We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Go to window shop, but don't buy!”
Review of Kapali Carsi

Kapali Carsi
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Jewelry Workshop at the Grand Bazaar
More Info
and up
Morning Istanbul: Half-Day Tour with Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome and...
More Info
and up
Istanbul Grand Bazaar and Egyptian Bazaar Shopping Tour
Ranked #31 of 1,105 things to do in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Bargaining for goods is standard practice at the largest covered market in Turkey, rumored to contain over 4,000 shops.
Reviewed September 3, 2011

The Grand Bazaar was interesting from a historic perspective, but is now nothing but a tourist trap. Mainly the same items over and over. We found no bargains for sure. We purchased 3 things and found problems with all of them:
1) Bought a beautiful satchel who's leather handle left brown stains on the shoulder of my daughter's new shirt. Adter several weeks, the handle continues to leave brown marks on clothing (which do not come out.)
2) Bought a beautiful lamp that I didn't realize had a European plug. Not a big problem because I could have just purchased an adapter to use the lamp, but then I found out that the lamp only takes a bulb size that they don't sell in the US! It was obvious that we were Americans, and this really should have been pointed out by the seller.
3) Bought beautiful leather ottomans that needed to be filled with stuffing once we got home. We did so, and within a week of use all the seams started to tear and stuffing is coming out everywhere.
Bottom line: everything they sell is pretty JUNK! Don't get ripped off.

2  Thank CTBeth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (9,283)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages

4,825 - 4,829 of 9,283 reviews

Reviewed September 2, 2011

The Turkish bazaar is a huge maze of shops and stalls best explored solo. There are too many things to buy, and it can be a hassle waiting for other people to browse, or to look for other people in the group who have wandered off. Prices are set to be bargained with.

Thank Agent226
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 29, 2011

There are many local malls in Istanbul you can visit, but why? Going to another country should give you some historic experience of another time and place.
The Grand Bazaar is a trip back in time--doing business for hundreds of years the same way.
The Turkish shopkeepers are nothing if not persistent--but they are so charming and have such a good attitude about it--you can't help but be amused by them and wish them well.
Even if they have sat you down, given you apple tea and shown you their wares--and for some reason you don't buy a thing--they do not give you attitude at all. They are gracious, hospitable people. I had so much fun seeing so many types of things for sale--especially the authentic shoe shine tables still used--I would have bought it but just too expensive to ship!

One word about their "genuine fakes"--you really have to know quality and know where to go. If you do your homework--you will get an item made better than the original. Their leather and workmanship is very good and many shops have quality--but you have to know which ones.

Otherwise--it is the most fun shopping I have ever had--and we didn't even buy a rug--which is incredible since the pressure was intense...

Tip--I did buy towels, which are simply wonderful! Name of the store is Dervis at Keseciler Caddesi No.33. Buy Mehmet Effendi Coffee--near the spice bazaar )Tahmis Caddesi 66
and try the pistachio nuts, kebap,and the best baklava you ever tasted (I dont even like Baklava--but they make it with simple syrup instead of honey--yum)

Thank JJ416
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 16, 2011

And now, for something completely different... the Grand Bazaar! Is the perfect place to walk, see, feel, and buy in an incomparably unique atmosphere (who needs malls?). The colors, shapes, the giant, truly multicultural, crowd, the streets and alleys, the gold, the furs, the textiles, the scents, the gifts, haggling with vendors... what a experience. Even for those who do not want to buy is worth a look. But if you want to buy, first see the different offers for the same product, and, when you decide, prepare to haggling. In my case, I often start by offering half of the asked price, until we reach an agreement, or not. The vendors are educated, so respect them (unlike the aggressive image that is often passed), they're just trying to earn their salary. Prepare to mix English, with Spanish, with French or even Turkish in a cheerful "linguistic cacophony." It is, at worst, a fun place where we spent a few hours easily without realizing it. Note: Closed On Sundays, in other days are open until 19 hour.

2  Thank Maccsousa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2011

Gran Bazaar... little experience...

...and that’s it... so much to see, so much to buy, only one day to visit and... it was closed! That’s what happens when you try to visit it on a Sunday... we only had this day to visit the city and, although we had information that the Gran bazaar could be closed, we just wanted to give it a shot, but without any luck! Only a few “stores” on the outside were open and, although we could make a little shopping, it was not possible to feel the atmosphere and the visual impact that must be this HHUUGGEE marketplace!

1  Thank MartaFerrer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Kapali Carsi also viewed


Been to Kapali Carsi? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing