"The Dolmabahçe Palace" Dolmabahce Palace Tip by mvtouring

Dolmabahce Palace, Istanbul: 102 reviews and 242 photos


The beautiful Dolmabahçe Palace is located at the European side of the Bosporus and it served as the main administrative center of the Ottoman Empire from 1853 to 1922, apart from a twenty-year interval (1889-1909) in which the Yıldız Palace was used.

Dolmabahçe was built between 1843 and 1856 by Armenian architect Garabet Balyan and commissioned by Sultan Abdülmecid I, the 31st Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. The palace design and décor reflects the increasing influence of European cultural standards on Ottoman culture. Neo-Classic, Baroque, Rococo and Ottoman styles all blend together into glittering opulence and grandeur. The 45,000 square metre palace cost a mere five million Ottoman gold pounds, the equivalent of 35 tonnes of gold? 14 tonnes of which went into the decoration alone.

Previously, the Sultan and his family lived at Topkapı Sarayı, but as Topkapı was lacking in contemporary luxury and style, Abdülmecid decided to build Dolmabahçe. Topkapı has exquisite examples of Iznik tiles and Ottoman carving, compared to Dolmabahçe, which has lots of gold and crystal.

The only way to see the inside of Dolmabahçe is with a guided tour, but be sure that you get there early as they only allow a certain amount of visitors per day. The tour last approx 1 hour and if you want to see the harem as well, you have to pay for that too and that is also done per guided tour which also last approx 1 hour.

Address: Visnezade Mh., Beskitas district
Phone: +90 212 236 9000
Website: http://www.millisaraylar.gov.tr/

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Oct 9, 2009
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