Most Famous Mosques in Istanbul, Turkey • 360° Aerial Panorama
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Among the many landmarks in Turkey, the three famous mosques of Istanbul that deserve special attention. The most beautiful one — The Blue Mosque — is considered the greatest masterpiece not only of Islamic architecture, but also of the world.
The Blue Mosque was built after a series of Turkish military defeats. Sultan Ahmed I realized that no new mosque had been built in the city for about forty years, so he decided to please Allah and remedy the situation. The construction began in August of 1609 when the sultan was 19 years old.
They cleared out a large area for the construction, taking down several buildings of the Byzantine and the Early Ottoman periods. After that loads and loads of rock and marble were brought in. The name "Blue" was given to the mosque because of the huge (over 20 thousand!) number of white and blue ceramic tiles. An enormous dome 23.5 meters in diameter and 43 meters high was decorated with verses from the Koran and the sayings of the prophet Muhammad. The columns were entwined with decorative lilies, carnations, roses and other ornaments. There are over 50 different designs of tulips alone on the columns of the Blue Mosque in Istanbul! The floors are covered with carpets, and a soft light flows into the mosque through 260 windows.
There is a funny story about minarets of the Blue Mosque. The legend states that Ahmed I ordered to build the usual number of minarets — four. However, the architect made a mistake and built 6 instead. In year 1616, when the construction was finished, people realized that the new mosque had the same number of minarets as the greatest shrine of the Islamic world — Masjid al-Haram, the Grand Mosque in Mecca. It was considered a desecration, but fortunately it had no effect on the design of the Blue Mosque in Istanbul. Instead, one more minaret was added to the Grand Mosque in Mecca, and it again excelled among other such buildings.
Opposite to the Blue Mosque is one of the greatest monuments of Istanbul: Hagia Sophia Museum. The cathedral was originally built by Byzantine Emperor Constantius I in year 324-337 AC. After two centuries of fires and revolts, it was rebuilt again by Emperor Justinian I. The new cathedral was created with such grandeur that it inspired a legend of celestial powers helping the construction. Another legend, however, implied that three annual budgets of the Byzantine Empire were spent on the construction. Well, we see no conflict between the two!
The Hagia Sophia Cathedral in Istanbul had a hard life: it survived an earthquake, a plunder and, finally in year 1453, a conversion by Sultan Mehmed II. At that time, four minarets were added to Hagia Sophia, and after a series of other necessary changes, the cathedral was transformed into Aya Sofia Mosque. Our panorama shows the building in its entire glory and beauty. And if you ever get a chance to go inside, you will see the unique ancient frescos and mosaics, restored after the mosque was turned into a museum in 1935.
And finally, the Suleymaniye Mosque — the biggest mosque in the city. This famous landmark of Istanbul is located in the old part of the city. Architect Sinan built it in 1550-1557 on the order of Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent. Together with its adjacent buildings (educational institutions, bath houses, cemetery and so forth), the mosque forms a complex the size of a city block. The main building alone can fit 5 thousand people!
Although Istanbul, a city with centuries-long history, has preserved countless monuments and historical landmarks, these three mosques are particularly beautiful. See it for yourself in our aerial panoramas.
1 September 2012
"I am going to Rome soon for the Canonisation of Blessed John Paul 11 and Pope John xx111 on April 27. I will say a prayer for my Muslim brothers and sisters in Rome. Sallah alla khum.."
Terry McGinley, United Kingdom
"Magnificent work! Congratulations! Thank you!"
Rodica Tepes, Romania
"I fell in love with Istabul!
This panorama is wonderful! I hope that I will visit this beautiful city one day :)"
Karla V, Croatia
"no comments just wonderfull !!!!!"
khalissa boussouar, Algeria
"turkey - istanbul 360 very good"
AYDIN ÖNBAŞLICA, Turkey
"Este site me faz sentir como se estivesse pessoalmente nos lugares mais lindos do mundo. Excelente trabalho. Ótimo para programar a próxima viagem."
RENATA CASADEI RENATA, Brazil
"veeery beautiful! mashaallah! rabi nchlah ykatabli w nzorha ! amine !"
khadija nourhan, Algeria
marie therese barbier colin, Belgium
"Very nice photography. I would like to visit this beautiful city and the most beautiful mosque in the world. Istanbul is a perfect blend of east and west."
Dzenana Omeragic, Croatia
"Dünya Amin Yüksek sultana Karaçi Pakistan dua etti Kalbim islami büyük bir cami gibi"
aliya sultana, Pakistan
"To my heart is like a BIG MOSQUE in the ISLAMIC has world pray Amen ALIYA SULTANA
aliya sultana, Pakistan
"Incredible views. These vantage points are spectacular and impossible to reach for the majority of us. Having been there in early September 2013 left my wife and I in awe of these structures and the human history of ancient civilizations that preceded us. We are now more interested than ever about learning about the entire region and all the people that lived there Muslims Christians Mongols Ottomans and many more. We want to return and soon.
Luis - Marietta, GA U.S.A."
