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World Heritage Site

for World Heritage Travellers

Selimiye Mosque

Selimiye Mosque

The Selimiye Mosque and its social Complex in Edirne is considered the highlight in the career of the most famous Ottoman architect, Sinan. It was built between 1569 and 1575.

Surrounded by four tall minarets, the Mosque has a grand dome atop it. The adjoining Social Complex includes two madrasas, a bazaar, a school, a clock house, a courtyard and a library.

Map of Selimiye Mosque


  • Cultural

Community Reviews

Clyde Malta 05.01.14

Selimiye Mosque by Clyde

I visited Edirne in January 2014. It is quite off the beaten track due to its geographic position not far from the borders of Bulgaria and Greece. It is around 238km from Istanbul but well worth a visit. The main highlight of this WHS is the squarish Selimiye Mosque built by Mimar Sinan around 1575. The 4 minarets that adorn this mosque are indeed the tallest in the Muslim world. It is built in the centre of a kulliye, ie. a complex including a hospital, an Islam teaching centre, a bazaar, gardens, a courtyard and also a cemetery.

I enjoyed the fact that the locals are the main inhabitants of this town and tourists are a minority (unlike Istanbul). The best mosque interior in Edirne (if not the Islamic world!) can be seen in the old Eski Mosque, with its red and white archways (like Cordoba's mesquita) and the huge black Islamic calligraphy on the walls. Another mosque worth visiting is the Ottaman Üç Şerefeli Mosque with is candy-like spiral minaret. As an aside, do try the Edirne Kofte! Truly delicious!

John booth New Zealand 09.08.11

Selimiye Mosque by John Booth

Edirne (known as Adrianople until the Ottoman period) is easily accessible by bus from Istanbul and Canakkale.

This fine example of Muslim architecture is regarded as Mimar Koca Sinan's master work, eclipsing that of his Selimiye Mosque in Istanbul. An unusual feature is the statue of Sinan that stands within the gardens of the mosque.

Besides being a Muslim Holy Place, the mosque in Edirne is also regarded as a Baha'i Holy Place. Between 1843 and 1848, Baha'u'llah, founder of the Baha'i faith was exiled to Adrianople by the Ottomans, and during that period he and his family worshipped regularly at the Selimiye Mosque.

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Site Info

Full name: Selimiye Mosque and its social Complex

Unesco ID: 1366

Inscribed: 2011

Type: Cultural

Criteria: 1   4  

Link: By Name By ID

Site History

  • 2011 - Inscribed 


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