Hagia Sophia (Ayasofya Camii)
Hagia Sophia is a notable religious place of interest in Istanbul. It was constructed during the 4th century and at the beginning it was used as an Orthodox patriarchal church and later it was converted into a mosque. In the Middle Ages the Hagia Sophia played a significant role in the religious development of the former empire.
Hagia Sophia will definitely impress you with its large dome that is a great example of the Byzantine architecture. It is also considered to be among the places in the world that "have changed the history of architecture". What's more, the notable Hagia Sophia in Istanbul was the biggest cathedral in the world until the Seville Cathedral was finished during the 16th century.
Going to the Hagia Sophia you will enjoy one of the best collections of holy relics and a great silver iconostas. During the Ottoman reign some Islamic relics were added to the collection such as the mihrab, the minbar and four minarets. Until 1931 the Hagia Sophia was used as a mosque and soon after it was closed for visitors. In 1935 it was opened again but from that moment on it houses a museum.
The Hagia Sophia is opened daily from 9am - 4:30pm (except on Mondays)
The entrance fee is 20 TL (Around 8 Euro)