Shopping Tour of Istanbul (Self Guided), Istanbul

Istanbul can easily claim to be one of the most interesting cities in the world. Located on the very edge of Europe, it later expanded into Asia resulting in a mixture of both cultures. When it comes to shopping you will be amazed by the variety of goods you can buy here and the way everybody bargains - even in the grocery store. Take this tour and explore the legendary bazaars and the hidden shops of Istanbul.
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Shopping Tour of Istanbul Map

Guide Name: Shopping Tour of Istanbul
Guide Location: Turkey » Istanbul (See other walking tours in Istanbul)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 5
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles
Author: kane
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Arasta Bazaar

1) Arasta Bazaar

Arasta Bazaar is a well-known bazaar in Istanbul. If you're tired of the huge crowds of the Grand Bazaar, but you're willing to buy carpets, jewelry or even spices, Arasta Bazaar is the best place to come.

Operation hours: Monday - Saturday 9 am – 7 pm.
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Grand Bazaar

2) Grand Bazaar (must see)

One of the oldest bazaars in the world, the Grand Bazaar or the Kapalicarsi (“covered bazaar”) has more than fifty-eight covered streets and more than four thousand shops. Anywhere from a quarter to half a million visitors visit the bazaar daily.

The Grand Bazaar was built from 1455 to 1461 and has been open ever since. It is famed for its exquisite Turkish jewelry, silver decoration pieces, spices, Turkish delight (a famous Turkish sweet), pottery and carpet shops. Visitors can also find leather goods, gold and diamond jewelry, and clothing in its various sections.

The bazaar is famous for the “Turkish Evil Eye” – an amulet made of blue and white glass considered to ward off evil. Almost every street has an “evil eye” stall, with many variations of the amulet being sold to tourists.

Originally the bazaar contained bedestens, which are domed structures used for storage, and was enlarged during the 16th century. After a major earthquake in 1894, the bazaar went under major restoration. Today, the Grand Bazaar contains two hammams (Turkish baths), two mosques, four fountains, as well as many cafes and restaurants.

Why You Should Visit:
The bazaar's centuries-old history can still be seen from the countless frescoes on the many ceiling arches and ancient columns; however, the main charm lies in its chaotic organization. Every turn is full of unexpected surprises – you will never know what you will find! No purchase is necessary to join this festivity.

Tip:
If you are in need of Turkish Lira cash, this is an excellent place to exchange.
Be prepared to walk away if the seller does not agree with your asking price (and watch what will happen next!).

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9am-7pm
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Misir Carsisi (Egyptian Spice Market)

3) Misir Carsisi (Egyptian Spice Market)

The Egyptian Spice Market is one of the most famous bazaars in Istanbul. Here you can find almost any spice in Europe and Asia. This is due to the fact that the Egyptian Spice Market was the terminus of the world famous Silk Route. From ancient times, goods from India traveled through Egypt(the reason behind the market's name) to get to Istanbul, from where they were re-distributed into Europe.

Operation hours: Monday- Friday: 8 am- 7 pm; Saturday: 8 am- 7:30 pm; Sunday: 9:30 am- 7 pm.
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Ali Muhiddin Haci Bekir

4) Ali Muhiddin Haci Bekir

Ali Muhiddin Haci Bekir offers the best choice for any visitor to Istanbul interested in trying the typical Turkish desert - lokum. Actually, the reason why this is the best store to buy it from, is simply that it was founded by the person who invented lokum - Ali Muhiddin.
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Karakoy Fish Market

5) Karakoy Fish Market

Karakoy Fish Market is the best place to buy fish in Istanbul. If you want to practice your bargaining skills or have the best fresh sea food at the lowest price possible - Karakoy Fish Market is the place to go. You can also come and see how the locals do it and get a glimpse into their every-day life.

Walking Tours in Istanbul, Turkey

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Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
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Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
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Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.5 km
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Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
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Mosques Walking Tour

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Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
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Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


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Istanbul, known throughout history as Byzantium and Constantinople, has been a major center of commerce and trade, a place where merchants and general folk would rush to regularly in search of exotic things. In our days, modern travelers to Istanbul are also bound to enjoy a truly magnificent...