Gulhane Park is the oldest park in Istanbul, located near the Topkapi Palace and once part of it. Translated from Turkish, the name “Gülhane” means “House of Roses.” And the park did not accidentally get such a name, because in the spring-summer season more than 80 thousand roses bloom here, as well as thousands of tulips adorn flowerbeds. In winter, Gulkhan carpeted with forget-me-nots.
During the heyday of the Ottoman Empire, the modern gardens of the Topkapi Palace were located on the territory of the modern park. At that time Gulhane was closed, and only the Sultan and his retinue could walk here. In addition to roses, gardens were also decorated with numerous trees, among which were various palace pavilions, most of which were burned during a major fire in 1863.
At the end of the 19th century, Gulhane became accessible to absolutely everyone: during the next century, mass events were often held here, which eventually led to the gradual decay of the complex and its closure. It took about 3 years to restore the park, and in 2003 it again opened its doors to tens of thousands of visitors. During the restoration period, more than three hundred benches were installed in the Rose House, pedestrian bridges and terraces were repaired, and the number of plantings increased by almost 20%.
Today, Gulhane in Istanbul is a thriving tourist attraction that delights travelers not only with its lush landscapes, but also with monuments of architecture, as well as museums. Since the park is one of the largest in Istanbul, it was decided to organize several entrances to its territory at once. You can get here today for free. But for visiting some of its facilities will be charged.
Where is it and how to get there
Gulhane Park in Istanbul is located in the old urban district of Fatih near Sultanahmed Square, in the immediate vicinity of Topkapi Palace. The exact address of the property: Cankurtaran Mah., Gülhane Parkı, Fatih, İstanbul, Türkiye.
To get to the park, you need to get on the T 1 Kabataş – Bağcılar tram line and get to the Sultanahmet stop. The fare is 1.95 tl. Once in Sultanahmed Square, walk a little north of Hagia Sophia to Topkapi Palace. Gulhane is located at the northwestern walls of the castle.
If you planned to visit Topkapi and Gulhane on the same day, then getting into the park from the palace will be quite simple. Just go to the first courtyard of the castle and find the exit to the “House of Roses”. You can enter the former palace gardens from its northeastern part through Kennedy Caddesi Street. The park is available at any time of the day.
What else to see in the Sultanamet area, see this page , and find out which hotel to stay nearby here .
What can be seen in the park
Many visitors come to the park to slowly walk along its alleys, enjoy fragrant flower landscapes, take pictures with a statue of Ataturk and admire the local pools and fountains. However, more curious travelers prefer to explore the museums and monuments located here.
The very young institution of Istanbul, housed in the building of the former Sultan stables, will tell you about the history of Turkish science of the 13-16 centuries. At the main entrance to the museum you can see the globe in a glass cube, which has become an exact copy of an ancient invention dating from the 9th century. Many items related to astronomy, shipping, military equipment and architecture are exhibited inside. The museum is open from 09:00 to 17:00 in winter and from 09:00 to 19:00 in summer. Entrance fee is 10 tl.
The institution opened in 2011 and was named after the Honored Literary Figure of Turkey. In the gallery you can see personal items of famous writers of the country, as well as look at the library, in the collection of which there are more than 8 thousand books. On the ground floor of the museum is the Writers Cafe, where modern authors often gather and arrange literary discussions.
- The attraction is open on weekdays from 10:00 to 19:00.
- The entrance is free.
If you think that you don’t know enough about Turkey as a whole, check out this article .
The ready column is a marble monolith 15 meters high, which was supposedly built in the 3rd century. The object is considered one of the oldest monuments in Istanbul. Some historians claim that the column was previously supplemented with a statue of the Greek goddess Fortune and was built in her honor. Other scholars claim that the monolith is a symbol of the victory of the Roman emperor Claudius II over the Goths.
This divergence of opinion is proved by the fact that the column was not fully studied and requires additional archaeological research. The monument is located in the north-eastern part of the park and you can watch it at any time for free.
If you were not able to visit the Marble Terrace in the Topkapi Palace, then you have a great opportunity to enjoy incredible views from the observation deck and take unforgettable photos in the Gulhane Park in Istanbul. It offers a picturesque panorama of the Sea of Marmara, the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn Bay. Unlike the popular Topkapi, there are not so many tourists here, and the entrance to the site is free, and the views themselves are no worse.
- It is best to visit Gulhane after a tour of Topkapi . Here you can relax, in the summer, hide from the heat and restore strength.
- The park has an inexpensive restaurant serving delicious food. The price of meat and fish dishes varies between 20-35 tl, the cost of salads is 10-15 tl.
- We do not recommend visiting the park on holidays and weekends when numerous residents of Istanbul go here for picnics.
- It is worth considering that in the early morning hours some of the Gulhane alleys are still closed.
- Travelers visiting the park do not recommend going to the park in the evening when it becomes very crowded.
- It is best to walk around the “Rose House” in spring or summer when the park appears in all its splendor: flower beds are buried in tens of thousands of flowers, alleys are green, and fountains and pools gurgle merrily in different parts of the park.
Gulhane Park is a picturesque corner of Istanbul, where natural beauty is intertwined with history and science. Every traveler will be able to find a hobby for himself here: to contemplate nature, or to get acquainted with museums and monuments, or simply to taste delicious national dishes. And using our recommendations, you can organize the perfect walk in Gulhana.