Istanbul Archaeology Museum marks a milestone in the history of Turkish museums and its heritage dates back nearly 600 years. So many historical treasures were smuggled abroad until however the Istanbul Archaeology Museum opened to preserve and exhibit the most precious artifacts.
The buildings of the Istanbul Archaeological Museums are among the top ten structures specifically designed as a museum in the world. The collections, which date back to Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror, have been inherited from the Ottomans and attains its present wealth due to the many excavation projects that have been conducted over time. The process with which the museum became one of the world’s leading museums started in 1881 when the son of Grand Vizier Edhem Pasha, Osman Hamdi Bey, was appointed as the director of the museum. Not only did Osman Hamdi Bey take the museum to the public, but he also personally conducted excavations to enrich the collection of the museum. The museum, taking advantage of a fertile geography with tens of thousands of years of history, contains works envied throughout the world.
Home to around one million artifacts, one day is never enough for an attentive visitor. The summer opening and closing hours for visitors are from April 15 to October 2 between 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.. The winter opening and closing hours for visitors are from October 3 to April 14 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.. The museum is located on Osman Hamdi Bey Yokuşu that leads up to the Topkapı Palace from the entrance of Gülhane Park. There are many options to reach the museum. You can walk to the museum from the Gülhane stop on the Bağcılar-Kabataş Tram Line. If you are arriving from the Anatolian Side, take a ferry to Eminönü or Kabataş and then switch to the tram line.