In Istanbul you will get to see numerous mosques. They are the trademark of the silhouette of the city at dusk and dawn. For me the grandest and most beautiful of these structures is the Süleymaniye Mosque with its complexes. The mosque which was completed, after seven years hard work, for Süleyman The Magnificent in the year 1557 by his Chief Architect, and my hero the great Sinan (Mimar Sinan). This magnificent structure used as an edifice stands on the crest of the ridge above the Golden Horn to the west of the Istanbul end of the Galata Bridge.
The structure is so unique and rare that it dominates the skyline of the city. It’s obviously one of the most important symbols of the Golden age of the Ottoman Empire. Some also compare it with Haghia Sophia (Aya Sofya) which symbolizes the triumph in the days of Justinian.
This superb mosque complex dominates the third hill of İstanbul. It is said that Suleyman The Magnificent has spent 2.5 million gold on its construction. This is absolutely an architectural divinity where you can live the stones poured into poetry. Süleymaniye is absolutely Mimar Sinan’s best work in Istanbul.
When visiting the mosque, you first cross the grand courtyard, with its columns of porphyry, marble and granite and flanked by a great pylon. The lofty dome and the semi-domes gives a sense of immense grandeur. Observe how it’s amazing that the weight of the dome is supported by the outer walls.