After the Grand Bazaar, the second largest and oldest surviving covered bazaar in Istanbul is the Spice Bazaar. It was built as part of the New Mosque (Yeni Valide Camii) complex at the southern end of the Galata Bridge in Eminönü district. The complex spanned around 45,000 square meters, containing a marketplace, primary school, public baths, hospital, tomb, and two public fountains.
In order to maintain the Mosque and its public facilities, rental incomes from marketplaces were of great importance in providing the necessary finances. This was a common practice amongst most Mosques in Ottoman and Islamic cultures. The Spice Bazaar was completed one year after the completion of the New Mosque in 1664. It is situated on an area of 6,000 square meters and has a unique Ottoman market architecture in the shape of an “L”. It has 86 shops which can be accessed through six different gates.
Since its construction, the Spice Bazaar has been known by several names, such as Valide Sultan Bazaar, New Bazaar, and Egyptian Market. However, the two names that it is most commonly referred to as are Spice Bazaar and Egyptian Market. The latter name is due to the fact that taxes collected from Cairo, Egypt were used to fund its construction during the Ottoman Empire. As its name suggests, the Spice Bazaar offers a vast array of herbs and spices from Turkey and other parts of the world.
According to historical records, the current location of the Spice Bazaar was once home to another market place called Makro Envalos during the Byzantine Empire. This wouldn’t be so surprising since it was a strategic harbour where trading was conducted by ships. If you are planning a visit to Istanbul, be sure to include the Spice Bazaar on your itinerary to experience this unique market place.
Here are 10 reasons why Mısır Çarşısı should be included in your Istanbul tour:
1. Spice Bazaar is a must-see for tourists, as it is one of the most famous places in the city.
2. Located in Eminonu, the main square of Istanbul, the old Egyptian market is easily accessible by public transport.
3. You will find a wide selection of spices, herbs, nuts, and dried fruits in the colorful istanbul bazaar.
4. Additionally, it is home to a variety of souvenirs such as jewelry, carpets, and pottery.
5. The lively atmosphere of the Mısır Çarşı is enhanced by its bustling vendors.
6. Prices are quite reasonable and you can even bargain with the vendors.
7. Visiting the spices bazaar is a great way to learn about Turkish culture and cuisine.
8. Many of the spices and herbs are used in traditional Turkish dishes.
9. There are also numerous restaurants and cafes, where you can sample Turkish delicacies.
10. Finally, Spice Bazaar is the perfect place to get a unique souvenir and to experience a vivid part of Istanbul.
If you‘re looking to experience a unique and vibrant part of Istanbul, then look no further than the Spice Bazaar. Tour Maker Turkey offers tours of the Spice Bazaar and other historic sites in Istanbul, allowing you to explore and experience the city in an immersive and authentic way. Contact us today to book your tour and get ready to explore the Spice Bazaar like never before!