Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia, Turkish Ayasofya, means “Holy Wisdom” in Greek, with its historical architectural miracle, is one of the outstanding monuments in the world and the most visited attraction in Istanbul and Turkey. On annual average, around 2-3,5 million tourists visit Hagia Sophia.

As a 916-year Byzantine church, a 482-year Ottoman mosque and a museum from 1935 to date, Hagia Sophia is in the UNESCO’s world heritage site list since 1985. While its characteristic reflecting the Christian and Islamic influences, it has become a unique architectural masterpiece of Eastern and Western art. Its formidable dimensions and giant main dome made Hagia Sophia world’s biggest cathedral almost a thousand years and a model for some other Ottoman mosques.Exterior of Hagia Sophia

Having amazing past, engineering secrets, a great dome, mysterious mosaics, decorative marble columns, calligraphic panes, tiles, minarets, astonishing designs and more, Hagia Sophia is a must see historical monument in Istanbul.

Generally, the Hagia Sophia museum is closed on Mondays, however it is open every day to visit from 01/04/2017 to 31/10/2017. (not available on the first days of Ramadan – Eid ul-Fitr and Sacrifice – Eid al-Adha Festivals for half time)

Visiting hours for Hagia Sophia is;

– winter period, 25 October – 15 April, from 09:00 am to 5:00 pm (last entry at 4:00 pm)

– summer period, 15 April – 25 October, from 09:00 am to 7:00 pm (last entry 6:00 pm).
Interior of Hagia Sophia

As of 2017, entrance fee is 40 TL, it is free for foreign children 12 years or younger. Tickets are available at the door or you can get a Museum Pass Istanbul Card costs 85 TL, valid for 5 days-120 hours starts with your first museum visit and enable you to see Istanbul’s other eleven historical and cultural places without paying and waiting in a queue.