Our day 22 itinerary are attractions around our hotel, Star Holiday Hotel which is within short walking distances. From Sultanahmet (Blue) mosque, we headed to Hagia Sophia. We do not know why, but even on this third visit to Istanbul, we have no inclination to go inside. Not that the ticket queue is terribly long, we could easily be the first due to the close proximity of our hotel but the urge isn’t there. The difference this time, there is a tulip carpet in-front of it reputed to be the world’s largest. So it will just be pictures of the exterior.
Walking route from Blue mosque to Hagia Sophia. It is actually just across Sultan Ahmet park.
Queues like this is common getting into Hagia Sophia. Credit : reiendaa.blogspot.com
From across Sultanahmet park.
Another angle of Hagia Sophia.
World’s largest ‘Tulip Carpet’ in-front of Hagia Sophia.
This part of the post concentrate on pictures of the interior of the mosque. Although the building of the Blue mosque is big, I must say that the actual prayer hall isn’t that large. There are other mosque we’ve visited, the prayer hall is much larger meaning the number of worshipers it can accommodate is more.
The prayer hall with the low-level lighting. The wooden barrier in the background is the limit non-Muslims and females can enter. Female prayer area is at the back of the barrier.
The beautifully decorated walls and ceiling.
Worshipers waiting for the call of prayer. Stained glass are abundant too.
The ‘mimbar’ or rostrum where sermons are delivered.
From Arasta Bazaar we walked to Sultanahmet (Blue) mosque, the iconic and historic mosque in Istanbul. The mosque is popularly known as the Blue Mosque for the blue tiles adorning the walls of its interior. But you would be disappointed if you’re looking for lots of blue inside because they are mostly in the inaccessible upper galleries.
For the fact that it is a working mosque, non-Muslims should plan your visit ahead. It’s closed to non-worshipers 45 minutes before the call to prayer (azan) and 30 minutes afterwards, and all morning on Fridays. For further information to assist in your planning, visit this sitewww.bluemosque.co
Walking map from Arasta Bazaar to Sultanahmet (Blue) mosque.
Sultanahmet (Blue) mosque from breakfast terrace of Star Holiday Hotel.
View of Blue mosque from Sultanahmet Park.
Exterior view of Blue mosque from outside its compound.
Benches for you to rest and admire the Blue mosque at the back, or to your front the Sultanahmet Park and Hagia Sophia.
Exterior view of Blue mosque within its compound.
Tulips within the mosque compound.
Solid brass pipes outside the mosque for worshipers to do ablution before prayers. During winter months, the pipe water is cold.
Interior courtyard before entering the mosque and prayer hall.
Night view of the Blue mosque from Sultanahmet Park.
Night view from its exterior.
Night view from Sultan Ahmet square before the Hippodrome.