History Shops in Turkey
From past to present, we investigated the Historical Bazaar in Turkey for you. As you travel through these magnificent architectural masterpieces that are decorated with the spice-scented twists and gold-shining shops of the leading historical bazaars of our country, people are lost in history.
Historical bazaars were places where the people met their daily needs during the Seljuk and Ottoman periods and the heart of trade and life were beating. Besides their commercial purpose, they were the places where cultural and socio-economic relations came to life. Today, the historical bazaars, which are in large numbers in the cities that have been the capital of the Seljuk and Ottoman Empire, have reached to date with the restoration works they have undergone over time. They continue this mission, which they have undertaken throughout history, today.
Yazı İçeriği / Index
- Historical Bazaars and Markets
- Historical Bazaars in Istanbul
- Grand Bazar
- Spice Bazaar
- Historical Bazaar in Other Turkey’s Cities
Historical Bazaars and Markets
In this article, we visit the historical bazaars in the land of Paradise Homeland Anatolia, which is home to many powerful civilizations throughout the ages with its long history. Almost all of them are in the historical center of the city where they are located. Historical bazaars in Istanbul are located on the historical peninsula, that is, on the borders of today’s Fatih district. This is not only valid for Istanbul. Today, it is possible to come across at least one historical bazaar in Konya, Ankara, Trabzon, Diyarbakır, Edirne, Erzurum, Çanakkale and many more cities.
Historical Bazaars in Istanbul
The historical city, a world city that has been the capital of the Ottoman State for centuries. Istanbul, which has been the heart of trade and economy throughout history, continues this duty with the status of a leading city today. Let’s take a little stroll in the historical bazaars of Istanbul.
The Covered Bazaar, which is located in the Beyazıt district of the Fatih district of Istanbul and which has taken its place in the first place in the ranking of the oldest bazaars in the world, is the Grand Bazaar. The Grand Bazaar, pronounced in English, is the Grand Bazaar. Covering money, that is, gold in the Ottoman period, the Grand Bazaar works similarly today.
History of the Grand Bazaar
This masterpiece, which is the heart of the gold, jewelery and consumption sector, was built in the time of Fatih Sultan Mehmet Han. When it could not meet the needs in the following years, it has been transformed into its current form with the additions made in the period of Kanuni. After the restorations in the Republican era after the Ottoman Empire, it challenged the time spent with an average of 500 thousand visitors a day in the summer season and 90 million visitors a year.
Sections of the Covered Bazaar
There are 2 mosques, 21 inns, 65 streets, 2 bedestres, 7 fountain fountains, a well and a fountain and a clock tower in the historical Grand Bazaar complex. In addition, the Grand Bazaar continues to be the cornerstone of trade with approximately 3500 shops, stores and 25,000 employees. Although most of them are jewelery and jewelery shops; It hosts many different trade branches such as carpets, rugs, fabrics, leather, silver, textiles, porcelain products, souvenir shops, change offices. It has 18 doors where you can enter the historical Istanbul Grand Bazaar.
How to get to the Grand Bazaar?
– Beyazıt IETT is where the last stops of the Grand Bazaar are located. You can go to the Grand Bazaar with IETT buses (36, 36ES, 97, 38, 38Z etc.) going to Beyazı, or you can easily get to the Grand Bazaar from the main door by taking the Tramway again. – When you arrive by sea or by Marmaray, you can go up from the Sirkeci – Eminönü area and reach the lower entrance of the Grand Bazaar.
In the Ottoman period, new zoning areas were opened as a result of the stone filling of Haliç by Eminönü and Karaköy. Valide Sultan built a new mosque in the area on the Eminönü side, one of these new zoning areas, and its front is still used as a boulevard. Just behind the “New Mosque” (Yeni Cami) is the main entrance gate of the historic Spice Bazaar.
It is a bazaar where mostly spice-weighted products are sold compared to the Grand Bazaar. Over time, cheeses, fishermen, dried nuts and pet shops were opened with additions to the areas outside. Some parts of the illegal city were demolished last year and the real appearance of the Spice Bazaar was revealed.
History of the Spice Bazaar
The Egyptian Bazaar, which was planned as a complex building next to Yeni Mosque in 1597 and started to serve as a mosque in 1667, is to be one of the hundreds of spices, condiments, transfer plants, flowers, seeds, plant roots, shells, natural medicines, herbs, nuts, marshmallows and sweets. Today, it continues to serve with around 80-90 shops. It is one of the favorite places of local and foreign tourists in Istanbul. Shopping especially here before the month of Ramadan has become a ritual for people.
