Bazaar of Tabriz, Iran – photo essay and tourist information
Bazaar of Tabriz
Situated in the heart of the ancient city of Tabriz, the UNESCO listed Bazaar is one of the oldest and definitely one of the most atmospheric markets in the Middle East. Furthermore, it is the largest covered Bazaar on Earth and was one of the main commercial centres on the Silk Road.
The complex itself consists of a series of interconnected buildings and enclosed spaces covering an area of over 7km2 with different sections dedicated to specific goods. The most famous are arguably Amir Bazaar (gold and jewellery) and Mozzafarieh (carpets) but here there is something for everybody including a shoe bazaar amongst others.
By the 13th century Tabriz was already an important and well established town but its Golden Age came in the 16th century when it was made the capital of the Safavid kingdom. Much of the present day structure dates back to this period and despite Tabriz’s fading status thereafter, the Bazaar helped ensure that Eastern Azerbaijan‘s primer town remained an important commercial centre all the way to the present day.
Aside from being a place to buy things, the Bazaar is also the centre of socio-cultural life in the city. This is the place people meet and discuss, celebrate religious festivals and protest. Every year on the Day of Ashura, merchants cease trading for 10 days and religious ceremonies are held inside the bazaar. It is a warren of tea houses and shisha pipe smoking dens, and the place where men relax, socialise and exchange stories. Also, within the bazaar suburb is the Jameh Mosque, the largest and most important religious building in Tabriz.
Visiting Bazaar of Tabriz
Opening times: Sat – Thu: 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.
A walk through the Bazaar of Tabriz
written by: Jon