The exquisite Selimiye Mosque, one of Edirne’s most notable historical monuments, was constructed between 1569 and 1575 and is one of the best works of the famous architect Mimar Sinan. The mosque is considered Sinan’s most stunning accomplishment.
It is a UNESCO World Heritage site owing to its historical significance and architectural beauty. This mosque complex features a massive dome, four symmetrical minarets, intricately elaborate decorations, colorful glassworks, marble fountains, theological schools, shops, and even a museum.
Edirne’s Kaleiçi (Old Town) neighborhood is a crowded area stretching southwest of the Selimiye Mosque. This historic neighborhood is the heart of the city; The parallel alleyways are lined with wooden and stony candy-colored houses, buildings, and mansions.
This neighborhood is filled with culturally essential structures, including churches, mosques, gardens, and markets. The Grand Jewish Synagogue can be found here as well. There’s even a museum dedicated to the Kırkpınar wrestling competition!
The Edirne Old Mosque (Eski Cami or Eski Ulu Cami) is often overlooked in favor of the Selimiye Mosque. But make no mistake, this mosque is well worth a visit. This is Edirne’s oldest Ottoman Imperial Mosque, built in the 15th century.
Its exterior design might seem less impressive than the Selimiye Mosque. Still, the interior calligraphy designs and the paintings inside the small domes make up for that.
More than 20,000 Sephardic Jews lived in Edirne in the early 20th century. After a fire that destroyed many Jewish synagogues in 1905, this one was built to replace them. It had been closed for several decades until it was finally reopened to the public in 2016, after significant restoration.
There aren’t many Jewish residents in Edirne anymore, but this bright yellow building (which now serves as a museum as well) is a reminder of a history of turmoil.
Two rivers go through Edirne. The Meriç River is the bigger one in the south, while the smaller Tunca River runs through the city’s western parts. Many historic structures and ruins are scattered along the rivers, like the ruins of Eski Sarayi, an old Ottoman palace.
Several old and new bridges across the rivers, like the Meric River Bridge.
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