Istanbul Archaeological Museum

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
4.5 3835 Reviews
#27 in Istanbul

What's there?

Welcome to the thousands of years of history of the lands once controlled by the Ottoman Empire, the Roman Empire and many more civilizations compiled into a single place, the Istanbul Archaeological Museum. The amazing collection of the museum includes items such as the sarcophagus believed to belong to Alexander The Great, the Hammurabi code, a marble lion from the Mausoleum of Mausolus (one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World) and so many relics which belonged to countless civilizations.

The museum was founded in 1869 by the order of the Ottoman Empire as the Imperial Museum and was originally located at the Hagia Irene church. The museum is composed by 3 buildings:

•The Tiled Kiosk Museum (which is one of the oldest Ottoman buildings in Istanbul, built in 1472 A.D.) which hosts a collection of Turkish tiles and ceramic works.

•The Ancient Orient Museum (which used to be the Academy of Fine Arts in the Ottoman Empire) with a collection of artifact from pre-Greek Anatolia and Mesopotamia and pre-Islamic Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula, such as the oldest love poem or the Code of Hammurabi.

•The Archaeological Museum (one of the few buildings in the world built specifically as a museum) which hosts a vast array of ancient artifacts ranging from clay items to coins to huge sarcophaguses.

Admission included

Avoid paying the €12 admission fee at the Istanbul Archaeological Museum and skip the ticket queues with Istanbul Tourist Pass.

Buy a Pass

Hours & schedule

The Istanbul Archaeological Museum opens everyday between 09.00am - 07.00pm and last admission is 1 hour before the closing hour.

How to get there?

Take the T1 Tram Line and get off at the Gülhane Park stop. Enter the main gates of the park, turn right and go up the hill until you find the entrance to the museum on the left-hand side.

Get Directions


Please note that this attraction is not accessible with the mobile pass that is e-mailed to you after purchase. You need to use the MuseumPass card to enter to the museum which comes free with your Istanbul Tourist Pass purchase.

You have only one time admission to the fortress with the Museum Pass Istanbul.

People     Istanbul Archaeological Museum

  • "Im only giving it 4 stars because I did not see Alexander’s sarcophagus as part of the building have been closed for restoration. Nonetheless there was a lot of artefacts so if you are a history buff, be prepared to spend a few hours. A tip to getting in is to buy a museum pass that lets you enter several museum without having to queue for a ticket. "

    reviewed on TripAdvisor
  • "A great visit here, as a history buff quite excited to go here. Like so many other historic buildings in Istanbul this too was under construction in some parts. Don't let that put you off there was still plenty to see and enjoy.. so we thought. do Purchase the 5 day pass if you can to get you in to a variety of museums... well worth it .. "

    Aurora S
    reviewed on TripAdvisor
  • "Or any day for that matter. The Archaeological Museum forms part of the Istanbul Museum Pass. Well worth a look and some interesting artefacts to boot.

    A bit under restoration to the building during my visit, however, did not spoil the enjoyment.


    Richard B
    reviewed on TripAdvisor

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