CK Go Places Search Engine

Saturday 29 September 2007

Top Ten Sights in Istanbul – No. 7: Dolmabahçe Sarayi

The Dolmabahçe Palace (Dolmabahçe Sarayi) was built in 1856 under the commission of Sultan Abdül Mecit. This was the time when the Ottoman Empire was in decline and the construction of the palace was only possible with the financing from foreign banks.

There are two main parts of the palace. The Slamlik consists of the state rooms and the enormous Ceremonial Hall; whereas the Harem houses the private rooms of the Sultan and his entourage.

The clock tower near the Imperial Gate of the palace.

The Imperial Gate which was once used exclusively by the sultan his ministers, and it is now the main entrance to the palace compound.

A gate along the main axis of the palace layout.

The Imperial Garden in front of the palace with the Swan Fountain in the middle. This was built in the 16th century on recovered land, hence the name Dolmabahçe, which literally means "Filled-in Garden."

The main entrance to the palace building.

A private visit to the palace main building is prohibited, so I have to resort to a guided tour. I didn't have to pay extra for the guided tour as it is already included in the ticket.

An event which looks like a wedding reception being set up at the courtyard right in front of the main palace building.

The workers were busy with the event preparation.

When I was passing through the security checkpoint at the main entrance of the palace building, a small incidence happened. I was carrying quite a big camera backpack which one of my friends referred to as 'the five-kilogram bag,' consisting of a detachable haversack and a belt-pouch. The security guards insisted that I put my bag at the clog room before I can enter the palace. I however insisted that I have to carry the bag with me as I'm a photographer and I need all the equipment with me by showing them the contents in the bag.

It was a mistake revealing to them that the bag is 'transformable' into a haversack and a belt-pouch while showing them the bag contents! They then insisted again I put either part of the bag in the clog room, so I attached back the haversack to the belt-pouch and convinced them that it is one single backpack again. I got my way through my articulation of convincing them it is just a 'small' bag as compared to my body size by showing them how I'm going to carry the bag inside the palace. At the end, I have every single personal belonging with me inside the palace, haha. :D

Part of the Crystal Staircase made from Baccarat crystal.

While I as touring the Slamlik, I met with a Icelandic professor in dentistry from Sweden who was also travelling alone in Turkey. She has been to many parts of the world, including South East Asia.

One of the state rooms in the Slamlik.

While waiting for the second part of our tour through Harem, the Icelandic professor shared with me one of her travelling experience which I find very interesting. She was once on a cruise through the Panama Canal and the tour was delayed for more than four hours due to a stupid U.S. U-boat (as according to her) passing by the canal. When this was announced on board the cruise ship, the Americans clapped and cheered. She found the act stupid, childish and arrogant, and she hated that had delayed the schedule of her tour. I shared the same feeling too, haha! :D

One of the halls in the Harem. Harem was derived from the Arabic word 'haram' which literally means 'forbidden.'

The ceiling of the bathroom was built to direct natural light through the openings.

Another type of bathroom ceiling directing the sunlight for natural lighting.

If you would like to read more of my travelogues on Istanbul, here are the links:-

No comments:

Recent Posts

Powered by Blogger Widgets

Recent Comments

Powered by Blogger Widgets