Arasta Bazaar


Torun Sokak, Arasta Carsisi No:107, Sultanahmet
Sultanahmet. Entrance on Topçu Cad. (across from the Blue House hotel) and on Küçük Ayasofya Çad
Istanbul, Turkey

NileGuide Expert tip:

Do visit the Mosaic Museum inside.


Arasta Bazaar is like a mini "Grand Bazaar / Covered Market" selling mostly hand-crafted items. There are approximately 70 shops inside the Arasta Bazaar (which in reality is a line of shops neatly lined up on both ends of a long street). Shops are selling beautiful hand-made carpets, souvenirs, antiques and gifts. Arasta Bazaar is less hectic and much less crowded when compared to the Grand Bazaar, because the tourists usually know less of it.

Bazaars of Istanbul were once a high-mark of the neighborhoods of the city. Each neighborhood had its own mosque and near the mosque had its own bazaar called the arasta. Arasta Bazaar takes its name after these bazaars. The functionality of these bazaars was to make money for the maintenance of the mosque and the pious foundations. Most of the bazaars were destroyed during the final days of the Ottoman Era and during the establishment of the Turkish Republic -during the build-up of the new infrastructure. Arasta Bazaar is one of the important bazaars, after Grand Bazaar, Spice Market and Sahaflar Carsisi, remaining from early Ottoman Periods. The Mosaic Museum is also inside Arasta Bazaar.


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