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The many mosques of Üsküdar

on 09/07/2014

Atik Valide

      Üsküdar, located on the Asian shore of the Bosphorus in Istanbul, is a lively and popular district that will prove particularly appealing to mosque enthusiasts.

Indeed, there are many of them and most deserve to be seen.

Opposite the pier you will find the recently renovated Mihrimah Sultan Mosque. It was built in 1547-48 by the famous ottoman architect Sinan for Mihrimah, daughter of Suleiman the Magnificent and wife of the grand vizier Rüstem Pasha.

Not far from there, near the main square, the Yeni Valide Mosque emerges from the landscape with its two minarets. It was ordered by Sultan Ahmet III in 1708 and dedicated to his mother, whose mausoleum is located within the mosque. Several superb ottoman tombs are also to be found in the magnificent garden.

The Atik Valide Mosque is situated in the heights of Üsküdar and is the most important monument of the area. It was also built by Sinan, in 1583, for the mother of Sultan Murat III and is considered to be one of the architect’s most impressive works. The prayer hall is particularly beautiful and the gardens are most agreeable and serene. The large complex around the mosque includes among other things an old koranic school, which has been converted to a handicraft centre.

If you venture further uphill you will get to the Çinili (tiled) Mosque, built in 1640 for the wife of Sultan Ahmet I. It owes its name to the numerous Iznik tiles used to decorate the prayer hall. It is best to go there outside of prayer times.

Finally, do not forget to visit the magnificent Şakirin Mosque, subject of our previous article.


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