The Archaeological museum in Istanbul is one of the most beautiful and important museums in Istanbul. It is located in the old town, in the district of Eminönü in the extreme southeast of the European part of Istanbul. The museum is divided into three different departments. The Museum of Archaeology, Museum of the Ancient Orient and also a museum of Islamic Art.
It was opened in the year 1896 by the painter and archaeologist Osman Hamdi Bey and by Sultan Abdülhamid II. The museum is built in the neoclassical style. Opposite the archaeological museum is the ancient Near Eastern museum with finds from Mesopotamia and the Hittites culture.
All in all, the museum houses more than a million objects from almost all eras and cultures of world history. The finds originate from today’s Türkey and from the Turkish areas in the Middle East. Among the collections of the museum are various and important works of peoples from the Balkans to Africa, from Anatolia and Mesopotamia to the Arabian Peninsula and Afghanistan, which were formerly under Ottoman rule.
It has more than one million works of different cultures and today still retains its deserved place between the world’s largest museums.
The Archaeological Museum is a complex consisting of the two other buildings that house the Museum of Ancient Near Eastern Art and the Islamic Ceramics Museum. In 1991 it was awarded the Museum award of the Council of Europe.