How to Visit Topkapi Palace

Written by Vero

Topkapi Palace History

Iconic monument: Topkapi Palace, a must-see in Istanbul.

Ottoman Empire's center: Administrative hub from 1465 to 1853, largest surviving palace.

Grand construction: Built by Sultan Mehmed II, completed in 1465.

How to Get to Topkapi Palace and Tickets

Convenient transportation: Tram is the easiest way to reach Topkapi Palace.

Plan your visit: Buy tickets online, arrive early to avoid queues.

Cream Section Separator

What to See  in Topkapi Palace: Palace Areas

The Topkapi Palace is  divided into the third,  second, and first courtyard. Start at the third courtyard and progress to the first courtyard for a comprehensive visit.

First and Second Patio

The first courtyard features a beautiful garden and the impressive Imperial Gate. The second courtyard houses the administrative department and hosts important ceremonies. Over 1,000 people once worked in palace these kitchens.

Third Patio

The third courtyard is accessible through the Gate of Felicity and houses the Imperial Center of Higher Education, Sultan's Private Treasury, and rooms of sacred relics. The fourth courtyard has a garden pavilion and Baghdad Pavilion.

The Harem of Topkapi Palace

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– The Harem of Topkapi Palace served as the private refuge of the Ottoman sultan and his family. – Located next to the third courtyard, the Harem has around 400 rooms and housed the sultan's family, concubines, and staff.

Why is It Called the “Harem”?

– The term "Harem" originates from Arabic, meaning a sacred and exclusive space for women.

– It played a vital role in politics, education, and the imperial lineage.

– The Harem was off-limits to the public and served as a private residence.

The Spoonmaker’s Diamond

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The Spoonmaker's Diamond, a yellow 86-carat diamond, is a prized treasure at Topkapi Palace. Legend says a slave discovered it in India and brought it to Constantinople.

The Treasury of Topkapi Palace

– The treasury at Topkapi Palace showcases a diverse collection of precious items, including jewelry, diamonds, and gemstones.