It got its name from the Tahtakale district in Eminönü, on the historical peninsula of Istanbul. Today, Tahtakale, which has become a center of attraction for contract products, was the place that comes to mind when it comes to the free market for foreign currency and gold, especially in the 90’s. You know, there were men in his ear talking with 2-3 antennae phones, shouting, holding dollars and foreign currency in their hands. Here it is here :). With the spread of the internet in the early 2000s, they became history.
Those who live in Istanbul know; Mercan is known as Tahtakale, which is among the Hasırcılar office. Nowadays, it is a market where you can find almost all kinds of mobile phones and electronic products. In this historical bazaar, which is the center of both import and export, people are lost for hours.
It is of great commercial importance in the Byzantine and Roma periods as in the Ottoman Empire. There is a big but sweet chaos in the historical inns. It is difficult to understand this without tasting the atmosphere of the Khan.
Old Books Bazaar (Sahaflar Çarşısı)
As the name suggests, there are shops selling books in the market located between the Grand Bazaar and Beyazıt Mosque. Antiquarian is the name given to booksellers in the old language. Turkey’s Istanbul even where the oldest antiquarian bookstore often Bazaar “Sarraf Bazaar” or “Sahafçı” to be able to pronounce it. However, this is a completely false statement.
Sahaf: Bookshop, – sahaflar: the place where books are sold.
Sarraf: The name given to precious stones, gold and jewelery masters.
Sahaflar Bazaar is located in the Grand Bazaar, which was built in the 15th century. However, during the big Istanbul earthquake that took place in the late 1800s, the Grand Bazaar also suffered greatly, and with the restoration works, the Sahafcilar (Bookshop) Bazaar is completely separated from the Grand Bazaar and becomes an independent building.
The sale of a non-book product has not been allowed since the day it was made. Today, this tradition is continued and the damage to its historical texture is prevented. The goers of the Sahaflar market know; The booksellers are well-equipped people, each full of experience and knowledge, like a life professor. In addition to new books, you can find books that are considered as old and even antique books and are of historical art.
Coppersmith Bazaar (Bakırcılar Çarşısı)
Istanbul Beyazıt district is the meeting point of historical bazaars. It is possible to find almost every form of copper in Bakırcılar Bazaar in Fatih Beyazıt. You can find almost all kinds of copper goods in Istanbul Bakırcılar Bazaar, which can be found in cities such as Mardin, Urfa and Diyarbakır in Anatolia. We see the effect of cultural reflections mostly on handmade artistic products.
Bakircilar Bazaar is one of the places where you can find copper teapots, pots, bowls, plates, glasses, forks, spoons, knives and many other copper items in Istanbul. It is located next to the current Istanbul University (which is the Army Command building in the Ottoman State) in the Ottoman period. It is close to the Grand Bazaar.
We did not even go out from Beyazıt, let alone Fatih, while describing the historical bazaars of Istanbul. While going from Çemberlitaş to the Sultanahmet Cami (Blue Mosque), the shops on the right and left of the tramway constitute the Çemberlitaş Bazaar. Turkish delights, cezerye, sugar varieties, chocolate, coffee, nuts and souvenirs are sold in the shops and stores in Çemberlitaş Bazaar, which was established more recently than other bazaars. You can find cultural clothes such as fez and Kalpak in the shops that usually serve foreign tourists.
These shops continue to diversify from the Hagia Sophia down to the vinegar. Dessert shops, ravioli and observers are added. After Gülhane Park, it continues as a cafe and restaurant until Sirkeci Station.
I recommend you to walk this tram road starting from Çemberlitaş to Sirkeci on foot. It will remain a wonderful memory that you will spend time intertwined with history and Turkish culture. If you do not have the opportunity to walk, you can use this tram to visit this nostalgic road.
The historical Sarachane, which was considered as the center of heavy industry for centuries, also gave its name to the district where it is located. Saraçhane has the title of being the first Ottoman bazaar built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet in Istanbul after the conquest of Istanbul. Saraçhane Bazaar, which has managed to survive by challenging earthquakes and all natural disasters with nearly 100 shops, reflects the traditional Ottoman Architecture of the 15th century.
Arasta (Sipahi) Bazaar
Another name for the Arasta bazaar, which was built to meet the costs of the Sultanahmet Complex, located in the area where the Sultanahmet mosque is located, is Sipahi Bazaar. between the historic bazaars of Turkey it is not a well-known arcade. The reason is that he was completely ruined by the fire that broke out in the early 1900s and could not recover until the 80s. Today, there are shops selling cultural antiques in this bazaar, especially hand-woven carpets and rugs.
To revive this historical value, a platform is established and small prefabricated shops are opened in this area next to the Sultanahmet mosque during the month of Ramadan.
