Istanbul Travel Guide

Istanbul Archaeological Museums

  • The museum was built in 1891.

  • The Sarcophagus of Alexander the Great

  • Lion at the Gate of Ishtar

  • The Sarcophagus of Crying Women

  • The Tiled Kiosk

  • Sarcophagi in the museum

Istanbul Archaeological Museums is made up three museums; the Tiled Kiosk, the Ancient Orient Museum and the Archaeological Museum. The founder of the museum was Osman Hamdi Bey. He inaugurated the Archaeological Museum on 1891. Today with more than one million works, it maintains its special position as one of the largest of its kind in the world.

The Tiled Kiosk
The oldest building in the complex of Museum is the Tiled Kiosk. The Tiled Kiosk, where samples of Turkish tile and ceramic works are exhibited, is the oldest civilian architectural work in İstanbul built  by Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror.

The two other buildings that were built later are close to the Tiled Kiosk. One of them is the building constructed as the first Academy of Fine Arts. Then it was reorganised as a museum, which opened in 1935. It was closed to visitors in 1963, and reopened in 1974 after restoration works. The Archaeological Museum is one of the few buildings in the world constructed as a museum building.

The Sarcophagus of Alexander the Great
On the ground floor of the Archaeological Museum, sculptures from the Ancient Age from the Archaic Era to the Roman Era may be seen on the right side, and world wide famous unique artifacts such as the Sarcophagus of Alexander the Great, the Sarcophagus of Crying Women and the Sarcophagus of Tabnit that came from the Royal Necropolis in Sidon on the left side. On the upper floor of the two-storey building, there are the Treasury section, 800.000 the Non-Islamic and Islamic Coin Cabinets and the Library which contains 7.000 books.

The Ancient Orient Museum
The collections of the Ancient Orient Museum contains artifacts from pre-Greek Anatolia and Mesopotamia and from pre-Islamic Egypt and Arabian Peninsula. Most of these artifacts were found during archaeological excavations carried out between late 19th century and the World War I, and brought to İstanbul.

The Ancient Orient Museum contains sections of Pre-Islamic Arabian Art, Egypt Collection, Mesopotamia Collection, Anatolia Collection, Urartu Collection.

Useful Information for Istanbul Archaeological Museums

Address Istanbul Arkeoloji Müzeleri Alemdar Cad. Osman Hamdi Bey Yokusu Sk, 34122, Sultanahmet / Fatih, ISTANBUL
Tel 0 (212) 520 77 40 - 41
Fax 0 (212) 527 43 00
Visiting hours Hours of Operation : 09:00 - 19:00 Hours of Ticket Sales : 09:00 - 18:00, The museum is closed on Mondays.
Entrance fee 15 TL