Qazvin Bazaar – Traditional Grand Bazaar Of Qazvin
Let’s explore the beating financial heart of Qazvin city. This traditional bazaar is the magnificent relic of Safavid (1501 to 1736) and Qajar (1789 to 1925) eras. Above all, Qazvin Bazaar displays a spectacular collection of Iranian architecture and its evolution, which is a treat for your eyes. This traditional monument commemorates history of Qazvin, a former capital of Iran around 5 centuries ago.
Why Visit Qazvin Bazaar?
- Qazvin Bazaar is one of the oldest Iranian Bazaars, originally dating from almost 500 years ago.
- It exhibits a stunning collection of Iranian architecture and its evolution.
- The bazaar is a comprehensive complex, comprising different structures such as mosques, bathhouses and various bazaar elements.
History of Qazvin Bazaar
As the story has it, the initial foundation of Bazaar dates back to almost one thousand years ago. However, it underwent various changes, developed during Safavid era and flourished at the time of Qajars. The golden period of Qazvin Bazaar began with the Qajars and lasted until the world wars. The traditional bazaar of Qazvin owed its fame to the strong international trade ties between Iran and Russia as well as Europe. Thus, Qazvin Bazaar had become the beating business heart of the region so that, in one of the oldest travel reports on Qazvin, Nasir Khusraw (a Persia traveler) had admired the city for its gardens and great bazaars.
Architecture of Qazvin Bazaar
Qazvin Bazaar is a large and fantastic complex with a captivating architecture. The builders of the bazaar have subtly arranged the bricks and the tiles and eventually created magical works of architecture. If you have already visited the Qeysarie Bazaar in Isfahan, you will notice that the two bazaars share some similarities, as they both feature Safavid architecture. In addition, you can visit some masterpieces that exhibit Qajar architecture. The bazar has experienced lots of changes over time. Some architectural structures were added and some were destroyed gradually.
What to Expect In the Bazaar
As you enter this traditional bazaar its absorbing architecture will fascinate you. In fact, the bazaar comprises a blend of fabulous monuments and architectural structures including Rastehs (a series of shops in a similar occupational group), Timchehs (a small caravanserai with some stores, where merchants could trade), Saras (a place in bazaar designed for wholesale). Among all structures of this complex, Sa’d Al-Saltaneh Caravanserai is a must visit that you can’t miss. Let’s explore these amazing architectural structures of Qazvin Bazar.
Sa’d Al-Saltaneh Caravanserai
Let’s begin our journey with an amazing architectural structure, called Sa’d Al-Saltaneh Caravanserai. Caravanserais were structures that were built in the past to function as inns. They were constructed either on the road sides or inside the towns. Sa’d Al-Saltaneh was one of the caravanserais lying in a town. It was not only a place for resting but also a trading center. Indeed, Sa’d Al-Saltaneh caravanserai is the largest surviving intracity caravanserai in Iran, dating back to the twentieth century. The bathhouse, mosque, teahouse, Timchehs, Saras, and Rastehs make this caravanserai a comprehensive complex, which had been offering numerous services.
In the traditional architecture of Iranian bazars, Qeysariehs were generally a part of the bazar in the form of cross-shaped or roofed Saras, where traders could purchase and sell precious goods. So, you can imagine how significant Qeysarieh Bazar must have been back then. It was also the meeting point of the craftsmen. Above all, the unique architecture of the bazar makes this section special. As you walk through the bazaar, high walls of bazaar embrace you and the wonderful brick vaults over your head will impress you.
You can approach the Timcheh through an arched entrance. As you enter the Sarbaz Timcheh, you will find yourself among old two-story structures, which surround a yard. In some sections, yellow and pink tiles depicting the hunting scenes, floral motifs, as well as birds, will catch your eyes.
Al-Nabi Mosque, also known as the Shah or Sultani Mosque, is the most outstanding mosque in Qazvin. Three entrances will take you to the mosque. In the middle of the yard, a large stone pond will refresh your soul. Four magnificent Iwans (an area walled on three sides and usually vaulted) with eight arcades on each side of the yard are distinctive elements of the mosque. Above all, magnificent architectural designs such as inscriptions and tiles embellish the mosque.
Attractions Near Qazvin Bazaar
Magnificent edifices and monuments near Qazvin Bazaar are also worth a visit. For instance, Chehel Sotoun palace with its stunning colored sash windows stands within walking distance of Qazvin bazaar. In Qajar Bathhouse & Anthropology Museum, you can observe figures that exhibit the culture of the region. Sardar Kuchak Cistern with its lovely tiles and Aminiha Hoseiniyeh embellished with eye-catching mirrorwork and paintings will fascinate you.
When to Visit The Bazaar
By and large, the best time to visit Qazvin Bazar is spring and summer.
Springs and summers from8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Falls and winters from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
During corona time: from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.