Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya), Istanbul

4.7
#1 of 5,697 in Things to do in Turkey
Marvel at one of the most significant artistic and architectural achievements in Turkey--and the world--at Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya). Commissioned by the Byzantine emperor in 537, the church was converted into a mosque in the 15th century by Mehmet the Conqueror. Finally, Ataturk declared the site a museum in the 20th century. The transformation of this structure is symbolic of the transformation of the region and its people through centuries of changing empires and governments. This stunning architectural feat is most often noted for its well-preserved mosaics, featuring 30 million gold tiles, and its 6th-century dome. It couldn't be easier to arrange your visit to Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya) and many more Istanbul attractions: make an itinerary online using Inspirock's Istanbul tour itinerary planner .
Improve this listing »
Lowest price guaranteed
Create an itinerary including Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya)
map
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors
Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya) Tours
View more tours
Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya) Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
35,249 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • Very strong architecture, really attractive place to visit in Istanbul. It is more exciting than advertises! Also they play a video in English which could be really informative to visit the place.  more »
  • You can't come to Istanbul and miss this. I would highly recommend a guided tour in order to get the most out of it. A must on your list.  more »
  • It is adjacent to the Sultan Ahmet square Cathedral. Also buy the tickets there are tourists anyway, so it's quite difficult. Inside are some repairs, was crossing the scaffolding. Climb up to the second floor and looks in front of the Blue Mosque.
    View original
Google
  • One of the must visits when you come to Istanbul. This museum holds a great history to turkey, and it's told through its beautiful architecture inside. How first it has been a church and then turned into a beautiful mosque by the Muslims. -It has labels to every important aspect in the museum and what it represents. -It's huge but not too tiring, if you want to bring kids. -The tickets are available at the entrance, or they could purchased along a tourist package beforehand. -note: a lot of people think that only the ground floor is available, yet there's a spiral stairs to the second floor in the right corner of the museum just when you go through the entrance. + I found a cat inside :], maybe you can find it too?
  • Hagia Sophia is a beautiful piece of art and It has an amazing structure with amazing interior paintings with gold. There is a long queue always and you must have a head cover or umbrella for sun. Nice place, very much crowded but well managed. People love to spend time here and I found the place very neat and clean. Located in a prime spot in old Istanbul city. Has many tourist attractions in the vicinity like Blue Mosque and Cistern Basilica, nearby distance. Entry charge is 40 Lira. One can visit the upper floors of the museum also. It's a unique experience in whole life to witness this. One can invest in the audio guide which gave short informative summaries. The sheer size, design and colour plus the age of what you are seeing is awesome.
  • Indeed, one of the city's best landmarks. A place full of history and events. As a museum, each square contains a great past; how it has been changed from a church into a mosque by the Muslims. And how people created magnificent buildings without any of our modern technology and lived in there! The ticket costs 40TL per person. Great site for history seekers!
  • An impressive building, now a museum after its origins as a church, then converted to a mosque after the conquest of Istanbul. There is a lot to know and see so rent (Tl 30) an audio-guide or hire an official guide ( name tag IDs). There is a film on the mosque and its history and architecture on the left of the entrance that is worth watching before you walk around. There is an upstairs level which you must visit to see the remains of the amazing Christian mosaics. ( no flash photos). The interior is undergoing extensive, much needed, restoration so a lot of scaffolding obstructs some sections, but does not detract from the interest.
  • What can be said about this phenomenal building of which the likes haven't rarely ever been seen in the world. Wade yourself into history, exploring a building built in the 5th century (yes, really) in only a couple of years. Standing in the sanctum feels like you're at the bottom of a cavern, a hollow mountain. Even for those who are not religious like this reviewer, you cannot help but be overcome with a sense of spirituality and mysticism that his place permeates. If there's one thing you are going to see in Istanbul, it has to be the Hagia Sophia. You cannot have missed the phenomenal mosaics, the incredible marble rivulets, the beautiful architecture and wall paintings. You will never forget this place, it is breathtaking.
Places to stay near Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya)

Plan your trip to Istanbul

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans to Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya) by other users

11 days in Europe BY A USER FROM GREECE December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 23 days in Europe BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE July, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 19 days in Europe BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, slow & easy, popular sights PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Slow & easy 6 days in Turkey BY A USER FROM QATAR December, teens, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, teens, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 1 day in Turkey BY A USER FROM QATAR December, kids, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, kids, culture, outdoors, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 5 days in Istanbul SEE PLAN November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Europe BY A USER FROM BANGLADESH October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 30 days in Europe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Istanbul BY A USER FROM QATAR October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 12 days in Turkey BY A USER FROM MAURITANIA September, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 8 days in Istanbul BY A USER FROM ISRAEL October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 7 days in Turkey BY A USER FROM UNITED ARAB EMIRATES October, teens, kids, popular sights PREFERENCES: October, teens, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium
View more plans