Dolmabahce Palace

Dolmabahce Palace: Your Complete Visitor’s Guide

Welcome all you travelers! In case you are planning to go to Istanbul, then there is one place in particular that must capture your attention Dolmabahce Palace. Indeed, this is a precious treasure through which its visitors can peer into the luxurious life of the Ottoman Empire. In this guide I will tell you how to make the best out of your visit to this amazing palace.

Dolmabahce Palace Garden

Dolmabahce Palace Garden

Getting There

Let us begin with how to get there. This palace is situated at Besiktas district on European shore of Bosphorus. If your accommodation is within Sultanahmet area, it would be best if you took a tram and bus there. Take T1 tram line up to Kabatas from where it’s only few steps away to reach the palace complex. Alternatively, take a cab or even consider walking as long as you’re not too lazy. Since Istanbul traffic could be horrible; public transport may work for you most times.

Dolmabahce Palace Interior

Dolmabahce Palace Interior

Dolmabahce Palace Opening Hours & Tickets

The place operates daily except Mondays from 9:00 AM till 6:00 PM (last admission at 5:30 PM so hurry up). Although ticket prices might seem a little bit high by trust me they worth every cent. As of 2024, entry cost approximately TL1050 with full tour including Selamlık (administrative quarter) and Harem (women’s rooms).

What to Expect

Once you get into Dolmabahce Palace, it is like walking in another world. The palace, constructed during the mid-19th century Abdulmejid I, was the main administrative center of the Ottoman Empire. It is incredibly splendid and has crystal chandeliers, gold leafing and beautiful frescoes all around.

Highlights of the Dolmabahce Palace:

Crystal Staircase: This part of the palace may be considered as its most Instagrammable destination. It’s a huge staircase made out of Baccarat crystals, brass and mahogany wood. Absolutely a must see!

Ceremonial Hall: This giant hall is really breathtaking. They say that it is one of the largest ballrooms in the globe with Bohemian crystal chandelier weighing up to 4.5 tons.

Harem: These are private apartments of sultan’s family. In this section guests can have insight into their everyday life which does not differ much from other parts of Dolmabahce Palace where they live.

Most Recommended Tours

Dolmabahce Palace Inside View

Dolmabahce Palace Inside View

Tips for your visit:

Wear comfortable shoes: We suggest you wear appropriate foot gear because there’s a lot of walking involved.

Book your tickets in advance: Especially at peak tourist time, like summer it might be difficult to find an available place inside Dolma Bahce Palace so book early on-line to save some time.

Take the Guided Tour: The history of each room and artifact is amazing, and it really adds to your time there when you have a guide with you. If you like, audio guides can be made available for your convenience.

Photography Rules: Photography is allowed in some sections of palace while others may require that photography should not be taken. Check the signs to see if photography is allowed.

Check the Weather: Some parts of the palace grounds are outside; therefore, ensure that you know what weather conditions to expect before dressing up.




Dolmabahce Palace Gate Door

Dolmabahce Palace Gate Door

Nearby Attractions

After your visit, there are many other attractions around that you may want to explore. You would love going for a walk along Bosphorus or visiting Dolmabahce Mosque nearby or even going to Besiktas which is an exciting neighborhood where traditional food and shopping malls are found.

So, this is our  guide to seeing Dolmabahce Palace. It’s full of history and beauty and I bet it will be one of the highlights of your trip to Istanbul. Have a safe journey and enjoy every minute!


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