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Tourist Destinations Near Hagia Sophia

Updated on June 23, 2012
Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey
Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey | Source

Hagia Sophia is one of the Seven Wonders of the Medieval World. Previously a place of worship by both Christians and Muslims, it was made into a museum in 1935. It is located in Istanbul, Turkey and was built in 537 A.D.

Hagia Sophia is a very fine example of Byzantine architecture. It has a big dome at the center and its walls are adorned with Mosaics of Jesus, Virgin Mary, the saints, and emperors and empresses. Hagia Sophia also houses various marble masterpieces.

Hagia Sophia is only one of the beautiful places that you can find in Istanbul. In addition to the different museums, the city is also teeming with restaurants to satisfy your hunger for Turkish Cuisines. To make your stay in Istanbul more worthwhile, I’ve made a list of museums and restaurants near Hagia Sophia that you may also want to visit.


The museums near Hagia Sophia offer tourists a wonderful experience of the Byzantine Empire.

Basilica Cistern
Basilica Cistern | Source

1. Basilica Cistern or Yerebatan Sarnıcı

  • Features romantically lit pathways with soft music playing in the background as you explore this cistern that used to hold water for the Byzantine Palace

Istanbul Archaeology Museums
Istanbul Archaeology Museums | Source

2. Istanbul Archaeology Museums or İstanbul Arkeoloji Müzeleri

  • Three museums that feature over a million artifacts with interesting stories told by warm staffs

Topkapı Palace
Topkapı Palace | Source

3. Topkapı Palace or Topkapı Sarayı

  • A 700,000 square meter palace with four courtyards and a garden that have stunning works of art

4. Pera Museum or Pera Müzesi

  • A private art museum that showcases various orientalist paintings, tiles and ceramics, and weights and measures

Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora
Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora | Source

5. Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora or Kariye Müzesi

  • A former Byzantine Church turned museum that has exquisite mosaics and frescoes


Savor the distinct taste of Turkish Cuisines with different offerings from the restaurants below. You may find yourself indulging in piyaz, a Turkish vegetable salad, or chewing on the goodness of baklava, a sweet pastry.

1. Tarihi Sultanahmet Köftecisi

  • A restaurant best known for its köfte or grilled meatball

2. House of Medusa

  • A Turkish Restaurant that almost has everything from cold appetizers to sweet desserts

3. Amedros Cafe & Restaurant

  • A restaurant with welcoming staffs that serves Turkish and Ottoman Dishes as well as International Cuisines

4. Rami Restaurant

  • A fine restaurant with a magnificent view of Hagia Sophia especially at night

5. 5 Kat Restaurant Cafe Bar

  • The first rooftop café and bar in Istanbul that offers a splendid view of the city


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