques.
The first time I went to Istanbul it was on the Orient Express. Ok it didn’t exist really except the first train..we had to frequently change trains and it was 3 1/2 days from Weisbaden.
It truly was like a James Bond experience but that’s another story.
Istanbul had so much to see that is wonderful but go to the Grand Bazzar first in case you want to have something made.
There are supposedly 4000 shops and restraunts and it could take you all day to go round. it is big! It has 64 streets,25.000 employees, 4 fountains, 2 mosques and 22 gates.
Many of the stalls in the bazaar are grouped by type of good, with regions for leather coats, gold jewelry and the like.
Sometimes you don’t have to leave a shop. You will be looking at say shoes and they give you refreshments..turkish coffee, chai, shertbert.. and ask what you are buying today. The always have an uncles, cousins, brothers friend..and as you drink your coffee they will start turning up. One unrolled a carpet containing gold jewellery.
Now jewellery oh yes. You can buy beautiful stuff (cheaper if you pay in dollars) but beware. The gold is 24ct (very soft but lovely red gold) and the stones are NOT real. They are lab created. They look real and only a jeweller will know. If you buy an Alexandrite ring know that in reality the stone alone would be 14K on the open market so for £20 haha! (jeweller talking here).
You see kids scurrying around the bazzar, not only with trays of drinks, carrying bars of gold!
I bought heeled Turkish slippers for peanuts and I wear them as evening shoes..they are so beautiful.
Go for the leather goods..so cheap!
I wanted a blue suede coat. I ordered it. Drew my own design on a piece of paper, they measured me, and paid. They promised to bring it to my hotel. The day came to leave and it had not arrived. We got on the train and I said well I lost nothing much paying for it. Suddenly I saw a guy runninglike crazy along the platform and as the train pulled out he handed me my coat. It was perfect!
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. BUT, if you want respect, you must haggle down the price! Go from shop to shop..say they said it costs..get the price down. You can always go back to the first and say I can get it at…for…
the number of visitors each day probably more than 250.000. The first part of the bazaar was constructed in 1461 under Mehmet The Conqueror. It was apparently a harem and a stable.
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Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi Tahmis Sokak 66, ggü. Gewürzbasar, 34440 İstanbul
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