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  • Spice Bazaar
  • Ayder
  • Grand Bazaar
  • Turkish Cuisine

Turkey has a lot of shopping in terms of spices, clothes, jewellery etc. One can never stop shopping in the bazaars of Turkey.

Spice Bazaar

A short walk from the Grand Bazaar, is the 17th-century Eminönü Egyptian Spice Bazaar, open seven days a week. It is another favourite of the camera-wielding, souvenir-seeking tourist. A bustling gastronomic paradise since 1664, this is the best place to pick up dried fruits and nuts, spices, olives, Turkish delight, oils and essences of the finest order. Bronze curios glint in the sun, torpedo-sized dates are stacked to the rafters, and the decadent scent of freshly ground Mehmet Efendi coffee merges with the aroma of fresh fish.

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Ayder comes as a surprise—a Turkish alpine village! Surprising but true: Turkey’s eastern Black Sea coast resembles noplace so much as mountainous Central Europe with its thick stands of evergreen trees, cascading streams of water, high mountain pastures and hearty, ruddy-complexioned high-altitude folk. More surprises: the citizens of Ayder, perched on the slopes of the Kaçkar Mountains, are famed throughout Turkey as pastry chefs. Many move to the cities to ply their trade in fancy hotels or their own little pastane(pastry shops), returning to Ayder to vacation or retire. A dip in the thermal baths of hot springs bursting from the earth, is worth an experience.

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Grand Bazaar

Constructed in 1461, the Grand Bazaar (Kapali Çarşi), boasting 5,000 shops, is one of the largest covered markets in the world. Once a vibrant hub of international and local trade, recent decades have seen this labyrinth of glittering delights win the hearts, minds and wallets of wide-eyed tourists in search of the ultimate oriental shopping experience. With beckoning sellers peddling exquisite textiles, pottery, spices, jewellery, lanterns and souvenirs, bartering is an absolute must. To get away from the rush 22 ancient gateways offer ample escape routes.

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Turkish cuisine is largely the heritage of Ottoman cuisine, which can be described as a fusion and refinement of Central Asian, Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisines. The Ottomans fused various culinary traditions of their realm with influences from Middle Eastern cuisines, along with traditional Turkic elements from Central Asia (such as yogurt), creating a vast array of specialities—many with strong regional associations. Similar to India, Turkish cuisine varies across the country. The cooking of Istanbul, Bursa, Izmir, and the rest of the Aegean region inherits many elements of Ottoman court cuisine, with a lighter use of spices, a preference for rice over bulgur, and a wider use of seafood. The cuisine of the Black Sea Region uses fish extensively and includes maize dishes. The cuisine of the southeast—Urfa, Gaziantep and Adana—is famous for its kebabs,mezes and dough-based desserts such as baklava, kadayıf and künefe (kanafeh). Especially in the western parts of Turkey, where olive trees grow abundantly, olive oil is the major type of oil used for cooking. The cuisines of the Aegean, Marmara and Mediterranean regions are rich in vegetables, herbs, and fish. Central Anatolia has many famous specialties, such as keşkek (kashkak), mantı (especially from Kayseri) and gözleme.

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