Story: While there is a significant amount of European influence in Sarajevo today, the driving influence for the first 450 years was from the Ottoman empire. This eastern influence led to a strong artisan community that excelled in working with precious and other metals, leather, and textiles. This carsija (actually, it is čaršija, pronounced charshiya) which means market. This area is the main market or Baščaršija (Bashcharshiya). It was the market center back in the day. Today, it still is a vibrant activity center of the city with locals and tourists shopping, eating, and spending time with friends here.
Vibe: The architecture of the area is from the old Ottoman area. It is alive with people and activity. Small independent shops have their shiny and colorful wares out on the street. The smoke and smell of grilled food waft through the area. It is a multi-sensory experience.
Recommendations: Your first visit to Baščaršija can be to take it all in. Then plan to go back often to spend time shopping, eating, and experiencing the movement of the city.
Notes: While there are some imports of good here now, there are still active artisans in the area.
Place: This is the old town. It is an area, but it the anchor point is Baščaršija St. or Ulica Baščaršija.