Hi everyone, I just wanted to share information regarding the Camlica Mosque in Istanbul. It was by far the highlight of our recent visit to Istanbul. The Camlica Mosque is the gigantic mosque situated on the hill on the Asian side of Istanbul. It is an absolutely stunning mosque with an amazing onsite "Islamic Civilizations" museum and an equally amazing cafe with lots of cheap yummy treats. The panoramic view from the grounds is also breathtaking. The Camlica Mosque opened in 2019 just before Covid hit so it isn't in any of the guidebooks yet, but it surely will be in years to come. No crowds when we visited and the museum is currently free (although I do not know how long). We took a taxi there from our Sultanahmet hotel for the convenience, and it cost us around 120 TL each way (less than $10). (We used the BiTaksi App, Turkey's version of Uber, and it worked like a charm!) You could take the metro/bus but you'll need to add at least 45 minutes of travel time each way. Erdogan spared no expense in building this behemoth beauty of a mosque and it shows. Also, fun fact, the architects were two women. Honestly, do not miss it. Enjoy! Linda
Thank you! I will add this to our list of things to see when we are there in October.
Thank you for sharing this tip-will add to my list of things to do!
I also wanted to mention the Sakarin Mosque, also on the Asian side of Istanbul. This mosque is just a ten minute cab ride from Camlica Camii and is another absolute gem off of the beaten track. When I visited earlier this month, I was the only person inside other than the people praying. Sakarin was the first mosque in Turkey to be designed by a woman and the decorator touches are gorgeous. It is filled with light filtered by gold screens that are patterned to pages of the Koran. The light fixtures feature teardrop shaped crystals that mimic raindrops and there is a drinking fountain for dogs/cats built into the side of the steps where you enter. The mosque is situated next to the cemetery and it is very tranquil and beautiful place.
I'll add to the chorus of thanks for the tip. I'll be in Istanbul in September, and I'm adding those two mosques to my list of things to see.