Nuruosmaniye Mosque

Nuruosmaniye Mosque is newer than many of the other mosques in Istanbul, and its ornate Baroque style sets it apart.
Prayer Hall of Nuruosmaniye Mosque Istanbul
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Compared to many of Istanbul’s other mosques, Nuruosmaniye is quite new. It was built between 1748 and 1755. So it’s still not exactly a new build.

While it shares some distinctive design features with other mosques in Istanbul, Nuruosmaniye Mosque was the first and largest mosque to be built in Baroque style. The prayer hall is covered with a single dome large dome—one of the largest domes built in Ottoman mosques—that is illuminated with 32 windows. Throughout the mosque are 174 windows which provide quite a bit of natural light. It’s also distinctive for its polyangular cloister, making it unique in Ottoman architecture. And its interior, while ornate, is a bit more restrained than some of the others.

The mosque complex also has a madrasa (religious school), imaret (soup kitchen), a library, a tomb, and a marble public water fountain. Recent restoration works also discovered another dozen rooms beneath the mosque.

Its construction was ordered and funded by Sultan Mahmud I (reigned from 1730 to 1754), who was also known as the Hunchback. He died before it was completed, but his brother, Sultan Osman III, who succeeded him to the throne, saw the project through during his brief reign. When it opened it was given the name Nur-u Osmanh, meaning ‘divine light of the Ottoman.’ The brothers were both interred nearby in Valide Sultan’s Tomb, next to the New Mosque and Spice Bazaar.

Photos of Nuruosmaniye Mosque

Nuruosmaniye Mosque Courtyard
The courtard of Nuruosmaniye Mosque. Photo © David Coleman /
Mihrab in Nuruosmaniye Mosque Mihrab
The mihrab niche. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Istanbul Skyline
Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Lights
Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Minaret
One of the minarets, from below. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Dome
The dome over the prayer hall. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Grand Bazaar Gate 1 (Nuruosmaniye Kapisi)
Looking out from the courtyard to one of the gates of the Grand Bazaar. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Courtyard
The courtyard. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Dome
The roof of the prayer hall. Photo © David Coleman /
Nuruosmaniye Mosque Grand Bazaar Gate 1 (Nuruosmaniye Kapisi)
Looking out at the bustle of one of the gates of the Grand Bazaar. Photo © David Coleman /

What to Know Before You Go

It stands next to Gate 1 (Nuruosmaniye Kapisi) of the Grand Bazaar.

Where to Next?

Travel Advice for Turkey

You can find the latest U.S. Department of State travel advisories and information for Turkey (such as entry visa requirements and vaccination requirements) here.

The British and Australian governments offer their own country-specific travel information. You can find the British Government's travel advice for Turkey here and the Australian Government's here.

Health & Vaccinations

The CDC makes country-specific recommendations for vaccinations and health for travelers. You can find their latest information for Turkey here.

Guidebooks for Turkey

If you're looking for a guidebook to make the most of your visit, these are some of the most popular ones currently for Turkey. Some are available in both paper and e-book formats.

Fodor's Essential Turkey (Full-color Travel Guide)
  • Fodor's Travel Guides (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
Rick Steves Istanbul: With Ephesus & Cappadocia
  • Aran, Lale Surmen (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

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These are some good places to shop for travel insurance for your next trip to Turkey :

Hopefully, you won't need it, but if something goes wrong, you'll sure be glad you have it!

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