Our hotel arranged a taxi to take us to the Spice Market and we were let out right across the street. We saw an ATM nearby and went to get some TL and were almost ripped off by someone who messed up the screen and when it wouldn't accept my card rushed over to 'help'. He palmed my debit card and wanted me to enter my PIN which I refused to do. My husband had to step in and tell him to return my card and leave which he finally did. It was our only bad experience in Turkey. Most people are friendly and helpful to Americans.
We went on a Saturday morning and the market was very crowded with locals. I had wanted to buy some apple tea and Turkish Delight to take home but wasn't sure that the prices were the best. It ended up that we got better prices at a small grocery near our hotel. Afterward we walked to the Grand Bazaar and saw the University of Istanbul while we were looking for the Mosque of Suleyman the Magnificent (which we ended up missing and didn't want to retrace our steps). If you're going to visit both start at the Grand Bazaar so you will be walking DOWNHILL to get to the Spice Market. It was quite a rigorous trek walking uphill.
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