TURKEY – Istanbul, Grand Bazaar rooftop // Skyfall (2012)
A covered market like Kapalı Çarşı in Istanbul is usually known for it’s vibrant shops under the roof. Well, as Bond likes to go other ways, he offers a whole new perspective while driving a motorcycle on the roof. Don’t forget your brightest smile and some Bakshish.
Why Bond was here
007 (Daniel Craig) chases henchmen Patrice (Ola Rapace) trough Istanbul. The villain had stolen a flash drive with the names of all MI6 and NATO agents being undercover in terrorist organizations – sure, Bond needs it back. The chase starts with cars and the help of Eve Moneypenny (Naomi Harris) in Eminönü. Then the boys change for motorcycles and hunt each other on top of and inside the Grand Bazaar of Istanbul.
Bond enters the market at Merim jewelry shop with a jump trough a window. The place is next to picturesque Zincirli Han – featured in From Russia With Love – in the northeast of the Bazaar. But more tricky is, where to watch, what happened before…
Bond and Patrice drive along a three-foot-wide concrete lane all the way from one end of the Bazaar roof to the other – in the background, the minarets of Nuruosmaniye Mosque scrap the sky. The piles on the roof are some Hundred years old and Istanbul authorities therefore do there best to not let people randomly climb the Bazaar.
If your just up for a glimpse, ask the merchants of huge carpet store next to Beyazıt Kapısı gate, the eastern entry to the Bazaar. Their multistory shop is just outside the real Bazaar and reaches above the covered market. From the highest level – usually not open for guests, so ask politely – offers a nice view trough the window.
However, for the real thing, you need to find the bureau of the Bazaar administration. It’s inside a little patio at a really narrow lane called Kürkçüler Çarşısı. The alley runs along the southern border of the Bazaar, the inner yard with the office is midway through. You can also ask security personnel or shop owners for the way. When entering the yard from Kürkçüler Çarşısı, the office is on the right side at the first level. From there, it it possible to enter the roof – but naturally, people are working there and you need there permission.
Good to know
The decision if you can play a little Bond, is done by the head of administration. We heard, he is a decent guy and allows people, to have a look. Sure, there is no running wild – or driving motorcycles – on the roof, but time for a photo there is. Unfortunately, if the boss is out in the market somewhere, the office is either closed or guarded. Then, it’s in your hands, how much of a spy you would like to be.
As you can see on the picture, it’s a bit rough – as was our entry to the roof. The director was off and his secretary dutifully guarded the office. We tried to charm her for some minutes, but must have made the impression of being brutes. Well, since she thought of us as being invaders, we then decided on doing so: We rushed for the door that leads to the roof, admired the view and returned before she could call the cops.
© 2012 Danjaq, LLC, United Artists Corporation and Columbia Pictures Industries. Inc. (1,2), © 2015 Huntingbond (3)