10 Turkish Souvenirs You Can Get from Local Crafts Shops in Türkiye
Going to Türkiye is an aesthetic journey on its own. No matter which city you choose to visit and how you spend your time, you will gather wonderful memories. However, you should not forget to crown your vacation with tokens to show for it! Small and light gifts will serve as souvenirs that will remind you of the memories you have gathered in the places you visited. Lucky for you, the most memorable souvenirs to purchase in Türkiye come in a wide range and diversity, from the functional to the ornamental. Before you start shopping, time to explore the top 10 Turkish souvenirs you can purchase from local crafts shops in Türkiye!
1- Gaziantep – Mother of Pearl Inlaid Crafts
Mother-of-pearl craftsmanship comprises carving and inlay methods, ultimately giving birth to an aesthetic and eye-catching image. Mother-of-pearl is usually preferred for mirror decorations, combs, and backgammon sets, which have a special place in Turkish culture, as well as jewellery and decorative products that are widely loved and purchased. Today, this craft is practised by skilled hands in Gaziantep province. With the attractive beauty of mother-of-pearl, products with mother-of-pearl inlay will be one of the most memorable souvenirs you can gift to your loved ones from Türkiye!
In Gaziantep, you can also buy various products from authentic Turkish Baklava to sundried spices and savoury delicacies. Follow the link!
2- Kütahya – Ceramicware
Kütahya province is the best place to buy ceramic souvenirs with delicate artistry and tile art. Ceramic gifts and products have been handcrafted in Kütahya for over 3000 years. The hotspot of visitors willing to purchase tile and ceramic souvenirs is, of course, the Çiniciler Çarşısı (Ceramist Bazaar).
If you look deeper into ceramics, you might see the imprints of history. You can purchase plates, glass, and vases in traditional and modern styles to glamourize the styling of your house.
3- Kayseri (Soğanlı) – Rag Doll
Skilfully made by village women in Soğanlı village of Kayseri, rag dolls are known across the country as Soğanlı bebekleri aka Soğanlı babies. They are among the region’s most popular and authentic souvenirs. The fabric is carefully fastened around the wooden sticks and beautifully embellished with colourful beads and sequins. Decorated with hand-knitted Anatolian motifs, these dolls will be great gifts for your loved ones, family, and especially children!
4- Bursa – Silk Weaving
Regarding souvenirs, handmade silk weavings in Bursa are among the most exquisite and sought-after gift options you can get in Türkiye. Once you touch the fabric, its softness will make you feel like you’re touching the clouds. You can pick from various traditional and modern styles to your delight.
Silk products are readily available in many parts across Bursa. Koza Han or “Cocoon Han” is a famous hub of silk souvenirs with many gift shops waiting to be discovered. Having finished shopping, discover Bursa’s cittaslow town of İznik by clicking on this link!
5- Aydın (Karacasu) – Pottery
Passed down from father to son, pottery is a traditional handicraft in Aydın’s Karacasu district. Karacasu pottery is unique due to its dark red hue that comes from the red soil that is unique to the region. Moreover, it does not contain any harmful chemicals. Lovely trays, pans, glasses, vases, and teapots made with the traditional methods carrying the memories of the region are waiting for you to be gifted to your loved ones - or even to yourself!
6- Gaziantep – Copperware
The history of coppersmith in Gaziantep dates back to the ancient times. It’s a pretty tedious art in that it might sometimes take weeks or even months to craft a single piece, which is why it can be quite costly. From many kinds of knickknackery to cezve to make authentic Turkish coffee, you can find many eye-catching souvenirs that will make your neighbours curious!
7- Eskişehir – Meerschaum Products
Meerschaum shines out as an important symbol of Eskişehir. It has a history of 5000 years, yet it hasn’t lost anything from its fame. Since most of the world’s Meerschaum reserves are found in Eskişehir, it is Meerschaum heaven in that aspect. It is used to make souvenirs for many uses like tobacco pipes, charming jewellery, and lovely trinkets! They’ll be unforgettable gifts for your loved ones.
The central Anatolian city of Eskişehir offers many other opportunities. Here’s your guide to learn more about them!
8- Denizli – Yatağan Swords and Knives
Yatağan swords and knives were indispensable weapons of the Ottoman army and the Aegean Efe (swashbucklers). Yatağan sword is an item of excellent craftsmanship, which is quite agile, owing to its sharpness, lightness, and small length. It is unique due to its slightly curved shape.
Yatağan swords and knives are forged using an anvil and hammer and quenched with conventional steel by highly skilled artisans. They can be intriguing presents for your friends who are interested in history and collectibles!
9- İzmir – Hand-made Rugs (Bergama)
One of the most sophisticated handicrafts in the Bergama region is carpet and kilim weaving, which provides a beautiful opportunity to surprise your loved ones. Until they reach you, handmade rugs of Bergama go through a long process. Woollen threads are dyed with the roots extracted from numerous plants so that Bergama rugs and carpets keep their vibrant colour for many years! They are weaved by small-fingered women to make them thick and enduring.
The beautiful İzmir is also famous for many other authentic handicrafts. Check this link to explore the artisan towns of İzmir!
10- Çankırı – Salt Lamp
Salt lamps are a great souvenir option as they elevate the look of any room at home or office. Its raw material is crystal rock salt, and it’s known to be completely natural. Because of the negative ions it emits, it’s also known to offer countless remedies for illnesses. You can gift them to your loved ones on special occasions. They will aesthetically appeal to one’s spirit and uplift the mood instantly!