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Istanbul Archaeology Museums

If you are interested archeology, you shouldn’t miss the chance of visiting Archeology Museum (Arkeoloji Müzesi) in Istanbul. Lots of people mostly skip this hidden gem. Place offers one of the world’s richest  ancient artifacts

There are three archeological museums which are located in Eminönü district, Gülhane Parkı and Topkapı Palace.The complex has three parts: the Archaeology Museum (Arkeoloji Müzesi), the Museum of the Ancient Orient (Eski Şark Eserler Müzesi) and the Tiled Pavilion (Çinili Köşk). The complex can be easily reached by walking from the world-famous Topkapı Palace.

The Ottoman emperor Abdülaziz  (1861–1876) was impressed by the museums in London and Paris then he decided to order an archaeological museum to be constituted in Istanbul. The first curator and founder of the museum was Osman Hamdi Bey. When government decided to protecti cultural goods, many state governors sent artefacts to the Ankara. Ottoman Empire  also collected some special pieces from Europe, Asia and Africa, so you are able to see countless treasures in the museums.

Osman Hamdi Bey started to built main building in 1881, attaining its present form in 1908. It was built by famous architect Alexander Vallaury who was designed Pera Palace in Istanbul.

My favourite attractions here are the fabulous  sarcophagus of Alexander the Great depicting, the blue tiled Karaman Mihrab, the fasinating Tiled Pavilion, and the Treaty of Kadesh (earliest surviving peace around the world)

You can reach the Archaeology Museum by going left down the hill in Topkapi Palace’s first courtyard, or via Gülhane Park.

The Ottoman Empire was in the process of Westernizing therefore was opening this museum reflecting the country’s new direction.

You will be impressed by stunning artifacts in the rooms just at your first step inside the place.The Sarcophagi of Sidon. Found during a famous dig in modern-day Lebanon, these highly preserved and kindly decorated coffins held the bones of emperor.

The museum features objects found across the Ottoman Empire and ancient Byzantine, with mummies and historic statues. A large exhibit on the second floor is dedicated to the archaeological history of Istanbul Another exhibit is dedicated to objects from the regions neighboring Turkey, Cyprus and Syria.

You should spare at least an hour for these outstanding museums or much longer than that. But you can easily give a break at the outdoor cafe in garden. I highly recommend this place, especially for the archeology lovers.