Istanbul – Topkapi Palace

12/3 – today dawned sunny and warm (63!), so we decided to take advantage of the nice weather by visiting the Topkapi Palace Museum and gardens, home of rich sultans and their harems since 1459. image

The entrance fee was steep, and after we paid the price, we were informed that no picture-taking was permitted in any of the display rooms. Drat! How’s a person to blog with no pix? I wasn’t the only one disappointed, and we tourists kept the guards hopping in each room as they ran to stick their hands in front of our lenses, yelling, “No photo, Madame!” Some rooms showed old china and silverware, and I snapped a few shots just because…

The item on the right is a sherbet dispenser, which I thought was kind of neat…

Other rooms held jewel-encrusted clothing, artifacts and weaponry:

The bottom pic is borrowed from the Internet.

The final rooms held religious relics, and I didn’t dare try to get a picture there, but what an inventory! Not only did they display many relics of The Prophet, including his beard, a tooth, his footprint, his sword and bow, but they also had:

  • The Saucepan of Abraham
  • The Staff of Moses
  • The Sword of David
  • The Turban of Joseph
  • The Hand of John
  • …and I thought Catholics cornered the market on relics!

    Photography was permitted in the outer buildings, including the Circumcision Room.

    The grounds were lovely, although probably more so when the roses bloom in summer.

    The Palace is on the shore of the Bospherus, with some great (albeit slightly smoggy) views:image

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    An excellent day!

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