The location is unique. Placed directly on the banks of the Golden Horn, surrounded by the then narrow growth of poplars, its pictures reflected in the numerous mirrors on the exterior walls of the building. Therefore, this summer palace received its meaningful name “Aynalıkavak” – which means “mirrored poplar”.
The topic of music plays a very central role in the Aynalı Kavak Palace. Turkish music history was made here. The owner of the palace at that time, Sultan Selim III, was regarded as an important music connoisseur and was famous for his own works. Since the beginning of the 19th century he has made the palace a meeting place for musicians and composers from all over the country.
Even today, this tradition is continued by museum management. During the summer months, concerts are still regularly held in the garden of the palace, giving you an impressive insight into Turkish classical music. Even the original instruments from the museum are used in some performances. Today, the Aynali Kavak Palace Concerts have gained a worldwide reputation. So this is a must-do for all music lovers!
As soon as you enter the palace, you feel like you are on a journey through time. The porch leads to the sumptuous reception room. On the lower floor of the two-storey building is the museum with an impressive collection of old Turkish musical instruments. The countless huge windows facing the sea and the high dome immediately catch the eye. The blue walls are adorned with golden inscriptions. The famous Turkish poets of that time, Sheikh Galip and Enduruni Fazıl, wrote their poems full of praise for the Sultan there. These special handwritings give the palace its unique touch.