Are you a type of person who enjoys shopping in general? If yes, then you are in a heaven while traveling in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and all neighboring countries.
One of the most fascinating parts of your trip can be your visits to old bazars in every city you go. Since all these countries are multicultural and multilingual, you will find a large variety of souvenirs in each of them.
It is also possible to go to gift shops, but most probably it won’t be as pleasant as entering an old bazar, seeing many shades of colors all in one place and fantasizing traders of old time in traditional clothes from various cities or even countries.
If you decide to go to bazar instead of gift shops, keep in mind that in bazar you do not usually find fix prices written on labels. This means that you need to learn how to ask price, which you can easily do it using the relevant phrases you find in this section and shopping phrases.
Then, you need to know how to bargain and ask for discount. You can find some phrases bellow and memorize them, but you should know how and when to use them. This ability is not something we can teach, since you will have to learn it in practice. Moreover, bazar, unlike a gift shop, is usually crowded, so you need to be more careful not to get lost or be robbed.
Before going to Bazar
Finally, it is better to decide on the types of souvenirs you tend to buy before going to bazar. Most of the foreigners have heard about carpets, nuts, textile and saffron as souvenirs from Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan but there are plenty of beautiful handmade stuffs, delicious sweets and colorful spices that you can find in these countries. When you enter bazar, there will be many salons, which may look like a labyrinth. Each salon, râste(h) in Farsi, is allocated to one type of products. If you know what you are looking for beforehand, it is easier to find the relevant salon. If not, do not worry. Just drench yourself in colors, smells and sounds of bazar and enjoy playing by ear. You will find beautiful reminders of your trip and your way out for sure.