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Kariye Museum (The Chora Church)

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Address: Kariye Camii Sokak,No:26 Edirnekapi, Istanbul 34087, Turkey
Phone Number: 90212 631 9241
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9:00 am - 4:30 pm
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Thu - Tue 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Description: The Chora Church (Turkish Kariye Müzesi, Camii yahut Kilisesi — variously...
The Chora Church (Turkish Kariye Müzesi, Camii yahut Kilisesi — variously the Chora Museum, Mosque or Church) is considered to be one of the most beautiful examples of a Byzantine church. The church is situated in the western, Erdinekapı district of İstanbul. In the 16th century, the church was converted into a mosque by the Ottomon rulers, and it became a secularised museum in 1948. The interior of the building is covered with fine mosaics and frescoes.
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Most recent review
Beautiful church worth a short visit

Unfortunately, it was raining and freezing when we went here, otherwise we would have stayed longer to study the mosaics. Truly beautiful - I had to run back to look up the... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed March 25, 2015
DamascusCatLady
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Damascus
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Damascus
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2015 NEW

Unfortunately, it was raining and freezing when we went here, otherwise we would have stayed longer to study the mosaics. Truly beautiful - I had to run back to look up the history of the church and the art. Even with the inner church closed for refurbishing, you can still see the majority of the mosaics.

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Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2015 NEW

Give yourself a few hours for this one. It's a bit out of the way, but it's close to the Spice Market, so it can be paired with that for a day trip. It would have been worth it to have a guide, because the history is fascinating, but a good guide book will also do. The main dome was... More 

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Washington DC
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
34 attraction reviews
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2015 NEW

The Chora Church, know for its Christian mosaics, is most easily reached from the Old City by taxi. At our visit, March 2015, the nave was under renovation so a great many mosaics were not visible. We were able to see the mosaics in the two long hallways that lie just within the entry, and some frescos. The church lies... More 

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Atlanta, Georgia
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27 reviews 27 reviews
15 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2015 NEW

It certainly has the most preserved mosaic and frescoes of Byzantine icons. It also is in restoration so access to the nave was closed. Nevertheless, it's worth visiting despite the circuitous route you have to take to get there.

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
9 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2015 NEW via mobile

it is currently undergoing renovation so much of the church is closed to visitors. The mosaics are beautiful, as is the architecture, however its quite a trek and a 15tl fee. However there is not much left from the Byzantine empire and this church is a little gem, just a shame that currently you can't fully explore it. However it... More 

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Hamilton, Canada
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 attraction reviews
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 19, 2015

I have been to Istanbul many times and I waited much too long to see this breathtaking Church...now a Museum. Please move this to the top of your travel list. It is a little out of the way and under construction but the mosaics and frescos are incredible. They are more complete/less damaged than in Agia Sophia or the cave... More 

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Istanbul, Turkey
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5 reviews 5 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2015

For tourists visiting Istanbul for only a few days, it's difficult to squeeze in the Chora Church, but it's really essential. The frescos are some of the most exquisite in the world. Photos don't do it justice. You really are transported upon stepping inside this unbelievable place. Yes, it's under renovation, but don't let that deter you. How this structure... More 

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New York
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2015

Full of beautiful old frescos. A bit of a distance from the main tourist areas but worth the trip. I recommend getting a cab and having them wait for you to finish the tour. The original church at this site was built around 530 years after the death of Christ. The qualities of the Frescos are breathtaking.

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New York City, New York
Top Contributor
281 reviews 281 reviews
67 attraction reviews
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2015

This is a spectacular small church/museum. It is a little out of the way and it is under renovation, but when we visited, only the Nave was closed, and most of the good things are in other parts of the church. The mosaics are absolutely stunning. They are almost overwhelming in their richness.The frescos less so, partially because they are... More 

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Vancouver, Canada
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
14 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2015

We walked from our B&B in the Sultanahmet area to this museum, which took just over an hour to get there. Our route was easy to follow walking along one of the main roads leading to the city walls. As we neared the church there were signs pointing out the correct way. At this time the exterior of the church... More 

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