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Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya)

Sultanahmet | Eminonu District, Istanbul, Turkey (Sultanahmet - Old City)
0212 522 1750
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As featured in 3 days in Istanbul
Ranked #7 of 641 attractions in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Type: Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites, History Museums, Historic Sites
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This architectural marvel displays 30 million gold tiles throughout its interior, and a wide, flat dome which was a bold engineering feat at the time... more » Owner description: This architectural marvel displays 30 million gold tiles throughout its interior, and a wide, flat dome which was a bold engineering feat at the time it was constructed in the 6th century. « less
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English first
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2014 NEW

If you are very much interested in History this is a must visit for you.. The main attraction here is the central hall with lights!!! Very pleasing to your eyes.. Audio clips are also available to guide you about the place.

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Abu Dhabi
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

The sheer scale of Hagia Sophia is astonishing. The current restoration work does not detract from the grandeur of the building. Not to be missed.

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Bethesda, Maryland
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
4 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

The history behind this place was very interesting. Well worth the visit. they are slowly repairing some areas inside but that didn't detract from the overall view.

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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
171 reviews 171 reviews
27 attraction reviews
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW via mobile

Lots has been written and this is one of those must-see sites. However, I suggest you avoid the audio guide. The commentary is brief and very dry and doesn't include the kind of interesting snippets that good guides (human or recorded) throw in and which bring the place to life. We gave up on this pretty quickly, also because it's... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Singapore
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
12 attraction reviews
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

The Hagia Sophia simply fascinates me: within its walls, there are (1) paintings of Christian angels and the Virgin and the Child and (2) roundels with Islamic script bearing divine names in Islam. Despite the contrasting themes, the respective Christian and Islamic traditional decorations do not clash aesthetically; instead, they seem to complement each other. Indeed, the symbolism of peaceful... More

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london
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
16 attraction reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

An outstandingly beautiful building inside. Not to be missed - look out on the upper level for the ceiling niches poorly lit with beautiful mosaics inside. Also for the fake staircases painted inside some of the arches when you are looking towards the Madonna ceiling mosaic. Currently there is a temporary exhibition of calligraphy art which we found very interesting.... More

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istanbul
Top Contributor
693 reviews 693 reviews
192 attraction reviews
2,566 helpful votes 2,566 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

This magnificent historical church&mosque is one of the best architects in İstanbul.It is always included in the program of daily tours to Sultanahmet district for tourists.Strongly recommended to visit it.

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DC Area
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2014 NEW

My wife and I had studied this in art history class, but I never quite understood why it was such a big deal. Then I went, was blown away, and realized that no one had built anything nearly so impressive for a millennium afterwards. A MILLENNIUM! One of my favorite places.

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Byron Bay, Australia
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2014 NEW

I couldn't have been prepared for the size and beauty of this magnificent building church. I was particularly impressed with how the icons were preserved beneath the plaster...

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philadelphia
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
25 attraction reviews
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2014 NEW

I wish we had watched the video first. Very helpful. This is a gorgeous place. .Be sure to put your finger in the hole to see if your wish comes true.

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