Turkey Culture

Spice Market

Istanbul’s Egyptian (Spice) Bazaar is located at the southern end of the Galata Bridge near the Eminönü ferry docks. There you can find your fill of spices, dried fruits, nuts, seeds and turkish delights (a special chewy candy of various flavors that is covered with powdered sugar).   I knew what I turkish delight was from watching “Narnia,” and it was oh so delightful!

Grand Bazaar

Located in the shopping district of Istanbul, the Grand Bazaar is famous throughout the world as a favorite spot for locals and tourists to come to shop. It is one of the largest and oldest markets in the world and covers more than 58 streets with 4000 shops. Most shoppers come to buy textiles and gold. One of the most popular souvenirs found around Turkey and at the bazaar is the Turkish “evil eye” known for attracting evil thoughts and keeping you safe if the evil eye is nearby.  I will have to warn you (mostly ladies) that the men at the markets are quite the salesmen.  Don’t ever buy something without bartering and don’t let all their tricks and pick up lines draw you into their stand (or, if you like attention- go right ahead and enter!).

Turkish Rugs

Turkey is also known for their handmade rugs. Nakkas is one of the best rug makers in Turkey and has won many awards. The rugs can be very expensive because they really take a long time to construct and the cost is based on how many knots per square inch. I was able to see a rug at Nakkas that took 9 years to finish and was $110,000 USD.  If you are really interested in buying a nice rug, Turkey is the place to do it, however make sure you ask around and get some second opinions before you spend hefty cash.