Because there are so many historical palaces and mansions, the architecture, and intricacies of each one demand special attention; touring all of them in one or two days is never enough. As a result, we’ve highlighted the qualities and relevance of each structure to help you decide where to begin.
Here are the beautiful historical palaces and historical mansions of Istanbul, which were built in different periods and influenced by various architectural movements for you if you wish to travel to Istanbul.
The Çırağan Palace
This historical palace, named after the torch festivals known as “Çırağan Festivals,” was called Kazancıoğlu Gardens in the 17th century. The palace, which houses the most beautiful examples of stonemasonry, hosted important meetings in its time. Today, many social activities and events are held at the Çırağan Palace, which has been converted into a hotel with added buildings.
Dolmabahçe Palace, located in the most special and beautiful location of Istanbul, was used for the administration of the empire during the Ottoman Empire, and today it takes on the task of a museum.
Before the construction of the historical palace, the Ottoman Navy was anchored in the place where it was located. However, when the place became a swamp in time, it was transformed into a private garden where the sultans could rest. The construction of Dolmabahçe Palace was started during the reign of Sultan Abdülmecit I, and its construction was completed in 1855.
Dolmabahçe Palace, which is considered among the National Palaces today, sheds light on history with its architecture, craftsmanship, and collection, which are great for discovering Istanbul. The bed and room where Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the last visitor of the historical palace, passed away is also open to visitors.
Topkapı Palace, which has one of the most beautiful views on the European side, was built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet between 1460-1478. From the 15th century to the 19th century, Dolmabahçe Palace was used as the administrative center of the Ottoman Empire until it was completed. Located on an area of 80,000 square meters, the historical palace also carries the title of being the first museum in the history of the Republic.
Topkapı Palace consists of six sections: Bab-ı Hümayun, Sofa-i Humayun, Alay Square, Enderun Courtyard, Divan Square, and Harem. There are many artifacts of great historical importance, from Muhammad’s beard to the Chinese collection, from the Spoonmaker’s Apple to the Hagia Irene Church in its courtyard.
The area where the historical palace used to be used as a hunting ground was built by Mihrişah Sultan, the mother of Selim III, and its construction was completed in 1807. During the reign of Albulhamit, the administrative center was moved from Dolmabahçe Palace to Yıldız Palace in case of a sea siege. Yıldız Palace gained importance years after its construction. The building, which served as the Military Academies building for a while, was opened to the public after 1994.
Yıldız Palace, with its forest air and unique Bosphorus view, is considered to be one of the rare places where both natural and historical beauties melt in one pot.
Beylerbeyi Palace, which was started to be built by Sultan Abdulaziz in 1861, was used as a summer palace by the sultans in the last periods of the Ottoman Empire and also played a role in hosting foreign state officials.
Beylerbeyi Palace is one of the places to travel in Istanbul with its marble workmanship, the furniture inside, the Bosphorus view, and the ability to stay cool even in hot weather due to being a summer palace. You can not only visit this beautiful building but also have your breakfast in it. Although the price of the breakfast served in Beylerbeyi Palace, which overlooks the Bosphorus, is quite affordable compared to the grandeur of the building, it can be quite difficult to find a place due to the busyness.
Adile Sultan Palace
Adile Sultan Palace was built by Salkis Balyan in 1858 as a gift to Adile Sultan, the sister of Sultan Abdülmecit. With the death of Sultan Abdülmecit, his brother Sultan Abdülaziz took the throne and set out to give Abdülmecit’s testamentary gift. Adile Sultan Palace is one of the most important places to travel on the Anatolian side.
The hall of the historical palace, where graduations, seminars, weddings, and various events take place, has a capacity of 500 people. At the same time, there is a garden for 1000 people in the palace.
It is claimed that Ihlamur Mansion is a Ceremony Mansion because of the Merasim Mansion and the Maiyet Mansion built by Abdülmecit. Maiyat Mansion, which is made of cut stone and has two rectangular plans, is simpler in terms of architecture compared to the Merasim Mansion. It is said to have been used by sultans and harem women.
Ihlamur Mansion, which consists of three separate sections, namely the Ihlamur District with Pool, the Garden of Love, and the Hacı Hüseyin Vineyard, was built by Sultan III. It was transformed into a private garden during the reign of Ahmet.
Located in Yıldız Park and built as a cedar mansion in 1871, Malta Mansion is also known as Tent Mansion. The historic mansion, which was the place where Murat V was hiding during his efforts to ascend to the throne, was not used for 40 years after Abdülhamit’s exile. In 1941, it was transferred to the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality.
Frequently Asked Question
What are the opening hours?
It changes depending on the palace or the mansion. We advise you to check beforehand as there might be unusual days, holidays etc. which they might be closed. Most of them are open by 10 am until at least 5 pm.
What should I know before going?
Essential information is given in each of these destinations. Some even have guided tours. Don’t forget that all of these palaces carry a huge history.
How many palaces are there in Istanbul?
You will find 10 very important palaces and some more pavilions in Istanbul.
What is the palace called in Istanbul?
The most famous palace in Istanbul is the Topkapi Palace. You will be stunned by its beauty when you visit Topkapi in Istanbul.
What are Ottoman palaces called?
Ottoman palaces were called “saray” in Turkish.