Tehran Grand Bazaar
The Grand Bazaar (Persian: Bāzār e Bozorg) is an old historical bazaar in Tehran. It is split into several corridors over 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) in length, each specializing in different types of goods, and has several entrances, with Sabze-Meydan being the main entrance.
In addition to shops, the Grand Bazaar contains mosques, guest houses, and banks.
Persian city context has been extended around the Bazaar, an economic, social and, cultural center in the Persian community. The universal fame of the Eastern Bazaar is partly due to the fact that it has multifarious functions rather than being simply a trade center. Social institutes, from mosques, churches, banks, and mausoleums to guest houses, bath-houses and schools took shape around the bazaar. This concept of Market has been developed from the Safavid era onward. Stepping in Tehran Bazaar, you are faced with a rich history of Eastern Market at its best. Having an important place, especially in Islamic cities, the Bazaar started from the main gate of the city, showcasing the importance of political and commercial power, and so did the Grand Bazaar of Tehran.
The aristocrats and the nobles started building new Timchehs (arcades) and Saras in this Bazaar to boost their socioeconomic status. As a venue for demonstrations and protests, this Bazaar has played an important role in the constitutional era. During the reign of Naser-e-din Shah Qajar, the Grand Bazaar had its golden time. Changes occurred during this period such as the addition of decorative brickworks and the roofed lanes which were pleasant escapes from the summer heat. As mentioned by travelers, the bazaar used to be only partially roofed before this time.
The labyrinthine alleys around Bazaar make it accessible from several lanes, turning it into an interesting touristic zone in the capital of Iran. Let’s scroll through the twisted roofed lanes, being the shelter for people once due to this nesting structure. Amidst the hustle and bustle of the bazaar, you come to some memorabilia remaining from the Safavid, Zandieh, Qajarid, and Pahlavi era. This is a warren of culture and history. Once the center of political, economic, and social activities, the Grand Bazaar has lost its boom during the modern age. But it still offers a feast of colors, odors, and sounds that never cease to impress. Nowhere else can you experience such a vibe. Continue traveling through this frequented Bazaar, and head for shopping in the Saras brimming with herbs, fresh fruits, nuts, dates, home appliances, clothes, etc. Try talking to the amiable shopkeepers and get a good bargain. Enjoy your time in the restaurants and teahouses dating back to 100 years ago.