Disabled Access at Istanbul Topkapi Palace
Disabled access at Istanbul Topkapi Palace is possible, but there are several obstacles to full accessibility. Cobblestones and small slopes exist in the four courtyards and there are small marble door frames to get over inside the exhibition rooms. Most of the rooms have ramps to get over the marble door frames although some of the smaller door frames do not have ramps which may require assistance for a wheelchair user. The highlights are the Treasury, the Hall of Holy Relics, and the Harem, all of which are wheelchair accessible. The audioguide is excellent and can be bought after you pass through the metal detectors.
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The first courtyard leads to the ticket booth and has a slight incline leading up to it (4 star flatness, 5 star smoothness).
The second courtyard has 5 star flatness with a slightly uneven surface (4 star smoothness). The Council Chamber is a room on the left side of the second courtyard with two large steps to enter and is not worth the effort. The entrance to the harem is also in the second courtyard. The path through the harem has small ramps to get between rooms except for one room that has a step to get into. There are some 4 star smooth cobblestones in the harem. Entrance to the harem costs extra but is worth it.
Disabled access at Istanbul Topkapi Palace third courtyard has 5 star smoothness and 4 star flatness. The Sultan’s Reception Hall and the Library of Ahmet III are buildings in the middle of the third courtyard and both have steps to enter. The Imperial Treasury (housing the Topkapi Dagger) is in the far right corner and has ramp access although a wheelchair user will probably need assistance going over the slick marble door frames between rooms. The Hall of Holy Relics is in the back left corner of the third courtyard and has wheelchair access by several ramps. A wheelchair user may need assistance in these rooms too.
The fourth courtyard is reached via a path with a staircase or a path with a slope (3 star flatness) with cobblestones (3 star smoothness). It is not worth the effort.
Both of the cafés in the fourth courtyard have steps. The café in the second courtyard near the Council Chamber is step-free. The restroom to the right of the ticket booth is wheelchair accessible as is the disabled restroom in the third courtyard. The restrooms in the second and fourth courtyards have steps.
Is there an accessible entrance? Yes, the main entrance (after the ticket office and before the metal detectors) has wheelchair accessible ramps to get over the marble door frame.
Where is it located? Southwest of the building
Are there steps to get into the building? No
Is the door push/pull, revolving, automated by a button, or motion activated? Staff will open a gate for wheelchairs to get through. Everyone else will walk through metal detectors.
Where is the closest place that cars/taxis can drop-off people? At the entrance to the first courtyard which is located at the west corner of Hagia Sophia.
What are the nearby tram stations?
Are there cobblestones or hills leading to the entrance? An upward slope (4 star flatness) leading to the ticket booth
What percentage of the attraction can be viewed without having to go up steps? 80%
Which parts are not accessible? Disabled access at Istanbul Topkapi Palace is poor in the Sultan’s Reception Hall, Library of Ahmet III, Council Chamber, a couple of cafés, a couple of restrooms
Are there loaner wheelchairs? Yes
Is there an accessible bathroom? Yes
Is the door wide enough for a wheelchair? Yes
Are there grab bars? Yes
Is there a space to position a wheelchair next to the toilet? Yes
Are there guided tours that don’t have to go up steps? No guided tours. There is an audioguide.
Does advance notice need to be given for…
…handicapped parking? No
…opening of an accessible entrance? No
…loaner wheelchairs? No
…accessible tours? No tours
Is there a discount for someone with a disability and/or their companion? No discount at the main entrance, free admission for wheelchair user at the harem.
Opening Hours: 9 am to 7 pm every day except Tuesday
How many hours do most able-bodied tourists spend there on their first visit? 3 hours avg (2.5 min, 4 max)
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