During the month of February I took a trip to Istanbul – which has become one of my favorite places I’ve traveled to. The history, the friendly people, the food, the weather and the attractions of Istanbul blew me away upon my arrival. Having Turkish family I could see where I’ve gotten some of the characteristics and passion for business and being an entrepreneur. I booked the trip for a 7 day stay and still it wasn’t enough time to cover more of the history and attractions, but at least I left satisfied and content that I was able to cover the major landmarks of Istanbul which I will get into detail on a later blog post.
Due that I was extremely tired and still jet lagged, I decided to do one of the major attractions that didn’t require much of me but I still wanted to visit a popular landmark of Istanbul where plenty of history has been made and it’s also located in the Faith District of Istanbul. I decided to visit the Spice Bazaar, which is considered the second largest covered shopping complex after the Grand Bazaar in which I also had the great pleasure to visit & will share my thoughts on the two and how do they compare.
Here is a visual as I am entering the Bazaar while seeing the hundreds of stores side by side and getting greeted by the fellow locals – as they say “Merhaba” which means Hello in Turkish. 😉
- Prepare to be approached by all the vendors. They normally hang out outside their stores. They will greet you and welcome you to enter the store. If you aren’t wanting to go in, simply say “No Thank you”.
- Keep in mind that normally the first few stores within the entrance are the most expensive and I am not just saying this. The stores further up were cheaper and they carried the same items as the first few stores.
- You aren’t forced to buy anything but they will try to sell you items you seem to show some “interested on”. If you do like the item ask them “how much”? Normally, the first price they give you it’s the highest, so don’t be afraid of asking them to give you a better deal. For them it’s more important to make the sell, rather than losing it.
- Most of the store owners will welcome you to the store and let you sample some of their turkish delights and items they have in the store, you won’t be required to pay for it after you try it – just incase you were wondering.
- As I was walking around the Bazaar one of the store owners overheard my conversation with my mom and heard that I love tea, thats when my obsession and love for Turkish Tea started. Before I bought the tea he let me sample it and he also offered me to try different flavors of tea. I would recommend getting the following flavors: Green apple and Pomegranate, simply delicious.
- Last but not least, if you are a fan of Caviar you will find the best of the best which is Beluga Caviar at a great price.
My mom was my travel buddy throughout the trip & I was enjoying my Turkish Tea before buying a few boxes of it. 😉
- Everyone is extremely friendly at The Bazaar and there is no danger – as security is always around and patrolling the location.
Take a look at the great variety of Spices & goodies.
Bottom line and final thoughts – Without a doubt, my first day of exploring Istanbul was simply incredible. The Bazaar experience was one of a kind and I enjoyed my visit. Aside the Bazaar you will be able to explore other major sights of Istanbul within the Faith district. The prices at The Bazaar were reasonable and you will be able to find more products for sell besides spices such as key chains, tea cups, etc.
For those who have visited Istanbul, were you able to visit the Spice Bazaar or Grand Bazaar? What are your thoughts?