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Your guide to Dolmabahçe Museum in Istanbul

Dolmabahçe PalaceDolmabahce Museum

What is the Dolmabahce Museum? 

Elegant and ornately designed, the Dolmabahce Museum used to be the residence of the Crown Prince of the Ottoman Empire. Today, these rooms chronicle the history of Turkey from the 16th to the 20th century. The museum houses about 200 paintings displayed in 11 sections. This eclectic collection of paintings by Turkish and international artists gives fascinating insights into the Sultans who obtained them or painted them.

Quick facts about Dolmabahce Museum

Dolmabahce Museum

Official name: Dolmabahce Museum

Address: Vişnezade, Dolmabahçe Cd., 34357 Beşiktaş, İstanbul

Date of opening: 7 June 1856

Timings: 9 AM – 5 PM

Architect: Garabet Baliyan, Nigogayos Baliyan

Architectural style: Baroque, Rococo and Ottoman

Function: Museum

Number of visitors per year: 1.5 million visitors annually

Why visit Dolmabahce Museum?

Dolmabahce Museum

Highlights of Dolmabahce Museum

Dolmabahce Museum

Paintings

Dolmabahce Museum exhibits around 200 paintings from the 16th to the 20th century, which chronicle the history of Turkey and the Ottoman Empire in particular. These include a series of Oriental paintings. Some of the artists featured include court painters of the Ottoman Empire who captured a slice of history, like Ivan Aivazovsky and Sultan Abdulmecid II.

Dolmabahce Museum

Palace Gardens

The Dolmabahce Palace gardens are distinctly European in style and look. Laid out in geometric shapes with ponds, fountains, sculptures, and lanterns, the gardens have a variety of exotic flowers, plants, and shrubs from Asia, Europe, and as far as the Americas as well. Part of the gardens outside the Harem are more natural with trees and plants growing as nature intended. There is also a birdhouse that echoes with bird song.

Dolmabahce Museum

Beautiful views

The Dolmabahce Museum opens into part of the Palace Gardens, which are an oasis of tranquillity with beautiful flower beds and birdsong. There are also views of the Bosphorus Strait and the beautiful Istanbul skyline from the museum. You can visit the Sunhouse that is outside the museum. This part of the Dolmabahce Museum has a beautiful fence with 5 ornamental gates that were used to usher visitors from the Asian side of Istanbul.

History of Dolmabahce Museum

Built in 1856, the elegant rooms of the Crown Prince were located on the east of the Dolmabahce Palace Harem. Though it looks like an extension of the Harem from the outside, the museum is separated by a wall and opens into a part of the palace gardens. These rooms were the apartments of the heirs to the throne until they became the Sultan.

Architecture & design of Dolmabahce Museum

Dolmabahce Museum

Like the rest of the palace, the Dolmabahce Museum is an eclectic mix of European and Ottoman architectural styles. Intricate gold decorations embellish the walls and ceilings of these rooms. Decorations include crystal chandeliers, cut glass decorations, bronze candelabras, and beautiful Hereke rugs that adorn the Marmara marble floors. This space was renovated into a museum from 2010 to 2014. It is now a modern space where paintings are displayed aesthetically in opulent and elegant surroundings.

Dolmabahce Museum today

Today, this historically significant part of the Dolmabahce Palace is a wonderful museum that exhibits around 200 paintings from the 16th to the 20th century by renowned Turkish and international artists. Some of the artists whose work is displayed include Ivan Aivazowsky and Sultan Abdulmecid II. There are also paintings bought from the Goupil Gallery in Paris in the late 19th century, as well as a rich collection of works by Oriental artists and many other valuable paintings.




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Skip-the-Line Tickets to Dolmabahce Palace with Ottoman Harem Section
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Highlights Tour of Dolmabahce Palace & Ottoman Harem Section with Skip-the-Line Tickets
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Combo: Dolmabahce Palace + Hagia Sophia + Basilica Cistern Guided Tour
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Combo: Dolmabahce Palace Guided Tour + Bosphorus Cruise Tickets
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Combo: Hagia Sophia + Topkapi Palace + Basilica Cistern Guided Tours Tickets
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Frequently asked questions about Dolmabahce Museum

What is the Dolmabahce Museum?

This is a modern museum in the 19th-century Dolmabahce Palace that houses rare and beautiful paintings by Turkish and international artists from the 16th to the 20th century.

Why is Dolmabahce Museum famous?

The Dolmabahce Museum is housed in the section of the Palace where the Crown Princes of the Ottoman Empire used to reside. This historical palace was also the residence of the first President of the Turkish Republic, Kemal Ataturk. This elegant and splendid palace has been the seat of power for almost a century and is a definite must-see for tourists.

Where can I buy Dolmabahce Museum tickets?

You can book your tickets for Dolmabache Museum online.

How much are Dolmabahce Museum tickets?

The tickets for Dolmabahce Museum start from €30.

Can I visit Dolmabahce Museum with Dolmabahce Palace tickets?

Yes, buying Dolmabahce Palace tickets will allow you to visit the museum as well.

Are there guided tours available at Dolmabahce Museum?

Yes, you can take guided tours for Dolmabahce Museum.

Who designed Dolmabahce Museum?

As part of Dolmabahce Palace, the Museum was designed by Garabet Baliyan and Nigogayas Baliyan.

When was Dolmabahce Museum built?

Dolmabahce Museum was built in 1856 as part of Dolmabahce Palace but was renovated to house the museum in 2014.

What’s inside Dolmabahce Museum?

Dolmabahce Museum exhibits paintings done by Turkish and international artists from the 16th century to the 20th century.

What can I see at Dolmabahce Museum?

You can enjoy the historic paintings that chronicle the history of Turkey in general and the Ottoman Empire in particular. Also, outside the Museum, you can stroll through ancient picturesque gardens with beautiful views of the Bosphorus Strait and the Istanbul skyline. You will be on the European continent with a clear view of the Asian continent.

What famous artworks are inside Dolmabahce Museum?

Dolmabahce Museum has paintings by Turkish court painters like Fausto Zonaro, Stanislaw Chlebowski, Turkish artists like Şeker Ahmed Pasha, Osman Hamdi Bey, Hüseyin Zekai Pasha, and Hodja Ali Rıza. Others include a rich collection of oriental paintings and those brought from the Goupil Gallery, Paris, during the reign of Abdulaziz in the 19th century. More recent paintings include those done by Ivan Aivazovsky and Sultan Abdulmecid II.

What are the timings of Dolmabahce Museum?

You can visit Dolmabahce Museum from 9 AM to 5 PM.

Where is Dolmabahce Museum located?

Dolmabahce Museum is located along the Bosphorus Strait at Vişnezade, Dolmabahçe Cd., 34357 Beşiktaş, Istanbul.

Is Dolmabahce Museum wheelchair accessible?

Yes, Dolmabahce Museum can be accessed by wheelchair users.

Is photography allowed at Dolmabahce Museum?

No, photography is not permitted in Dolmabahce Museum.

Is there a dress code for visiting Dolmabahce Museum?

There is no dress code as such, but semi-formal wear is appropriate for the austere surroundings of this museum.