Şile is one of the escape points near Istanbul. Şile Lighthouse is the most important symbol that has served as a lookout for Şile for years. It was built in 1859 by Sultan Abdülaziz, the brother of Abdülmecid, who built lighthouses on the coasts during his 15-year reign, to the French. The purpose of its construction was for the ships coming from the Black Sea to Istanbul during the Crimean War to find their way.
Şile Lighthouse, which complies with international standards, is the largest lighthouse in Turkey. It was built on 60 meter high rocks. The lighthouse, which has a 110 cm thick covered stone tower, is 19 meters high. The black and white colors painted horizontally on it are for the lighthouse to be well visible and easily distinguishable during the daytime.
In the first years of its establishment, Şile Lighthouse used to provide illumination using wick kerosene lamps. Later, the lighthouse was illuminated with LPG lamps and since 1968, it has been illuminated with 1000W electric lamps. The lighthouse, which can be seen up to 30 miles in the open air thanks to its 8 catadioptric panels of 925 mm, which allow the light to reach as far as possible, needs to be set up every 2 hours for the regular operation of the lighthouse. As the weights at the end of the steel wires on the tower descend perpendicular to the bottom, the clock is set in motion. When the weights reach the bottom, the clock stops. In order to get these weights back up again, the officials wind the lighthouse’s optical clock with the crown connected to the relevant mechanism.
Şile Lighthouse, which has preserved its original form until today, is open to visitors as a museum between 10:00 – 16:00 on all days of the week except Mondays during the summer season. In the museum inside the Şile Lighthouse, the lanterns previously used in the museum are exhibited. In addition, lanterns used in boats and antique items that will shed light on the history of shipping are among the other artifacts presented to visitors. It takes maximum 15 minutes to examine the artifacts exhibited in a small area.
Right next to the Şile Lighthouse, there is also a small park called Kavala Park for visitors to take a break and rest. You can take photos of the historical castle and the lighthouse from different angles by walking in Kavala Park, which has a fascinating view on the edge of the cliff.
Where is Sile Lighthouse and how to get there?
There is no road in front of Şile Lighthouse. Therefore, you can park near Şile Lighthouse Street and reach Şile Lighthouse on foot. If you do not have a private car, you can use the bus line 139A from Üsküdar. This line starts from Şemsipaşa and continues until Ağva. It passes through Şile on this journey. If you get off at Karşı Mahalle Çeşme stop in Şile and walk a little, you can reach Şile Lighthouse.