Dolmabahce Palace

Middle East - Editor - 15 July 2009

Dolmabahce Palace

Travelers to Turkey should simply not overlook the chance to visit Dolmabahce Palace. Located in the magnificent city of Istanbul on the shore of the Bosphorus, this attraction is one of the finest examples of grand living to be found. You will find yourself simply blown away by the magnificence and opulence of this grand edifice.

The 19th century palace is everything you’d expect to see at a sultan’s palace and more. The structure is unbelievably big – its facade stretches nearly a quarter mile (1/2 kilometer) along the Bosphorus shore and the building itself includes 285 rooms and 43 large salons, amongst other things. Perhaps one of the most surprising decorations to be found inside is the Bohemian glass chandelier that dangles from the ceiling of the palace. This massive, glimmering source of light ways as much as 4.5 tons (4000 kgs)! Well known Ottoman-Armenian architects Karabet and Nikogos Balian were called in to design the building by Sultan Abdulmecit. As soon as construction was finished in 1856, the imperial family wasted little time moving out of their previous lodgings at Topkapi Palace to enjoy the European-style opulence of their new lodgings at Dolmabahce Palace. Today Dolmabahce Palace in Turkey is considered to be the grandest of all the Ottoman imperial palaces and a tour of this magnificent edifice is certainly worthwhile.

If you would like to visit Dolmabahce Palace you may well find the cheapest and easiest way to get there is via the Zeytinburnu-Findikli tram which will take you very close to the palace after travelling across the Golden Horn to Karakoy. You can get off the tram at Taksim Square from where you can enjoy a pleasant mile-long (1.6 km) walk downhill walk to Dolmabahce Palace. Returning to Taksim Square may prove a little more tedious and most people hire a taxi for the return journey. Dolmabahce Palace is closed on Monday and Thursday and visitors should keep in mind that due to its incredibly size they may spend as much as 2-3 hours touring the building. All tours are guided and it may be worthwhile to phone ahead to finalize your tour arrangements.


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