First, about getting there: it's up near the northern end, i.e. the beginning, of the Golden Horn. We took a regular ferry (Şehir Hatları) to Eyüp for the sake of sightseeing along the way, and then happened to see, at the dock at Eyüp, little boats under signs that advertised transport to Miniaturk. For TL 20 the four of us were able to take a delightful ride further up the Horn to get there. Highly recommended in and of itself! FYI: we took a cab from Miniaturk back to the Galata Bridge for TL 20.
Miniaturk itself was fun. I was impressed by the number of monuments it has (over 100), by the attention to detail they show, and by how many centuries of architecture and history in Turkey they represent. There are miniature versions of the expected buildings: Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque and Galata Tower from Istanbul, as well as the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, the Altar of Zeus at Pergamon and the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus. But we also saw beautiful, detailed models of some of the most famous examples of Selcuk architecture, including Ince Minareli Medrese in Konya and Gök Medrese in Sivas. (They made my husband want to travel to central Turkey!). There are also a couple of models of late 19th-century Turkish domestic architecture. Interspersed among these are modern 'wonders' like the Istanbul airport and a brackish pond with models of the famous green Istanbul ferry boats floating on it.
Cost: TL 10 per adult. There is a very small indoor display about Çanakkale (Gallipoli); the one at the Military Museum is much better. Also there are brief, not particularly enlightening recordings playable at each miniature, but the real fun is just to stroll like a giant among the models. Children may enjoy the two giant-size chess sets, the playground or the little train that they can ride around the site.
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