Sultan Ahmet Mosque
Originating from Sultan Ahmet Mosque, Muezzin’s call to prayer spreads out over the city of Istanbul like a stream of fresh air. Majestically soaring towards the sky and sharpened like pencils the six minarets are framing the massive domes of Sultan Ahmet Mosque, which is also called Blue Mosque.
The mosque’s ground floor is entirely decorated with carpets while its interior is dominated by thick and huge pillars that keep up the roof. A wooden barrier separates the wondering tourists from the praying believers. Impressive big circular lusters are hanging lowly from the ceiling; ending just over your head. Its light paints the mosque’s interior in a dimmed-warm light.
Admission is free, visitors may freely move within the allowed area. Before entering you’re asked to take off your shoes. Plastic bags are handed out to avoid you to lose them. Opposite to Arabian mosques women don’t have to wear a cowl. Visitors wearing too casual clothing, such as strapless or spaghetti strap shirts and shorts, are not permitted to enter the beadhouse though. It’s recommened to care about socks in good condition, Paul Wolfowitz’ faux pas is unforgotten.
Conceived by Sinan and finished by his apprentice Mehmet Aga the building deeply impresses with its giant columns and finely tiled domes. The rear domes are even giving the mosque’s its inofficial name Blue Mosque as here many small blue tiles had been appliqued.