Mısır Çarşısı – Egyptian Bazaar

An absolute must for any visitor to Istanbul is the Egyptian Bazaar. Here you can find every type of spice you can imagine. The market received this name as Egypt was once part of the Ottoman Empire and all spices as well as coffee were transported from there to Istanbul. As in all oriental countries, there are often separate markets for different products; and as all the spices came from Egypt, this market received the name: Mısır Çarşısı (Egyptian Market or Egyptian Bazaar).

Today the covered market is one of the largest in Istanbul and as you walk through its narrow passages, you can get a good feel of the Orient and enjoy the exotic scents. It’s a good idea to buy spices from the bazaar to take home. However, as in all markets in Turkey, it is important to negotiate a good price for any products.

Tips for negotiating a good price at a Turkish bazaar

  • Always create the impression that you do not need the products being offered and show the trader that you have little or no interest in their products.
  • Traders often invite you to a cup of tea. This does not carry an obligation to buy anything.
  • If you decide to negotiate, set the starting price as low as possible. If you make no progress, politely break off the negotiations and walk away.
  • Frequently, a trader will call you back. This is the moment to reach a compromise. Always bear in mind: No trader in the bazaar ever sells anything at a loss.

In HandsOnTurkish.com you can find out more about the Egyptian Bazaar and other cultural topics.