Luis Berrios, USA
"Turkey is indeed one of the most beautiful countries in the world. Istanbul is the best city to visit for a tourist ! It has all the wonders one would like to see.... These mosques are only few sites of interest.... The Orient and the Occident breath together... The modern runs after the antiques... The Black Sea, the amazing Bosphorous and the Marmara Sea hugs Istanbul like an amazing lover...The Goden Horn kisses her shores and her seven hills are the guardian of her undeniable beauty...."
Sharope Blanco, Israel
"i am not a muslim tho!!!! there are lots of thins facinated me in my life...nd turkish culture is above em all.or best of all i can say...turkish culture found me worlds best culture in my opinion...once in life i wanna visit there....turkey one of the heavenly things i ve even seen . . .nd these mosques,,,watchin em ...takes in in a heaven..beat expirience."
raman kumar, India
"I know this, but by this way, is fenomenal. Istanbul is fabulous. I like it"
Mário Reis, Portugal
"i wish i wake up in mecca for fajr, travel madina for zohar,asr in aqsa,maghrib in turkey and isha in damascus..may lord fulfill this dream of mine.."
ashfaque shaik, India
"Realmente quedamos sorprendidos. Con estas vistas parece que estes hay mismo"
Olga Juan Torralba, Spain
"Estuvimos en febrero de 2013 en Instambul. Estas extraordinarias fotografía nos permiten afianzar nuestros recuerdos y los superan. Gracias"
Jorge Pérez Llana, Argentina
"Muhteşem bir şehir.Görmenizi tavsiye ederm.İt is fascinated,you can not never see a thing like this.You must visite....."
ismail ihtiyaroğlu, Turkey
"masha allah itni badi masjid maine life main nahi dekhi. subhanallah"
mohammad shoaib, Saudi Arabia
"Awesome photograohy.I wish I could visit them.Really spectacular :D"
Mohammed Rafid Al Haider, Bangladesh
Martha Lucia Gomez Rojas, Colombia
"I will visit to this site insallah , and will perform namaz if ALMIGHTY WANTS"
Jillar Rahaman, India
"Je to krásné."
Josef Minařik, Czech Republic
"Very beautiful mosque awsum I wish one day i will see this beautiful blue mosque one day live insahALLAH"
Muhammad Salman, Pakistan
Mdmohin hossin, Saudi Arabia
salman khan, India
"The panorama's are breathtaking! I was fortunate to have visited the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sofia Cathedral and the Topkapi Palace. All three are very different, but absolutely stunning in their beauty, history and architecture. It's a must to see, as is Istanbul and Turkey!"
Frank Misaege, USA
"Istanbul is a fantastic city..."
Osman GALATASARAY, Turkey
""Thanks to you"
ahmad ashtiani, Iran
"C'est magnifique du tres beaul travail et les musiques magnifiques merci"
Dunan Roger, France
"SIGUEN SIENDO LOS MEJORES !!. Score- 10 !. Tienen de Lugares maravillosos de La Tierra ? (en movimiento ??)."
German Porras, Colombia
Hamit KAPLAN, Turkey
"Istambulul este un oras minunat incarcat de istorie . Doresc sa-l mai vizitez!"
cezar alexandrescu, Romania
"great pics, great view! love it!"
shahira afiza, Malaysia
"thats wonderfull work. thanks alot for watching to Istanbul how never seen.."
Ferit DALGAKIRAN, Turkey
ssdx sdad, Hungary
"Das sind wirklich sehr schöne Aufnahmen. Besten Dank."
Paul Hediger, Switzerland
Shakrm truly powerful creator of this beautiful area, and I thank all of the staff
And a review:
Check out the full beauty of Islamic art!"
ramin biabani, Iran
But to refer to a monument maybe the title should talk by itself about its heritage. Hagia Sophia (meaning in Greek "God's Wisdom") was built as a Christian Orthodox Cathedral and was transferred to a mosque centuries later.It is oxymoron (contradictory) to have a Greek-Byzantine name to Mosque. Correct Historic and Academic name: "Hagia Sophia Orthodox patriarchal basilica."
Congratulations again for the site!"
Akrivos Stergiou, Germany
TZVETINA ZOYN, Bulgaria
samir gonbadi, Iran
"very beautiful.There are good people in good views of Turkey."
ehsan motamedi, Iran
"Great work! That is the type of info that are
supposed to be shared around the web. Shame on Google for not
positioning this put up higher! Come on over and visit my website .
Thanks =)Christian Audigier"
Belle Williford, Germany
"Lovely work! thank you"
Alvin Brenneman, USA
"very nice worth seeing"
ratan aghamkar aghamkar, India
"Really it's wonderful and fantastic work and so amazing photography. Can you please send me more i would like forward to my friends who surely like it . Thanks to the project team.
AbdulMajid Mohamed Dernawi/LIBYA"
AbdulMajid Dernawi, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
"what a work of art and dedication.i am sure everyone must have always wanted to take pictures when we are sitting in the plane,and our wish has come true.god bless your whole dedicated team.
mohinder and suman."
mohinder pall bassi, United Kingdom
"You are doing such a great work it's so pleasant and amazing photography. Thank you so much. I wish I could be a part of your team."
Taha Aladawi, Egypt
What a magnificent work, AirPano,
odile santana, Brazil