Historical Bazaar in Other Turkey’s Cities
We see a historic bazaars in almost every city while visiting Turkey. Each of them is from the Ottoman and Seljuk era and each has a completely different story.
İzmir Kemeraltı Bazaar
The construction and Hisar Mosque, which started with the filling of the sea towards the end of the 1500s, was built. Konak Square today belongs to the sea in ancient times. Today’s Konak square has emerged with the filling works carried out until today.
The historical Kemeraltı Bazaar, located in Konak district of Izmir, starts from the location of the famous clock tower in Konak square and stretches along the streets of Fevzipaşa and Eşrefpaşa. It is a place frequented by domestic and foreign tourists especially in summer season with its textiles, shoes, bags, processed genuine leather products, jewelery shops, bank branches and many other professions.
There is an idiom “If you put a needle, it will not fall to the ground” (a Turkish expression). I have witnessed that this statement came true many times in İzmir Kemeraltı bazaar. Thanks to the awnings and trees opening along the historical bazaar, Kemeraltı has been a cool harbor for those who escape from the burning Izmir sun.
Ankara Çıkrıkçılar and Ulus Flea Market (Bit Pazarı)
The Cikrikcilar Slope, which was opened in the Republican era that can be considered as a new history, is full of buildings with today’s architecture. If we make a comparison, it is similar to the street from Istanbul Eminönü to the Grand Bazaar where there are shops where wedding-henna materials are sold. Ulus district is the region where Ankara’s historical inns, Turkish baths, bazaars and markets are gathered. There is also the Ulus Flea Market (bit pazarı), which consists of a small number of antiques and spotters. Since it is quite suburban, it is not considered as one of the places that can be visited in Ankara. Instead, it would make sense to spend time in much nicer places to visit.
For example, I recommend you to visit the historical bazaar, which consists of shops and stores around Ankara Castle, and the Anafartalar Bazaar.
Another historical bazaar of Ankara is Hacı Bayram Veli Bazaar. It is one of the bazaars of Ankara, located between Ulus and Altındağ. Most of the shops selling pilgrimage materials and souvenirs consist of buildings with today’s architecture.
Çanakkale Aynalı (Çarşı) Bazaar
Çanakkale Aynalı Çarşı, opened by Jews at the end of the 1800s, is located on the Anatolian side of the city. A few years ago the streets and streets were completely renovated in accordance with the original. During World War I, bombs were the target and were heavily damaged. It has also become unusable as a result of attacks and plunder. With the special work of Çanakkale Municipality in the 1960s, the historical bazaar took its present form. The real name of the bazaar is “Passage Hallio”, that is Halyo Passage.
The bazaar was built entirely based on the Spice Bazaar in Istanbul. Aynalı Bazaar, which has a historical door at both ends, has a door opening to the courtyard in the middle part.
Erzurum Taş Han Tarihi Çarşısı (Old Stone Bazaar)
Its real name is Rüstem Pasha Caravanserai, but today it is known as Taşhan Bazaar in Erzurum. Rüstem Pasha is also the Grand Vizier of Suleiman the Magnificent. It is one of the iconic masterpieces of Ottoman stone architecture. Today, there are shops selling handmade products produced mostly from Oltu stone. You can buy oltu stone rosary, necklace, earrings and similar products when you come to Erzurum.
Gaziantep Sedefçiler (Sedefkar) Bazaar
In this historical bazaar we visited in Gaziantep, we have seen how the art of mother-of-pearl processing is professionally embroidered in jewelry, plates, bowls, cupboards, chests, wooden items and silver and even gold jewelery. Especially, a pearl integrated with wood has a shining appearance. The masters who do the job of Sedef are called Sedefkar. You witness the Sedefkars turning handicraft into art.
Şanlıurfa Grand Bazaar
As a reflection of the historical Mesopotamian culture, it meets the mystical atmosphere. Although it is located in a smaller area compared to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, it is enough to enchant us with its unique charm. The jingling of copper coffee pot, teapot and samovar, which keeps the local coffee and tea culture in particular, is still in my ears. When you come to Urfa, do not go to the covered bazaar where local spices and food are also sold.
Gaziantep Bakırcılar Bazaar
They say that the taste of the dish is different in copper containers. The food you eat from the copper plate and even the ayran that is drunk from the copper bowl is another. One of the places to visit during the Gaziantep tour is certainties Historical Bakircilar Bazaar. It is worth seeing its unique historical texture and the art of copper processing transferred from master to apprentice. When you enter the Coppersmith Bazaar, you will always remember the harmony and timbre of those hammer sounds that give life to copper.
“History Shops in Turkey” adlı bu yazı en son 30.09.2021 tarihinde güncellenmiştir.