Kalenderhane Mosque is formerly an Eastern Orthodox Church, converted into a mosque after conquest of Istanbul. It is not exactly known when it was constructed or to whom it was dedicated. It is one of few examples of domed Greek Cross plan architecture surviving today.
Kalenderhane Mosque is located in Vefa neighborhood in Historic Peninsula, within walking distance of both the Valens Aqueduct and Suleymaniye Mosque. You can easily reach the mosque by metro, simply take M2 metro and get off at Vezneciler station.
According to studies, the current building was constructed in 12th century. During field studies conducted by Istanbul Technical University and Harvard University between 1966 and 1975 , it is found that there were three other buildings on the ancient site; a larger church from 7th century, a roman bath from 5th century, and a basilica dating back to 6th century. Also it is thought that site was surrounded by monastery buildings, which weren’t able to survive today.
After the Ottomans captured Istanbul, the church converted into a dervish convert and was assigned to Kalenderi Sect of the dervishes . Name of the mosque, Kalenderhane, means “house of kalenderi” in Turkish. In the 18th century, the building was converted into mosque.
Kalenderhane Mosque is surrounded by buildings, and you need to step inside to see its hidden beauties. The inner walls decorated by colorful marbles and engraved ornamentation.