Istanbul, the enchanting city where East meets West, has a treasure trove of unique and affordable souvenirs that will delight your senses and evoke memories of your time in Turkey. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the best cheap souvenirs to buy in Istanbul, from delicious sweets and aromatic spices to intricate ceramics and traditional textiles.

Savor the Flavors of Turkey: Turkish Delight, Halva, and Baklava

Turkish Delight and Halva

One of the most iconic and beloved gifts from Istanbul is Turkish Delight, known as “lokum” in Turkish. This sweet confectionery, made from sugar, starch, and water, comes in a variety of flavors and textures. You can find it in fruit, nut, and even floral varieties. Halva, another sweet treat, is made from tahini, sugar, and nuts, and is equally delectable.

Where to buy: Hafiz Mustafa, Ali Muhiddin Hacı Bekir, and Koska are among the best places to purchase Turkish Delight and halva.

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Baklava, a scrumptious pastry made from layers of thin, flaky filo dough filled with nuts and soaked in honey, is another must-buy souvenir in Istanbul. This mouthwatering dessert is sure to impress friends and family back home.

Where to buy: Karaköy Güllüoğlu, Şekerci Cafer Erol, and İmren Lokumları are renowned for their baklava.

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Dive into the World of Turkish Cuisine: Guided Food Tours

Brew a Cup of Tradition: Turkish Tea Glasses & Tea

Turkish Tea Glasses

Bring the tradition of Turkish tea ceremonies to your home with a set of ornate Turkish tea glasses. These elegant, tulip-shaped glasses come in various styles and colors, often adorned with intricate patterns or gold detailing.

Where to buy: Head to the Grand Bazaar or Arasta Bazaar for a wide selection of tea glasses.

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Traditional Turkish Tea

Pair your Turkish tea glasses with some traditional sorts of Turkish tea. These unique flavors will transport you back to the bustling streets of Istanbul with every sip. Turkish tea, or “çay” in Turkish, is a black tea that is typically served in small, tulip-shaped glasses with a cube of sugar on the side. It is brewed using a double teapot method and is a staple beverage in Turkish households and tea houses.

Where to buy: Visit the Egyptian (Spice) Bazaar or any specialty tea shop in the city for a variety of tea blends and Turkish tea.

Wake Up with a Strong Brew: Turkish Coffee and Cevze

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee, an integral part of the country’s culture, is renowned for its strong flavor and unique preparation method. It is traditionally brewed in a cezve, a small, long-handled pot made of brass or copper. Consider purchasing some finely ground Turkish coffee to recreate this aromatic experience at home.

Where to buy: Mehmet Efendi, Nuri Toplar, and Selamlique are popular choices for buying Turkish coffee.


A cezve is an essential tool for brewing authentic Turkish coffee. These beautiful pots come in various materials and designs, making them both functional and decorative.

Where to buy: Check out the Grand Bazaar, Arasta Bazaar, or specialty coffee shops for a wide selection of cezves.

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Explore Istanbul Food Scene and Bazaars with Guided Tours

Ward Off the Evil Eye: Nazar Boncuk – Evil Eye Amulet

The evil eye amulet, or “nazar boncuk” in Turkish, is a popular souvenir in Istanbul. Believed to ward off negative energy, these vibrant blue glass amulets come in various shapes and sizes, perfect for adorning your home or as a thoughtful gift.

Where to buy: Find these amulets at the Grand Bazaar, Arasta Bazaar, or most souvenir shops throughout the city.

Pamper Your Skin: Olive Oil Soap

Olive oil soap, made from all-natural ingredients, is known for its moisturizing and nourishing properties. This gentle and eco-friendly soap is perfect for those with sensitive skin or looking for a sustainable alternative to conventional soaps.

Where to buy: Visit the Egyptian (Spice) Bazaar, Arasta Bazaar, or local soap shops for a variety of olive oil soaps.

Raise a Glass to Tradition: Raki

Raki, the national drink of Turkey, is a potent anise-flavored spirit often consumed with meze dishes during social gatherings. This distinctive beverage makes for an excellent gift or souvenir for those who appreciate unique spirits.

Where to buy: Liquor stores and some souvenir shops in Istanbul sell raki.

Spice Up Your Life: Spices and Herbs

Istanbul’s spice markets are a feast for the senses, offering a plethora of vibrant, aromatic spices and herbs. Bring home some fragrant saffron, sumac, or red pepper flakes to add a touch of Turkish flavor to your dishes.

Where to buy: The Egyptian (Spice) Bazaar or supermarkets are the ultimate destinations for spices and herbs in Istanbul.

Wrap Yourself in Tradition: Turkish Towel (Pashmina) and Turkish Scarf

Turkish Towel (Pashmina)

Turkish towels, also known as “peshtemals” or “pashminas,” are lightweight, absorbent, and quick-drying. Made from high-quality cotton or bamboo fibers, these versatile towels can be used as beach wraps, scarves, or even decorative throws.

Where to buy: The Grand Bazaar and Arasta Bazaar are excellent places to find Turkish towels in various colors and patterns.

More Turkish Textile in Istanbul >>

Turkish Scarf

A Turkish scarf, made from fine silk or cotton, is both a fashionable and practical accessory. Available in a variety of colors and intricate designs, these scarves make for an elegant gift or personal memento.

Where to buy: Explore the Grand Bazaar, Arasta Bazaar, or local textile shops for a wide selection of Turkish scarves.

Adorn Your Home with Ceramics: Bowls and Plates

Turkish ceramics, featuring intricate patterns and vibrant colors, are a beautiful addition to any home. Bowls and plates, in particular, showcase the skill and artistry of Turkish craftsmanship.

Where to buy: The Grand Bazaar, Arasta Bazaar, and specialized ceramic shops in Istanbul offer a vast array of stunning ceramic pieces.

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Refresh Your Senses: Lemon Cologne

Lemon cologne, a refreshing citrus-scented fragrance, is a popular souvenir in Turkey. Used as a hand sanitizer, aftershave, or light perfume, this versatile cologne is a delightful reminder of your time in Istanbul.

Where to buy: Find lemon cologne in most pharmacies, supermarkets, and souvenir shops throughout the city.


In conclusion, Istanbul offers an abundance of unique and affordable souvenirs that capture the essence of Turkish culture. From sweet treats and aromatic spices to intricate textiles and ceramics, these mementos will surely make your Istanbul experience unforgettable.

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