Answers from Our Experts (1)
Just like the city itself, the shopping scene in Istanbul is balanced between old institutions and modern upstarts.
For the old and traditional, wander through the maze of stalls at the Grand Bazaar. You’ll find just about everything here, but the items most worth seeking out are those inspired by the city’s Ottoman roots: intricate rugs, colorful jewelry and ceramics, and luxurious bath products. For a more retro vibe, stroll the small stone streets of Çukurcuma in Beyoğlu, where antique and nostalgia shops are found at every other storefront.
Our Forbes Travel Guide editors say there are two areas to consider for more modern shopping excursions. In Galata, particularly along Serdar-ı ekrem Street, you’ll find hip, up-and-coming Turkish designers; the store Building, for example, showcases a range of new Turkish trends. Along the same street as Building you’ll find a number of other great design and fashion shops, including Arzu Kaprol. Finally, if you want to see the real high-end fashions, head to Nişantaşı’s shopping streets, home to international brands like Zara and Prada.
Regardless of where you go, don’t plan your shopping spree for a Sunday since most places will be closed.