The Divan Yolu was the "Road to the Imperial Council" during Ottoman times. In the Byzantine period it was the Mese Street, the main boulevard leading from the city center on Seraglio Point to the Porta Auera ‘The Golden Gate’ where it met the Via Ignatia; the road to Rome. We start by a tall marble shaft called the Million, which still stands, at the beginning of Divan Yolu. We continue our walk and see some of Ottoman sultans’ Mausoleums, Mosques, medreses schools, Roman forums, Byzantine monuments such as Çemberlitas (the Burnt Column) and the remains of the Theodosian Arc d’Triumph.
Probably the best way to describe the Grand Bazaar is to quote Mark Twain - “We went to the Grand Bazaar in Stamboul, of course, and I shall not describe it further than to say it is a monstrous hive of little shops – thousands. I should say - all under one roof, and cut up into innumerable little blocks by narrow streets which are arched overhead.” With more than 4000 shops in 64 streets and with 22 gates, the-Grand Bazaar - or Kapalıçarsı as it is in Turkish - , looks like a labyrinth. We must say that this definitely is not a shopping tour - but a walk that will lead you through shops where they sell leather goods, sweets, dried fruit and spices, jewelry, glassware, pottery, fabrics, belly dancing costumes, t-shirts and all sorts of souvenirs. We will visit workshops where you will see how gold is melt in fire, as it has been for centuries; you will witness how the craftsmen fix degrees on carats; you will see how artisans do their engraving on silver.
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