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Sultan Ahmed Mosque, Istanbul

4.5
#3 of 3,328 in Things to do in Turkey
Nicknamed for the blue tiles that adorn its interior, Sultan Ahmed Mosque represents an imposing figure in the city's history and skyline. Located in the historic Sultanahmet district and built in the early 17th century, this impressive religious structure has a total of six minarets, one main dome, and eight secondary domes. Originally commissioned to reassert Ottoman power in Istanbul and across the region, this mosque still functions as a site of worship today. However, the site welcomes visitors of all faiths to view its spectacular design, which mixes traditional Islamic architecture with Byzantine elements. Keep in mind you'll need to remove your shoes and women should cover their head and shoulders. Put Sultan Ahmed Mosque on your schedule, and learn what else deserves a visit by using our Istanbul trip app .
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
26,061 reviews
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  • Architectural marvel free to enter but most impressive from outside. Impressive from every angle and Istanbul's must see.  more »
  • The symbol of the city. This huge, noisy and fascinating city. All trips lie through this place. Visit rate.
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  • Really worth the visit, a beautiful, and ornate building and a working Mosque. Be prepared to don some leggings or skirts and a shawl to cover yourself appropriately, but these are free and gladly giv...  more »

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Where to stay in Istanbul

The bustling downtown core of old Istanbul is the popular choice among tourists wanting a short walking distance to the city's biggest attractions. Here you'll find hostel-style accommodations and reasonably priced and traditionally decorated hotels, as well as bed and breakfasts and inns with views overlooking the sea. Though often the most affordable, accommodations in the old city can be very overrun with tourists and street solicitors. If you seek a more relaxed stay, consider lodging near Taksim Square. This new, trendy neighborhood is a short 15-20 minute ride from the old city, but puts you closer to restaurants, shopping, and nightlife. Though the newer area of the city is a bit more upscale, you'll also find moderately priced hotels and some hostels. Look for luxury hotels in the western suburbs close to the airport, overlooking the banks of Bosphorus.
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