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Istanbul

Hi any one know hours of Grand Bazaar? (Istanbul) I'm getting different info online - is it open on Sundays? Thanks leaving in 2 wks ..... Also any nice island near by for some R&R ? Thanks for any info. Jan

Posted by
1828 posts

Its not open on Sunday. It will be open by the time you get there in the morning but I don't know how late it stays open.

Posted by
10 posts

Sorry meant to fix that yesterday, new phone - typing learning curve needed - yes that's near not never - thanks

Posted by
62 posts

As mentioend it is closed on Sundays (although some of the surrounding shops are open) along with whatever holidays there might be in Turkey. Hours are 9 Am to 7 PM so you have plenty of time to roam around. If you have not been there before then here are a couple of tips: Forget any notions of using a map and ignore your sense of direction as both are useless once you enter. If a vender uses any of these terms you are going to be gouged: "I have a very special price for you". "You are my first customer today" (if you enter early). "You'll be my final customer today" (if you enter late). "This is a very special (scarf, wallet, purse, rug, ect)." Expect an endless stream of "Hello" as you walk past the shops. Americans in particular simply cannot resist "Hello" (think about how we over and over say hello to babies who are learning to talk) and once you respond you have been "made". Since most shops post no prices and with Americans all thought to be rich and having no sense of market value you can expect the American price to be above the normal tourist price, which is always well above the actual price. Good luck.

Posted by
10 posts

Thanks everyone - anymore advice will be appreciated leaving in two weeks

Posted by
819 posts

Hi from Wisconsin, Yes there are islands nearby. The Prices' Islands off the coast of the Asian side of Istanbul. There are regular ferry services out to the islands. I did not make it out there and have them on my list for my next time in Istanbul. As I recall there are no cars on the islands so R&R is of the order. The Grand Bazaar...be ready to meet the carpet salesmen. They can be fun or annoying, depending on how you decide to handle their entreaties. "You look like a man who needs a carpet". Now that is pretty good and worth a laugh and a s short conversation. My favorite is when my wife was told "You walk like woman who wants a carpet." And "where are you from?" no matter what you answer...they have a cousin who lives there.
Get outside the bazaar, down hill and toward the Golden Horn. We found that much more interesting and non-touristy. Try finding your way from the Grand Bazaar to the Spice Market through the back streets. Perfectly safe and exciting. wayne iNWI

Posted by
6697 posts

Visit the Arasta Bazaar by the Blue Mosque (you can google it and see all the shops) - much more mellow and hardly any pressured sales at this one. And nicer stuff too. It was wonderful. Also you have to check out the Spice Market - it was more fun (for me) than the Grand Bazaar.