Best Museums in Turkey

Updated on Jul 04, 2024 | Turkey e-Visa

Turkey is a perfect country to explore the East and West cultures, for Turkey itself connects the East and West. Enjoying the leisure and adventures offered in Turkey sounds like an interesting vacation, but it is incomplete without visiting the museums in Turkey. Visiting museums provides vivid insight into the culture, art, history, lifestyle and practices of ancient civilizations. The museum holds important artifacts, arts and ruins that belong to various periods. 

Each museum in Turkey holds significant importance, particularly in terms of the place, emperor, civilization, human settlement, etc. The Museum in Turkey, with all its history, provides an endless amusement and a captivating experience for travellers. Among all the museums, here’s a list of a few best museums in Turkey. 

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Hagia Sophia Museum

Hagia Sophia Museum is one of the most-visited and best museums in Istanbul. The museum is situated near the Hagia Sophia Mosque, which holds a long history dating back to the old centuries. The museum tells the fascinating architecture and history of the Hagia Sophia Mosque. Hagia Sophia Museum exhibits the artifacts that belong to the Byzantine period, dating back to the ancient period when Hagia Sophia was first constructed as a Byzantine Church. Travellers can enjoy the 3D display which portrays the journey of Hagia Sophia, the conversion of the church to a mosque. The museum still retains the arches, artworks, mosaics, exterior walls, columns, etc., that represent the conversion of the cathedral. 

Topkapi Palace Museum

Topkapi Palace is a significant landmark in the history of Turkey. The palace in Istanbul served as the administrative headquarters and home of the Ottoman Empire. The Topkapi Palace Museum exhibits the artifacts, books and manuscripts of the Ottoman period. Besides the imperial collection, the museum seals the history, culture and civilization of the Ottoman Empire within itself. The palace whispers the long past history of the great empire through its architectural styles. The museum displays the imperial treasury that belong to the Sultans and the arms and weapons used by them and their army.  The most famous artifact of the museum is the Topkapi Dagger decked with emeralds and the Spoonmaker’s Diamond.

Museum of Anatolian Civilizations

The Anatolian Civilization Museum in Ankara province is situated near the Ankara Castle. The museum is the home to artifacts and original work of the Anatolian Civilization. The artifacts of the Anatolian Civilization are depicted in chronological order, starting from the Paleolithic age to the present date. The museum was founded in 1921, which eventually turned 100 years in the year 2021. The gold, bronze, glass and marble works exhibited in the museum help to understand the rich skills, unique styles and traditions of various civilizations. Visiting the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations provides a fantastic journey into the past. Travellers can witness the Phrygian sculptures, Urartian ivory art, Late Hittite artifacts and many more. 

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Ephesus Archaeological Museum

Ephesus Archaeological Museum is an astonishing museum in the ancient city Ephesus, Izmir, Turkey. The museum is segregated into various halls and rooms such as The Hall of Artemis, The Coins Room, The Terrace Houses Findings Room, The Hall of The Fountain Relics, etc. The artifacts are arranged according to the theme of each room in the museum. The museum is home to the two famous and giant statues of Artemis, the “Beautiful Artemis and the Great Artemis”.  The Hall of Recent finds exhibits artifacts and objects dating to the Byzantine period. The museum is home to various artifacts, coins, oil lamps and ruins of tombs, homes and buildings. The Ivory Frieze is one of the most remarkable artifacts in the museum. 

Troy Museum

The Troy Museum is situated at the entrance of the ancient Troy city on the northwest coast of Asia Minor, Turkey. The museum is built at a magnificent height and the display of artifacts is collected from the Troy archaeological site. The exhibition of artifacts in Troy is divided into four levels, namely the Layers of Troy, Troy Excavation History, Cities of Troad and Ancient World. The artifacts are presented in chronological timeline order including some of the oldest painted vessels, cooking vessels, daily life habits, urban development, arts, technological changes, etc. The famous attraction in the Troy Museum is the Trojan Treasure displayed on the lowest floor. The floor displays some golden objects and precious golden jewellery

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Goreme Open Air Museum

The Goreme Open Air Museum in Cappadocia holds archaeological importance in the history of Turkey. The museum is famous for its rock-cut dwelling and cave churches. The churches of the museum date back to the Byzantine period in the 12th century and the walls of the museum are decorated with beautiful frescoes. The Tokali Church, the largest and 1000-year-old church, is situated in the Goreme Open Air Museum. The museum is filled with numerous churches, and the remarkable one is the “Dark Church” of the 12th century. Visiting the Karanlik Kilise or Dark Church requires an additional fee, the wall painting or frescoes are clearer and more evident than the others. A few other unique churches are The Apple Church and The St. Basil's Church.

Zeugma Mosaic Museum

The Zeugma Mosaic Museum gained the name of the world’s biggest mosaic museum. The museum consists of ancient artworks and famous mosaics found in Zeugma. The travellers can witness the recreated ancient environment inside the museum including, buildings, walls, fountains, streets, etc., exhibiting the tradition, culture, lifestyle and habits of the ancient people. The Zeugma Mosaic Museum showcases mosaics from the Roman and Late Antique periods, including the Gypsy Girl mosaic. Besides the mosaics of the Greek and Roman eras, the museum is also home to various frescoes, fountains, artifacts, statues, limestone statues and bronze Mars statues. Most of the Greek Mosaic in the Zeugma Mosaic Museum dates back to the 2nd century BC

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Turkey has some of the well-preserved museums in the world. Besides the above-mentioned museums, Turkey also offers another fascinating museum worth giving a visit. A trip to some of them will provide valuable insight about the development of culture and civilization in Turkey. The artifacts that portray the skills and craftsmanship of the ancient people will fascinate the mind and offer a visual treat.


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