Opulent domes and balconied minarets soar upwards at the Blue Mosque, one of Istanbuls most striking landmarks.
Opulent domes and balconied minarets soar upwards at the Blue Mosque, one of Istanbul’s most striking landmarks. Built during the reign of Sultan Ahmet I (1603-1617), it is Islam's answer to Hagia Sophia, which it faces across a well-tended square. To this day, the Blue Mosque remains the symbol and centre of religious events in the city and is Istanbul's only mosque with six minarets, as opposed to the four of an imperial Ottoman mosque or two of a traditional neighbourhood mosque. The name of the mosque is derived from the wealth of priceless blue Iznik tiles that dominate its interior and decorate the vast central dome designed to lift all eyes heavenward.