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Location

  1. Being close to the Topkapı Palace, Sultan Ahmed Mosque was regarded as the Supreme Imperial Mosque in İstanbul. A 19-year-old Sultan, Sultan Ahmed I, started digging ceremoniously in the presence of high officials until he was tired. Thus began the construction in 1609 that continued until it was finished in 1616. He appointed his royal chief architect Sedefkar Mehmed Aga, one of the apprentices of Architect Sinan, to be in charge of the construction. He designed one of the last examples of the classical period’s architectural style. It incorporates Byzantine architecture with that of traditional Islamic. Built by Sultan Ahmed I as a part of a large complex, it is originally called as Sultan Ahmed Mosque. However, visitors fascinated with the beautiful turquoise blue tiles always remember it as the Blue Mosque. The complex consisted of a mosque, tombs, fountains, medreses (schools of theology), a health center, kitchens for the poor, shops, a bath, rental rooms, houses and store houses.
  2. Matt Lauer of MSNBC reports from the Blue Mosque, as part of "where in the world is Matt Lauer."
  3. This pillar gives you an idea of how huge, and high, the Sultan Ahmet mosque actually is.
  4. The pillars in the Sultan Ahmet Mosque are massive.
  5. The minbar is where sermons are given, it has steps leading up to the top as can be seen in the background.
  6. Tourists remove their shoes and put them in bags before entering the Sultan Ahmet Mosque. If you want to visit the mosque, you must also dress modestly, with long pants and long-sleeve shirts at least to the elbows and knees. Skirts are also okay as long as they go below the knees, and ladies tops should not have low neck lines.
  7. This is the place where Muslims ceremonially wash themselves before entering the Sultan Ahmet Mosque for prayers.
  8. Since the Sultan Ahmet Mosque is at the top of the list for any Istanbul tour, the lines can be long. It's better to go later in the day or at lunch time.
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