Saturday, March 24, 2012

Exploring Istanbul: Magic Ice Museum

There are lots of things to do in Istanbul, so many museums to visit, sightseeing to enjoy . During those no kids days, we have explored Istanbul endlessly and could never get bored.

However, when you have kids - it's entirely different story. Yes, kids get to appreciate a little art and history every now and then, but not all the time. I have complained to my husband again and again that Istanbul is really not kid-friendly, apart from the playgrounds which are accessible along streets and all public places, Istanbul is definitely no Disneyland.

Things are changing, however. During our last visit last year, the Magic Ice Museum have opened and I didn't waste any time reminding (and reminding and reminding!) my husband to take us there. If it was up to him, we  would be stuck in the playgrounds and museum and on the good day, along the beach. But the explorer in us (three vs. one!) won and off we braved the traffic in European side to Bayrampasa Istanbul to check out the Ice Museum.

Magic Ice istanbul is world’s first ice museum in a warm climate located in Forum Shopping Mall. 
The Magic Ice Museum covers 1,400 square meters. Visitors will wear special Eskimo-style clothes and enter the museum through an ice tunnel. The museum’s interior temperature will be kept at minus 5 degrees Celsius in both winter and summer. 
Some 70 tons of ice were brought from the River Torne in Sweden’s Jukkasjarvi region to make the museum’s ice statues, while its walls and tunnels were made with 100 tons of ice provided by Istanbul. The museum was conceived by the designers and sculptors of the Ice Hotel in Sweden. 
The first section of the museum explains the Vikings’ 880 visit to Istanbul to visitors, who are provided with information through writings on sheets of ice. The information states that the first Vikings, who came to Istanbul over the Black Sea, used the name “Miklagard,” which means “protected lands,” for the city. A Runic writing, which belonged to a Viking soldier named Halvdan, has been found on the walls of the Hagia Sophia Museum in Istanbul. 
The museum also holds an eight-meter boat and a house made of ice, as well as a map of the first Vikings’ travels. 
The two other sections of the museum include information about Scandinavian nature and an ice vitamin bar, where visitors are offered fruit juice in ice glasses.
The “Magic Ice” museum is located inside the Forum Istanbul shopping mall in Bayrampasa district near the Bus Station (Otogar), next to the Turquazoo Aquarium.

And, of course, we are better in photos, so here goes..
the kids shot at being and Eskim

mommy and daddy's turn!

kids again at a different set up

cameras are not allowed inside the museum but we managed to steal some shots albeit too dark.
this one is taken in the house room. 

kids exploring the ice statues!

is it me or my husband look so hot in these winter suit. harrr

magic ice!

h's not happy because Kerim broke one of the souvenir and we paid a whopping 20USD! uugghh

Did we like the experience? It is something new for us. But it's definitely not worth the price ticket of 25TL each. Expensive. Would we come back again? Maybe not. It's not that much adventure for kids.

But hey, it was something new and trying something new is always worth the money and time. So, we would be recommending this to families in kids exploring Istanbul. Besides, the Forum Istanbul shopping mall  is very accessible to tourists as it is very close to the airport. 

Enjoy, stay cool and don't freeze - you'll bound to in this museum!

Keep exploring!


  1. Cheri and I visited Istanbul last September and did not have time to see the Magic Ice Museum.

    Watched the Whirling Dervishes and rode the hot air balloon in Capadoccia.
    Bought some ceramics but not the carpets.

    1. i saw the photos and it looked really lovely in Capadoccia. Hope we could visit there soon as well.
      Shame about the carpets though - but it would really heavy.

      I suppose the Magic Ice Museum wouldn't be as interesting as Capadoccia. ;)

  2. wow thats sounds interesting sistah! thanks for sharing! Hope we can visit there someday! good day!

    1. do visit someday. let's set up the date. ;)


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