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Istanbul Grand Bazaar Excursion Reviews

Home > Member Reviews > Istanbul Shore Excursions > Grand Bazaar

Istanbul's Grand Bazaar, once the center of trade for the Ottoman Empire, is one of the largest markets in the world with more than 3,000 shops covering 61 streets.

cosmics

1 review

massive.. interesting to see if left to browse in peace with you are not.


Provider: Celebrity Cruises

canuck1669

1 review

Can't go to Istanbul without visiting. Really not enough time to fully explore (45 minutes) Thought it would be more like an outdoor market with stalls etc. More like an indoor shopping mall with stores. Allow at lease two hours or more to explore.


Provider: Independent Operator

Graham K

2 reviews

One of THE most full-on, mad, bustling, hustling, crazy, draining cities I've ever visited...and this is coming from an ex-Londoner! Not for the shy and retiring, it's a fully charged head-rush of ancient colliding with ultra modern. Breakneck pace of life, literally teams upon teams of pestering hustlers jump on you the minute they can, and from then on, you're targeted until you're finally fleeced by the taxi driver on your journey back to the port.
WORD OF WARNING...if you visit Ismir, DO NOT get a ride from the taxi drivers swarming around the terminal...they phone ahead, drop you off, where upon the door is opened by one of their acquaintances that just happen to own a leather shop. Planned hustle par excellence. BE WARNED!


Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

bjrose

2 reviews

I thought this place was disgusting with nothing but junk to buy. The merchants were so rude to us, in fact. One said, "you Americans should go back home. Don't buy here. We don't want you." And, we were with 2 others and we hadn't said a word! It was most disconcerting and upsetting. It is so dirty over there and not somewhere I would ever buy anything.


Provider: Independent Operator

sueajp

4 reviews

It was a little crazy!!! You could easily get lost and we were on our own here following the carpet demonstration. We stayed on the main road since it was a maze! We were approached to buy but not harassed as I thought we might. We tried some savory treats and bought just a few things..


Provider: Princess Cruises

prinsjh

2 reviews

This is really phenomenal. If you are a shopper, this is not to be missed. Thousands of stalls and vendors everywhere you stroll.


Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

CarolynAustralia

1 review

The Bosphorus Cruise was great and then we got to see the Spice Market (AMAZING!) and the Grand Bazaar (Not so amazing!)


Provider: Celebrity Cruises

Surfari1

1 review

Very enjoyable with rich colours and frangrances. Enjoyed haggling with the store owners. Some even spoke Afrikaans!


Provider: Holland America Line

Cruise XYZ

3 reviews

Not a favorite place


Provider: Princess Cruises

JLU917

1 review

Not my cup of tea. Too big and overwhelming. And we really dislike merchants' "in your face" salesmanship.

Provider: Independent Operator

Banjo_uk

2 reviews

After having been to the Souks in Marrakech, I was a little dissapointed at theis place.

Provider: MSC Cruises

EIslander

1 review

This is pretty cool. You get to haggle for goods, but more than likely, you'll pay too much for cheap stuff.

Provider: MSC Cruises

Pezzy

1 review

Too many stores with the same stuff. Have to bargain. Never know if you are really getting a good deal but worth the time to see it

Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

DURSEYGIRL

2 reviews

Too much time at the carpet factory showroom and not enough at the Grand bazaar.

Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

sadied

2 reviews

do on your own if you dare. you will be hassled to death and so confused you will want to flee. I would only shop here with a Turkish friend.

Provider: Holland America Line

Kallisto

1 review

Grand bazaar is a touristic happening, but not to be missed. You can bargain quite good.

Provider: Costa Cruises

JemIB66

5 reviews

The Grand Bazaar was fascinating and very colourful. It's a great pity that we were only given 20 minutes to look around.

Provider: MSC Cruises

kangarooboy

6 reviews

This was part of our deal of sights in Istanbul but we ran out of time & only had 20 minutes in the bazaar.However we felt it was more important to see Hagia Sofia,Blue Mosque & Topkapi palace.

