Istanbul, Turkey

Hagia Sophia Guided Tour by cultrex

Hagia Sophia Guided Tour by cultrex

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25 tour stops


Brief History of the Byzantine Empire

A brief history of the Byzantine Empire and its role in the age of Emperor Justinian

6 min

Why was Hagia Sophia built?

The history of Hagia Sophia and the events surrounding its construction

7 min

The Entrance and the Earlier Basilica

The flying buttresses and archeological remains

2 min

The Outer Narthex

The outer narthex and its artifacts

57 s

Inner Narthex and the Imperial Gate

The function of the inner narthex, Imperial gate and description of the mosaics

6 min

The dome and the structural system

Description of the dome and the structural system

6 min

The Porphyry Columns

The porphyry columns and their significance

5 min

Marble decoration of the column heads

The marble decoration of the capitals and arches

3 min


The marble inlay disc known as the Omphalion

2 min

Mary's Hand

Later mythical accounts and sites of popular veneration inside Hagia Sophia

3 min

The Apse

The Byzantine apse and the Seraph mosaics in the pendentives

6 min

The Ottoman additions

Ottoman additions made to Hagia Sophia after its conversion into a mosque

4 min

3D model: Major changes to exterior

3D model showing major changes to Hagia Sophia’s exterior

3 min

The Sweating Column

The Sweating Column and mythical accounts about its healing powers

3 min

Loge of the Empress

The 'Loge of the Empress' in the West Gallery

2 min

The Marble Door

The marble screen in the South Gallery and its function

1 min

Mosaics of the Bishops

Mosaics of three important bishops of the Christian church

3 min

Constantine and Empress Zoe Mosaic

Description and style of the Mosaic of Emperor Constantine IX and Empress Zoe

6 min

Emperor Comnenos and Empress Irene Mosaic

Description and style of the Mosaic of Emperor John II Comnenos and Empress Irene

7 min

The Tomb of Enrico Dandolo

Remains of the sarcophagus of Enrico Dandolo

2 min

Deesis Mosaic and Byzantine Renaissance

The Deesis mosaic and the Byzantine Renaissance

5 min

Mosaic Panel of Emperor Alexander

Description of the mosaic of Emperor Alexander

1 min

The Mosaic of Archangel Gabriel

The mosaic of Archangel Gabriel from the Apse

1 min

Vestibule of the Warriors

The Vestibule of the Warriors and its function

3 min

Outside Hagia Sophia

Sultans’ tombs and buildings on the south side of Hagia Sophia

2 min


An accurate and entertaining guided tour of Istanbul’s magnificent Hagia Sophia.

Content Features:
● Covers Hagia Sophia’s 1500 years of history focusing on art, history, and architecture, during both Byzantine and Ottoman eras

● Provides step-by-step guidance to 25 key artefacts, explains why Hagia Sophia is one of the most important buildings in the world

● A special focus on Hagia Sophia’s mosaics, which are considered to be among the greatest achievements of European art

● Historically accurate content by renowned experts

Visual Features:
● Amazing, exclusive pictures of Hagia Sophia’s architecture, key features and mosaics

● Professional narration by native speaker voice-over artists, specially edited for excellent audio quality

● Exclusive 3D model presenting major changes to Hagia Sophia's exterior since its foundation in the 6th century

● Specially designed 3D maps

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