Hagia Sophia

01.10.16 11:00 AM By Putri

One question that came to mind as soon as I stepped in to the Hagia Sophia mosque : HOW IS IT POSSIBLE THAT THIS SPECTACULAR BUILDING BUILT WHEN ELECTRICITY WASNT EVEN INVENTED ?

I had to round up my pashmina tight around my head and neck, not necessarily to follow the dresscode but to prevent my jaw from dropping because this more than a millenium old building is breathtakingly impressive. Imagine the artsy people that crafted those walls, painted those magnificent ceilings, and decorated those high pillars. Suddenly I felt small and artless. I can’t even build a decent looking Lego house.

Hagia Sophia, or Aya Sofia was originally a church and suffered from multiple destructions along the centuries. It was converted to a mosque in 15th century, and now a museum. It is unquestionably the oldest and grandest building in Istanbul.

The domes are covered with brilliant tile mosaic works, lit up by the sun that comes through the tinted window panes. The pillars are hundreds feet tall and yep, all decorated. I dont think there is a single inch that is not touched with art in this place.

Every single decoration was made with mosaic. Imagine tiling those millions of colorful tiny squares to make a painting. Who ever did it had had amazing attention to details and patience. While I, I can't even finish a full page of my adult coloring book... 

We went to the upper storey and stood there for few minutes in silence trying to absorbed this beautiful manmade view. There are gigantic arabic caligraphies of Islamic names hung around the center of the building. I read (poorly) arabic. I had my fun trying (read : throwing wild guesses) to read those caligraphies and explain to Nico with the most-knowleagable-museum-curator act like. I probably (must have) given him misleading informations but lets not tell him that..

As one of the main touristic landmark, this place is always packed with people, but it is really worth it to visit. One might said you were never been in Istanbul if you haven’t been in Hagia Sophia, and it's true, don't miss this place when you are in Istanbul. It is truly a stunning piece of art. 

PS : This is another place that is better visited with a guide.