Hagia Sophia Museum/ Church (Aya Sofya)

Istanbul

First it was a church, then a mosque and today it is a museum. Even today it is considered one of the world architectural wonders. Opened in 537, Aya Sofya is famous for its greatness and beauty. Hagia Sophia (Holy Wisdom) is located on Sultanahmet Square across the Blue Mosque, on the very tip of the peninsula splashed by the Marble Sea. 

As a trademark of the city, it fascinates with its extraordinary beauty and historical value. It is a true masterpiece of the Byzantine architecture, and one of the greatest architectural achievements in the former Eastern Roman Empire. There were more than ten thousand workers on its construction that lasted only 5 years (532- 537). It was built at the time of Emperor Justinian in Carinthia. Its pillars are made from the most valuable marble from Marble Sea and South Africa. In one of these pillars there is a cavity in which tourists tend to stick their thumb, turn it for 360 degrees and imagine the wish, which they say is guaranteed to be fulfilled.
Hagia Sophia is available to all visitors regardless of religion. Despite earthquakes, unstable foundations and robberies it remained magnificent building. The time required for entrance and tour is about an hour and entrance price is around 20 lira (9 euros).

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