Considered as one of the biggest historical market places in the world, Tehran’s Grand Bazaar in the city center fulfill various functions rather than just trade which has witnessed so many crucial events throughout Iranian history such as Tobacco Protest against Britain and the 1979 Iranian Revolution.
As most of the architecture of the bazaar is associated with the 19th century onwards, the roots of the area go back even further which is hard to say exactly when since many travelers mentioned the growth of trade in the present area of the bazaar by the advent of Islam.
Although the main expansion including many buildings, walls and passages dates back to 400 years ago under the Safavid Dynasty, there are many places with a more recent memory of the last 200 years making the current bazaar one of the newest in the Middle East. Western travelogues indicate that around 1660 BC and beyond, the bazaar area was largely open and only partially covered.
Having been divided into different passages and corridors with over 10 km in length and several entrances, the bazaar contains specialized stores for a number of commodities such as carpet, copper, paper, spices and precious metals as well as wide range of small businesses.
Extending from the south of Arg up to Molavi Avenue, the Bazaar of Tehran includes components such as timchehs, houses, rows, corridors, docks, and caravanserais together with mosques, schools, and bathhouses decorated with beautiful dome-like brick ceilings and amazing ceramic artworks and colorful plaster moulding on facades.
Udlajan, Abbas-Abad, Cheheltan, Jame Mosque, Pachenar along with other timchehs for cloth sellers, shoemakers, goldsmiths, ironsmiths, and copper smiths are among the most important existing sections of the bazaar. Mahdieh and Hajeb ol-Doleh Timchehs are the oldest and most beautiful parts worthy of visiting.
As a perfect destination for foreign tourists who seek to explore the glorious atmosphere of a traditional Iranian mall in the midst of wholesale merchants, retailers, and street hawkers and to enjoy a good bargain through antiques and modern materials, Tehran’s Grand Bazaar is a fantastic reminder of a splendid past in the megacity of Tehran.