Gülhane Park was once the outer garden of Topkapı Palace, accessed only by the royal court. These days crowds of locals come here to picnic under the many trees, promenade past the formally planted flowerbeds, and enjoy wonderful views over the Golden Horn and Sea of Marmara from the Set Ãœstü Çay Bahçesi on the park”s northeastern edge. Recent beautification works have seen improvements to walkways and amenities, and have included the opening of a new museum, the Ä°stanbul Museum of the History of Science & Technology in Islam . Next to the southern entrance is the Alay (Parade Kiosk), now open to the public as the Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar Literature Museum Library. Across the street and 100m northwest of the park”s main gate is an outrageously curvaceous rococo gate leading into the precincts of what was once the grand vizierate, or Ottoman prime ministry, known in the West as the Sublime Porte . Today the buildings beyond the gate hold various offices of the Istanbul provincial government (the Vilayeti).

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