Though it no longer helps power the city, this old station still generates a fair amount of buzz. Instead of letting the plant fall into disrepair and decay after it was shut down, it was decided to transform its first two engine rooms into a museum dedicated to the very thing the station once produced.
Before it became Turkey’s first industrial archaeology museum, the Silahtarağa Power Station sent electricity surging through the city from 1914 to 1983. Much of the machinery has been cleaned up and restored, so the museum looks like the station did when it was actually in use.
One of the most impressive sights to see is the control room where the electricity was transmitted to different areas in Istanbul. This room and its many control devices and equipment were kept intact, making it easy to imagine it could whirr to life at any moment and once again and send energy coursing through the city.
On the ground floor, people can peruse a number of hands-on exhibits that show how energy works. Called the Energy Play Zone, its 22 exhibits let curious visitors have a bit of fun with generating electricity, crafting magnetic sculptures, and playing around with touching different (harmless) electrical charges.
Visit Turkey with Atlas Obscura Trips
Istanbul: Exploring the Tastes of Two Continents
On this week-long culinary experience in collaboration with Culinary Backstreets, we’ll be studying the city of Istanbul through its kitchens—investigating the disparate influences that form the great mosaic that is modern-day Istanbul cuisine.