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Located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Turkey is a land of wonders, and standing at the heart of its largest city, Istanbul, is the majestic Hagia Sophia. A masterpiece of Byzantine architecture, Hagia Sophia is a testament to the rich history of this region. TourGoodTravel, based in Istanbul, specializes in offering customized travel services all over Turkey, and a visit to Hagia Sophia is a must in any of our itineraries.
History of Hagia Sophia
Hagia Sophia, which means “Holy Wisdom” in Greek, has a history that spans almost 1,500 years. It was originally constructed as a church in AD 537, during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian I. For nearly a millennium, it was the largest cathedral in the world and served as the religious center of the Byzantine Empire. After the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople in 1453, it was converted into a mosque, and its mosaics were covered with plaster. In 1935, it was transformed into a museum, and its mosaics were restored. Most recently, in 2020, it was reconverted into a mosque.
The Hagia Sophia is not only significant for its historical and religious value but also for its architectural feats. Its dome, rising 55.6 meters above the ground, was an engineering marvel of its time and inspired the design of many other buildings, including the famous Blue Mosque, which is located just a short walk away. The interior is adorned with magnificent mosaics, marble pillars, and intricate decorations, showcasing the artistic and architectural achievements of Byzantine and Ottoman craftsmen.
Visiting Hagia Sophia
As a functioning mosque, Hagia Sophia is open to visitors outside of prayer times. Entrance is free, but it is advisable to dress modestly out of respect for its religious function. TourGoodTravel offers guided tours of Hagia Sophia, where our knowledgeable guides will provide insights into its history, architecture, and cultural significance. Our tours can be customized to suit your interests and schedule, ensuring you get the most out of your visit.
Hagia Sophia is a must-see attraction for anyone visiting Istanbul. Its fascinating history, architectural grandeur, and religious significance make it a unique monument that is not to be missed. With TourGoodTravel, you can enjoy a personalized and informative tour of this and other iconic landmarks in Turkey. Contact us today to start planning your unforgettable Turkish adventure.