Kemeraltı Market

Kemeraltı Market information

Location
İzmir , Turkey
Getting there
Metro: Çankaya, Konak
Opening hours
8am-7pm Mon-Sat
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A labyrinthine bazaar stretching from Konak Sq through to the ancient Agora, Kemeraltı dates back to the 17th century and is home to shops, eateries, artisans' workshops, mosques, coffee houses, tea gardens and synagogues. Those who spend a day exploring its crowded and colourful streets, historic places of worship, hidden courtyards and grand caravanseries will see the real İzmir – this is a local institution that is accurately described as the city's true heart and soul.

The bazaar's main drag is Anafartalar Caddesi – use this and the historic Hisar , Şadırvan and Kestanepazarı Mosques as navigational aids. You're bound to get lost – even locals do – but losing your way and coming across unexpected treasures is part of the bazaar's attraction. Look out for the Kızlarağası Hanı , built in 1744, an Ottoman bedesten (warehouse) and kervansaray (caravanserai) similar to the İç (Inner) Bedesten in İstanbul's famous Grand Bazaar. Other highlights include the cafes in Kahveciler Sokak between the Hisar Mosque and the Kızlarağası Han, which serve the city's famous fincanda pişen Türk kahvesi (Turkish coffee boiled in the cup); and the produce market in Havra (Synagogue) Sokak within the city's historic Jewish enclave. To spend a food-focused day within and around the bazaar, consider signing up for the Only in İzmir guided culinary walk operated by the well-regarded Culinary Backstreets outfit.

Note that it is not safe to wander through Kemeraltı at night, particularly in the area around Havra Sokağı.