02 August 2012

The Grand Bazaar

Both Lauren and I have posted about Turkey. Lauren most recently when she was on R&R, and I a couple years ago (really just reread all of November and December 2010!!) so when I was in Istanbul last week for work I wondered if there was really anything left to post about? Of course there was. There always is. I think I may have touched only a little on the Spice and Grand Bazaars in one or two of my posts so this seems the perfect time to go a little more in depth.

But before we get there; just a little bit about the rest of my trip. I was there to spend money; that was the purpose of my work trip. And it's not as much fun as you might think. But because the purpose was to spend money, I stayed in one of the higher end hotels.

That is what $10,000 looks like

View from my hotel in Taksim

View of Taksim Square

Ahh lovely sunset

My hotel has no 13th floor. Just because it's not listed doesn't mean it's not there. 
Despite the busy work schedule, I did get out a little. Thankfully, for me anyway, Turkey is secular enough that even during Ramadan restaurants and shops are open for business. Many places had set menus during iftar and large crowds gathered on the lawn in front of the Blue Mosque to celebrate picnic iftar every evening. I'm so glad I'm Catholic.

Public iftar in front of the Blue Mosque

Ramadan Krispy Kremes. Yes this happened.

So speaking of food...that's what most of my happy moments were about on this trip.

I don't even know what this was but it was yummy.

Turkey has the best baklava

Burek = true happiness

But back to the bazaar! I maintain that you really shouldn't ever buy anything in the Grand Bazaar-that better prices can be had just about anywhere else in the city; but it sure is fun to walk around. Basically, if you want it, they've got it.

So tempted by these hand painted bottles.

Who doesn't want a bejeweled elephant?!
Godiva...because I guess the Grand Bazaar is the best place for it?

The Grand Bazaar is theoretically sectioned off by ware. In some cases that's true like the few streets that are all about leather goods and the street that houses Godiva is where all the really pricey gold is; but really everything just gets a little jumbled up.

Of course Turkish delights everywhere.
What is salad spice anyway?

Better at the Spice Bazaar but they're here too.

Textiles of all sorts, from scarves to bellydance costumes and jeans are everywhere. Mostly scarves though. There are SO MANY scarves.

The inevitable scarves.
Boots made out of muppets. Best guess.

I'm determined that I will move to Turkey one day and furnish my place entirely out of things I find at the market. All the lamps and mosaiced candle holders make me drool. They're just so shiny and pretty!

Want the blue ones!

Those three big ones are like twice the size of my head.

Although I think using Turkish ceramics for everything might be a little cumbersome...not to mention wildly expensive.

Betting none of this is micorwavable.

Hand painted awesomeness

And naturally I will need separate Turkish tea and coffee sets. Because...well why wouldn't I? It's a proven fact that drinking out of elaborate vessels makes things taste better.

The bazaar itself is just fun to look at. The high arched ceilings, painted arches, windows, and sloping floors, and cafes give this maze-like market place something of a magical feel.

One of the fountains that still provide the market with water.

The everything shops often have hidden gems.

Like I said, don't buy here...but walk around and enjoy!

1 comment:

Mia said...

I tried the ol' google to figure out what is in salad spice and I've got nothing. Surely other people have asked this question?