Shopping in Mashdad
Mashhad has three large bazaars. Interesting things to buy include Khorassan crafts, fur-cloak, jewelry, perfume, saffron, and religious souvenirs.
- Bazaar-e Reza (Bazaar-e Bozorg). Two stories height and one of the main shopping centres in the town. Sells souvenirs, sweets, saffron and clothes on the first floor and jewellery on the second floor. Famous for the turquoise which is mined near Mashhad. All products are aimed at the Iranian taste.
- Sara-ye Bazaar-e Reza Mostly a fabric and textile bazaar.
- Kuwaiti Bazaar, on the 17th Shahrivar Square.
- Bazaar-e bozorg-e markazy, on the corner of shirazi Av. and akhond-e khorasani st.(Shohada crossroad).
- Shargh-Zist Trade Center All things with best prices, Tabarsi Sqr, north side of Holy Shrine.
- Proma Trade Center, Janbaz Sqr.
- Almas-e Shargh, Northern Khayyam Blvd.
- Zist Khavar, Shariaty Sqr.
- Sajjad Blvd (500 metres northeast of Khayyam metro station). You can find few good quality shopping centers in this Blvd (a bit expensive).
A few money changers line up on Imam Khomeini Blvd., this is where rates are competitive. Hotels change at much worse rates, if at all.
If Mashhad is your first station in Iran, you may consider getting an Iranian ATM to prevent having your money stolen. The state-owned Bank-e Melli-ye Iran provides such a service for tourists who visit Iran. Tourists just need to head the nearest branch of this bank. Information on this service can be found here. The drawback is that the card expires the date your visa expires (mind this point if you extend your visa) and that you hand your Euros or Dollars to the bank who converts it to Rial at the government rate. This is by far lower than what you receive from money changers. So your safety comes at a price.
Another way to prevent having your money stolen, is going to the nearest bank and getting a gift card. They are exactly like ordinary ATM debit cards, but once they get empty, they cannot be recharged. Sepah Bank or Bank -e- Sepah is a governmental bank that has a current account service for foreigners which provides both ATM debit card and cheque writing option. A list of permitted Iranian banks can be found here
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