Hagia Sophia

page 2


Hagia Sophia
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How to pronunce

Hagia Sophia = HEY-yah soh-FEE-ah

Optical illusion

Forty windows ring the base of the 16-story-high dome, making it seem to upward-gazing viewers 16 floors below that the dome is levitating.


Photos could never give us a sense of that illusion or of the hugeness of the Hagia Sophia's internal space. We have to see this 1400-year-old wonder in Istanbul, Turkey firsthand.

Physical condition

Parts of the Hagia Sophia building are currently in regrettable condition due to centuries of neglect. A major effort is afoot to save and restore this masterpiece of the ages.

Blue Mosque

Don't miss the Blue Mosque, a neighbor of the Hagia Sophia. Its exterior architecture is elegantly beautiful. It's a working mosque, but non-Muslims can visit it during non-prayer periods.

Location in Turkey

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In Istanbul

Basilica Cistern
Blue Mosque
Dolmabahce Palace
Grand Bazaar
Hagia Sophia
Topkapi Palace

In other Turkey areas

Ephesus Ruins
Mount Ararat
Nemrut Dagi
Pergamon Acropolis
Ruins of Troy

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Turkey Wonders - Top 10 rankings


Turkish Culture and Tourist Office


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