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World / Asia / Turkey / Most Famous Mosques in Istanbul, Turkey

Most Famous Mosques in Istanbul, Turkey


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.

The Blue Mosque at night

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! 

Hagia Sophia

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!

Suleymaniye Mosque

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.

Photography by Stanislav Sedov and Dmitry Moiseenko

1 September 2012

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Gracias a Viva Vacations pude visitar a Turquía. Fantástica Turquía, un viaje inolvidable, lo mejor que he visitado. De repetir!!!!

Martha Gómez Rodríguez, Colombia

The Most Fantastic City In All The World!!!

William Wilkins, USA

I was longing to visit this great mosque.God blessings that I visited Blue Mosque. A jewel of Istanbul. The whole Istanbul is beautiful.

riaz bukhari, Pakistan

Just come from turkey.dont have word to explain the beauty of it.moreover the happiness of all people n different religion visiting the country make u feel gud.u cn c the happiness of each one enjoying gud times freely.a gud morning,a hi,a bonjour,assalaamualaikum,make u all feel like brothers n sisters.lovely.

Fatemah Peer, Turkey

Espetacular as fotos de Istambul parece que voc#234 est#225 passeando pela cidade .Realmente este lugar #233 magico.

Beth Martins, Brazil

Allhavis great .turkey and other

md miraj, India

this is fucked up shit

harvey agumudie, Antarctica

first is the beautiful spatical in the world. that make to sultan ahmad.i will come to see this mosque. it,s my dream

Abdul Rasheed, India

i have a lot of admiration for turkey especially istanbul.i want to have visit this fresh look.

AHSAN AYAZ, Pakistan

very good.tanks

akbar naghizadeh, Iran

Lind#237ssimo. Maravilhoso. M#250sica bel#237ssima. Todos os dias me surpreendo com as maravilhas produzidas pelo ser humano. Temos tudo para sermos melhores. Somos inteligentes. Produzimos o belo. Parab#233ns Istambul. Parab#233ns, Turquia.

Lilia Cunha, Brazil

الا خوة المشرفون على الموقع نرجو منكم اضافة مدينة صنعاء الى الموقع لا نه مدينه قديمة وتاريخيه

عبد الملك ابو علي, Yemen

well i came to know from lady i am waiting to vist see holy propet beloinging but i am not much rich but i will try in shaallah


first is the beautiful spatical inthe world.that make to sultan ahmad.i will come to seethis mosque . it,s my dream

mohmmad azeem ahmad, India

A beautiful city and beautiful, generous people. I wish everyone could visit here at least once.

Carolyn Steele, Australia

Muy bien explicado, y excelentes fotos. Me han ayudado mucho. Estare en Stanbul en julio 2014.

may garcia-clissent, Turkey



Beautiful place and people too ! the more you see the more you like it.

liaquat Raza, Pakistan

A wonderful concept and magnificent execution.
I found the aerial pano. fabulous, but a bit ethereal and removed from the hustle, bustle of Istanbul. Perhaps some more "grounded" views?

Simon Templar, Australia

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


Este site me faz sentir como se estivesse pessoalmente nos lugares mais lindos do mundo. Excelente trabalho. Ótimo para programar a próxima viagem.


veeery beautiful! mashaallah! rabi nchlah ykatabli w nzorha ! amine !

khadija nourhan, Algeria

super be

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

Realmente hermoso!!!

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

i like

Mdmohin hossin, Saudi Arabia

bahot khoobsurat

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...


"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

Wonderful! Congratulations!

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




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

hello& don't be tired to you.thanks for all of your images. insert photos of iran's beautiful places in your site please

mehdi mohamadi, Iran

dobrý web, krásna panoráma.

Robo G., Slovakia


ernesto ruiz, Colombia

istanbul is one of the beautiful city in the world

masud biyabani, Iran

so nice.....

hoora javan, Iran

AİRPOANO Ekibine Tekrar Tekrar Tesekkur Ediyorum.Gercekten Cok Guzel Bir Calisma Olmus Caani Gonulden Kutluyorum.

Gokhan Kale, Turkey

Es un trabajo extraordinario.....Os animo a seguir con más lugares y monumentos.

Francisco Rojo, Spain

best work,thanks for this site

Ali uoneci, Iran


morteza sharifian, Iran

Good! I want to go there. T^T

lee yohan, Korea

Fabuloso...!!! haceis un trabajo extraordinario.
Felicitaciones y continuad.
La primera semana de Octobre estaré en St.Petersbourgo. Podré apreciar directamente lo que he visto desde los aires.....

José Maria Carnicé, Spain

Foarte frumos !
Ocini harasho !


A wonderful work showing from bird's eye beautiful locations and monuments.

Ioannis Roussis, Greece

its a wonderful place for me.

este viaje ya lo he hecho leyendo a Pamuk su mejor escritor, a mi parecer.

también deberé ver alejandría.
muchas gracias,
my regardes,
wilma derpich gallo

lima-Perú (antigua civilización del mundo andino)

wilma ester derpich gallo, Peru

i was fascinated, never seen a thing like this, playing with mouse and getting such beatiful images. thanks from a housebound old woman

monica manning, Israel

Hello to my friends there!!!
I am glad to meet you here in Istanbul and now more happy to see the result of your studies. I'II go on to watch your projects. well done !!

Akif LEVENT, Turkey

"Thankyou so much !!!!!!Nice pictures and music.! Congratulations! Perfect!"

Hatice Pekel, Turkey


Manuel Ferreira, Portugal

very,very nice

soroush jamali, Iran


reza sohrabi, Iran

Makes one feel as if they are right in the places photographed. Well done..

Ed Nelson, USA

It was very exciting. Thank you

malihe baharloo, Iran

Thank you for the wonderful panorama of Istanbul. It brought back the beautiful memories of the wonderful trip I made to Istanbul, with my dear mother, 2 years back. Thanks again and All The Best for your future endeavours.

Fren Bill, India

thanks for beautifull picture

mahdi kateb, Iran


younes bashiri, Iran

It's very bueaty full pictures,
I like this,

Jitendra Kumar, India

very very good

selakjany yadollah, Iran

The great Greek Orthodox church from that Byzantine period.... Nice work! ;)

John Walker, Poland

thank you for your site.

Mohammad Hasani, Iran


hamed ase, Iran


dr.s.k. bhatia, India

maravilhoso. parabens, obrigado.

antonio francelle diogenes de almeida, Brazil

Estuve varias veces en Estambul y visualizar esto con Airpano en como esta allí. CONGRATULLATIONS!!!

Alfonso Saavedra, Spain

Fabuloso' um verdadeiro espectaculo de fotografia.

fausto barbosa, Portugal

Simplesmente lindo, magnifico.
Minas Gerais

Paulo Rattes, Brazil

So beautiful! ~

jacky cheng, China

I visited these mosques in June 2004; viewing this brought back good memories.

Dan Beto, USA

The view drew me in while the music touched my soul. Very wonderfully done.

Eveline Horelle Dailey, USA

Photography is top class.Music in back ground is very soothing


Really a super beautiful masjid with it's modern architect design...someday I want to attend pray in this masjid inshallah :)

Mostafa Chowdhury, Bangladesh