Monday, 23 November 2015

The Harem, Istanbul

The Harem is situated in the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. The Topkapi Palace was one of the residences of the Ottoman sultans for almost 400 years (1465-1865). The world harem in Arabic means "forbidden". To visit the Harem you have to pay an extra entrance fee, but it was certainly worth it.

The Harem had 400 rooms and in it lived the wives, slaves and concubines of the Sultan, also the children and servants and the only men allowed were black eunuchs. Once the women were in here they were not allowed out, there were up to 800 women imprisoned here.

As you can imagine you cannot visit all the rooms but some of the rooms you can see are the Sultan`s bedroom, the apartments of the Queen Mother and the courtyard of the Eunuchs. The place is full of amazing tiles, mosaics, fantastic furniture and doorways.

The Topkapi Palace is one of the big tourist sites in Istanbul and you really need at least half a day to take it all in.

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