Provider: Cunard Line

Annalise

7 reviews

Surprisingly I loved Istanbul. I was not expecting to see this modern, bustling city. Our guide, Sertan, was very informative. We saw a demonstration of how Turkish rugs are handmade.The weaving is done by hand and passed on through generations. Final stop was the Grand Bazaar which has been very modernized. Glass storefronts down endless corridors sold jewelry, leather,clothing,hooka pipes and boxed candy called Turkish Delight. Sheer size of bazaar was intimidating to say the least.Lots of sellers in the streets trying to get you to buy anything and everything.


Provider: Princess Cruises

icini

1 review

Great place. No guide provided for Bazaar and easy to get lost.

Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

jabbathehutte

1 review

Easy to get lost, it is so big

Provider: Cunard Line

kingrodney

1 review

The Grand Bazaar was worth seeing but we found it was all a bit rushed and an all abit samey after a while. The jewelery was amazing and had to be seen to be believed. We ventured outside the Grand Bazaar after a while and it was much more interesting. We didn't venture too far though as we were worried we'd get lost and that would have been quite easy.

Provider: Princess Cruises

klitz

1 review

Enormous array of shops. There are many intriguing specialty shops, although many of the shops sell the same junk. Bargain hard.

Provider: Independent Operator

rossgregg

1 review

Too crowded. All the same stores up and down the isles. Merchants are very aggressive.

Provider: Holland America Line

Crui$erCT

2 reviews

We actually enjoyed the Grand Bazaar a lot. We expected to be bothered by the shopkeepers calling out to us, but these interruptions were few and far between. In the stalls where we bought scarves, ceramics & food, the vendors were very friendly and helpful. The reason we didn't rate this stop above a 3 is because our tour guide took us to a "cultural demonstration" of rugmaking. There was NO demonstration; rather, there was a brief explanation of of the Turkish style of rugmaking and then about 30 rugs were rolled at our feet with the expectation that we would buy something after drinking the proffered tea. When we said thank you and goodbye without purchasing anything, we got cold stares, but no rude badgering to buy, thankfully. Our tour guide should have asked us whether we were interested in buying a carpet; we would have told her no. Luckily it was over in about 30 mins.

Provider: Independent Operator

wismergirl

3 reviews

We were given over 2 hours to spend at the Grand Bazaar which is one of the oldest and biggest covered markets in the world. There were close to 60 covered streets. We spent a lot of time at one store to buy many of those ceramic Turkish dishes, kept bargaining until we got 8 small (2") ones for US$10. Then I bought some silk book marks with Turkish patterns or attractions on for US$1 each. There were lots of stores that sold Turkish costumes like bra and belt sets. My friends bought 2 leather jackets there with instant alterations while they waited.

Provider: Independent Operator

World Gallery

12 reviews

Did this was a private guide and felt like we learn about it's history and got to see more of the athentic vendors. Our kids loved it here. Get some turkish delights here. Our kids enjoyed trying these.

Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line

Artteacher

2 reviews

Do not venture off the main thoroughfare unless you have GPS navigation - and remember, even if you say 'no' you are actually opening a negotiaion - just walk away, they totally expect it and it's not rude.

Provider: Celebrity Cruises

baillie

1 review

Istanbul took the 8 hour trip off the boat...saw lots of sites. One issue was the tour guide when we where going in for the rug demonstration would not tell us what time we all had to meet back up. After the rug demonstration found out we had to meet back up in 15 minutes....this left me 15 minutes to go into the grand bazaar! My main reason for going to Istanbul. Great disappointment. Kusadasi, this is a must see port. Not enough room here to discuss.

Provider: Princess Cruises

Twinmum

2 reviews

We booked a tour that really gave us a taste of Istanbul and some of it's culture, which was great because it was a port we would never have thought to go to ourselves. The bazaar is unbelievably huge with 4,000 shops and stalls and we would have loved many more hours to peruse and bargain here.

Provider: Princess Cruises

msupovitz

1 review

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