The Spice Bazaar

Share
Spice Bazaar has a total of 85 shops selling spices, Turkish delight and other sweets, jewellery, souvenirs, and dried fruits and nuts.
Spice Bazaar has a total of 85 shops selling spices, Turkish delight and other sweets, jewellery, souvenirs, and dried fruits and nuts.

4/4/2015

The local name of the bazaar, built in 1664.
The local name of the bazaar, built in 1664.

The world knows this ancient market place at The Spice Bazaar, located behind Yeni Camii (Yen ee Jam ee, New Mosque) near the Galata Bridge. But to those who live in Istanbul, this is Mısır Çarşısı (Musur Char shuh suh) , meaning Egyptian Bazaar. Located in the Eminönü quarter of the Fatih district, it is the second most famous covered shopping complex, after the Grand Bazaar.

According to Wikipedia: The building was endowed to the foundation of the New Mosque, and got its name “Egyptian Bazaar” (Turkish: Mısır Çarşısı) because it was built with the revenues from the Ottoman eyalet of Egypt in 1660. The word mısır has a double meaning in Turkish: “Egypt” and “maize”. This is why sometimes the name is wrongly translated as “Corn Bazaar”. The bazaar was (and still is) the center for spice trade in Istanbul, but in the last years more and more shops of other type are replacing the spice shops.

Unfortunately, it’s mostly a tourist trap these days—mandatory to see, of course, but prices are high and it’s not where the locals shop.

The building itself is part of the complex of the New Mosque. The revenues from the rented shops inside the bazaar building are used for the up keep of the mosque. This seems to be a common scheme and perhaps Christian churches should do the same.
The building itself is part of the complex of the New Mosque. The revenues from the rented shops inside the bazaar building are used for the up keep of the mosque. This seems to be a common scheme and perhaps Christian churches should do the same.
You can almost hear the sea from this seller's stand. If the New Mosque (Yeni Camii) wasn't in the way, you could see it. In a word: fresh.
You can almost hear the sea from this seller’s stand. If the New Mosque (Yeni Camii) wasn’t in the way, you could see it. In a word: fresh.
This is Bazad panir--white cheese. No Turk worth his salt would start the day without this and a handful of olives.
This is Beyaz Panir–white cheese. No Turk worth his salt would start the day without this and a handful of olives with his çay (chai, tea).

 

You may enjoy this article on buying spices here at the bazaar. http://fxcuisine.com/default.asp?language=2&Display=77&resolution=high
You may enjoy this article on buying spices here at the bazaar.
Just outside the entrance is a new square, complete with benches and modern fountains. This was completed about a year ago. On this perfect early spring day, it was a busy place.
Just outside the entrance is a new square, with benches and modern fountains. This was completed about a year ago. On this perfect early spring day, it was a busy place.

Flower market and park, 2015-04-03, 6

Just outside the Spice Market was a flower market--which also had pets.
Just outside the Spice Market was a flower market–which also had pets…….
...and leeches. Ewwwww.
…and leeches. Ewwwww.
Pet supplies and flower seeds.
Pet supplies and flower seeds.
I am happy to report that I can actually read this sign, and not just the English translation at the bottom.
I am happy to report that I can actually read this sign, and not just the English translation at the bottom. Progress!
Share

Published by

Beth

I'm a professional vagabond. I quit my cubical job in January 2014. Since then, I've hiked the Appalachian Trail, The Camino, and taught English in Vietnam, Turkey, Russia, Spain and Mexico. I'm exploring the world.

2 thoughts on “The Spice Bazaar”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *