Daily Escape

Hagia Sophia    

Photography by Gavin Hellier / Robert Harding Picture Library / Aurora Photos

Hagia Sophia

Istanbul, Turkey

At night, this marvelous mash-up of Byzantine and Islamic architecture stands at its mysterious best; it glows like the thousands of flickering candles which once illuminated the cavernous spaces and intricate Arabic tiles inside. Built in the year 537, the grand Hagia Sophia, called the Aya Sofya in Turkish, has seen the fall of Constantinople and the rise of Istanbul; it is now a museum and symbol of Istanbul’s unique identity as a fusion of Europe and Asia, Islam and Christianity.

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