20 minutes walking distance
Süleymaniye Mosque is the second largest imperial mosque complex in the city, built during the reign of Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent.
Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent, who ruled the empire for 46 years was one of the most important Ottoman sultans who ruled in the 16th century.
This period known as the Classical Period is the ‘ golden age’ of the Ottoman empire. The mosque was built by the famous Ottoman architect Sinan, between 1550-1557. It is considered to be one of the masterpieces of Ottoman architect Sinan.
During the Ottoman era, the imperial mosques were built as “külliye“, mosque complex, and functioned as a foundation for the district, to serve both religious and cultural needs of the people.
While the 4 minarets symbolized that Süleyman was the 4th sultan following the conquest of Constantinople, 10 balconies of the minarets symbolized that he was the 10th sultan who ruled since the foundation of the state in 1299.
Mosque complex of Süleymaniye includes a hospital, primary school, hamam (Turkish bath), a caravanserai (lodge for traveling tradesmen), four medreses (Kur’an school), medical college, public kitchen (to serve food for the poor) and mausoleums of the sultan, his wife Roxelane (Hürrem Sultan) and the rest of his family.
Mausoleums can still be visited and the kitchen for the poor has turned into a traditional restaurant.
If you would like to learn more about the 16th century, Suleyman the Magnificient and Hurrem Sultan, we can recommend you one fun way to do so. Click here to watch the trailer of a very popular Turkish soap opera about the 16th century of the Ottomans.
During the visit, shoes will be taken off. It is recommended to have a pair of socks for hygienic concerns.