This place is well-known as the biggest palace in Turkey. Located on the Bosphorus shore in Besiktas, the district of Istanbul on the European side, this magnificent palace has been astonishing everybody since 1854. While building this palace, architects avoided traditional Ottoman palace architecture. Instead, they took examples from European architecture – that’s why this palace looks so European-like, especially from the Bosphorus side.
At the same time, Dolmabahce Palace can boast luxury that even European palaces could not afford. For example, its ceilings carry 14 tons of gold in the form of gold leaf. In addition, this palace has the biggest Bohemian crystal chandelier in the world. This present from Queen Victoria has 750 lamps and weighs 4,5 tons.
Dolmabahce Palace is also known as the last palace of the Turkish Ottomans. It served as the administrative center of the country from 1856 to 1922. Later, the Turkish republic was founded, and all administrative functions were transferred from Istanbul to Ankara, the new capital. However, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the first Turkish president, occupied one room here and used it as a home while visiting Istanbul. This is the room where he died in 1938. He passed away at 9:05 AM, and from that time all clocks in the palace are stopped, reminding about this tragic for Turkey moment and showing the amount of respect to the late President.
Go to Kabataş Train or ferry station, then walk a bit along Bosphorus