Naval Museum Istanbul: what to see, tickets, visiting tips

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Located in the Besiktas district of Istanbul, overlooking the Bosphorus, the Naval Museum is the largest in Turkey in the field of maritime and at the same time one of the few museums in the world in terms of the diversity of its collections. The museum is housed in the historic Besitas waterfront building, which was built in the 18th century and served as the headquarters of the Ottoman Navy.

Fast Facts about Istanbul Naval Museum

  • The museum is housed in the former Ottoman naval arsenal, which was constructed during the 16th century.
  • The museum was opened to the public in 1897 and is one of the oldest museums in Turkey.
  • The museum has a vast collection of naval artifacts, including historic ships, submarines, torpedoes, mines, and cannons.
  • The museum’s highlight is the floating exhibit of the Ottoman-era battleship Turgut Reis, which was named after the famous Turkish admiral and is the largest exhibit in the museum.
  • The museum also has a collection of Ottoman-era naval uniforms, weapons, and equipment.
  • Visitors can also explore the interactive exhibits that showcase the development of the Turkish Navy and its role in various battles.
  • The museum is open every day except Mondays and Tuesdays, and the entrance fee is affordable.
  • The museum also offers guided tours for visitors to learn more about the history and significance of the naval artifacts on display.

What to Expect & See?

The museum consists of the Main Exhibition Building, Historical Boats Gallery, Cultural Site and Open Exhibition Areas. The sections that show the most interest to the visitors coming to the museum are the Sultan Boats section, where the decorated boats are exhibited, and the Atatürk Room.

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The museum features a wide range of exhibits, including models of Ottoman and Turkish naval vessels, weapons, uniforms, and other naval artifacts. Visitors can also see the oldest known surviving Turkish flag, which dates back to the early 19th century.

One of the highlights of the museum is the collection of naval paintings, which features works by famous Turkish artists such as Osman Hamdi Bey, Halil Pasha, and Hoca Ali Riza. These paintings provide a unique glimpse into the naval history of Turkey and its relationship with the sea.

In addition to the exhibits, the museum also offers educational programs and workshops for children and adults. Visitors can learn about the history of the Ottoman Navy and the modern Turkish Navy, as well as the science of navigation and naval warfare.

The Naval Museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in the history of naval warfare and maritime culture in Turkey. Its unique location and fascinating exhibits make it a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

Visiting Information

The Istanbul Naval Museum is located in the Besiktas district of Istanbul, on the shore of the Bosphorus strait.

The easiest way to reach the museum is by using public transportation. Visitors can take the tram line to the Kabatas Station and then walk or take a short taxi or public bus ride to Besiktas. There are also ferry services available from various locations along the Bosphorus that stop at the Besiktas Ferry Terminal, which is a short walk from the museum.

The museum is open every day except Mondays from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. The ticket office closes at 3:00 pm, so it is recommended to arrive early to allow enough time for a visit. The museum is closed on major public holidays, so visitors should check the schedule before planning their trip.

It is recommended to allow at least two hours for a visit to the Istanbul Naval Museum in order to fully explore the exhibits and learn about the history of the Turkish navy. The museum also offers guided tours, which can provide visitors with more in-depth information about the displays and artifacts.

There are also several cafes and restaurants located in the museum’s vicinity, offering visitors the chance to relax and enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee after their visit.

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