|İZMİR Opened in İzmir on Cabotage Day, Jul. 1, 2007, the Sea Museum has contributed to the education of the public about Turkish marine culture and publicized the navy, with its display of the ships TCG Ege Fırkateyni and TCG Piri Reis Denizaltısı, which were turned into museums after completing active service.
Having the opportunity to get to know maritime practices from real ships, the technical systems of which have been preserved, visitors will also learn about Turkish Marine traditions pursued by the Turkish Navy over many years.
Visitors to the Sea Museum will also learn that the Koran is hung on every ships mast and every order from the shipmaster starts with Bismillah (in the name of Allah).
Among information provided to visitors is the origin of Turkish names for wind, why mariners eat haricot beans every Monday, why TCG is written at the beginning of ship names and why marine clothing has eight buttons.
During visits to the Sea Museum, young visitors will be shown a video presentation about navigation schools.
The most impressive educational aspect for visitors to the museum is to see for themselves the difficulties associated with marine life, as a result of the limited space in which mariners have to live.
700 visitors daily
Following the completion of their active roles, ships at the Sea Museum have been turned into first-class military museum ships by preserving their original spaces, technical systems and equipment, and are then open to public visits, said Hüseyin Kılınç, director of the Sea Museum.
Stating that sea museums were established under Mustafa Kemal Atatürk's principle that making maritime life the main ideal of Turks, Kılınç said: Ships displayed at the sea museums facilitate visitors in learning about maritime history, spheres of duties and living spaces. The navy has taken it on as a mission to advertise and endear people to marine life.
The museum ships have become an attraction in Izmir. Acting like a window to the Turkish Armed Forces that is open to the public, the ships attract 500 to 700 visitors every day. A total of 180,000 people have visited the museum so far.
When asked their opinion, visitors generally tend to define their visit as going beyond their expectations.
Visiting the Sea Museum with his son, Orhan Kılınç said they had the chance to get to know life at sea.
I did not know that life at sea was so difficult. It is also nice to learn the military power we have.
One young visitor, who wanted to be a marine, Berk Yıldırımlar, said the visit to the Sea Museum was really wonderful and he had been impressed.
I have noticed that mariners try to protect us despite very harsh conditions. We should support them the best possible way in return for their struggles.
Visitors to the museum have also included foreigners. Three young students from Mongolia studying in İzmir had the opportunity to learn about the sea at the museum for the first time as they have no chance to see the sea in their own country.