About “Beneath the Hagia Sophia” project

Hagia Sophia is one of the most important historical buildings in Turkey. The structure which has witnessed three empires, sometimes underwent changes as a result of events like earthquakes or conquests, and sometimes became the very place where incidents shaping the history took place.Hagia Sophia which is architecturally beyond its era, has earned its visitors’  admiration for centuries, and has contributed a great deal to Istanbul’s “the admired city” image.

The structure was built in a short time like 5 years, which was the pinnacle of wealth and splendor during its era and. It was brought to life by putting the most valuable pieces of the empire together. By doing this they showed how earthly wealth could be sacrificed for divine value.

The magnificent Hagia Sophia has been a subject of thousands of legends, starting from the materials used during its construction. Over time, with additions and changes, it has reached its current state.

While being considered as the most important piece of architecture from the Early Byzantine Period, it has set an example to world-renowned religious buildings such as the Westminster Abbey, and the same structure plan was used in the construction of many other buildings with little changes.All that is told and has been known about the Hagia Sophia are about the visible side of it. In addition to that, the Hagia Sophia has a hidden and an equally important side, which has never been shown to anyone. Only few had the opportunity to learn about the secret places hidden for centuries. These are wells and tunnels that millions wander on, but not seen even by VIP guests.

While those tunnels were only seen by a few very special guests and officials during the Christian era, today they can only be accessed by experts with professional equipment because of cave-ins caused by centuries of earthquakes.  A documentary through those tunnels will surely attract the attention of the world.

There are thousands of legends told about the Hagia Sophia’s wells and tunnels. According to the legends there is a cistern big enough to hold a galleon, and the tunnels reach to Proti (Kınalıada).  The Hagia Sophia, which was regarded as the Vatican of its era, also houses the “Crypto Room” which contains the thousand year old Christian archives.

Many respected sources mention a tradition that everything devoted to the Hagia Sophia should remain there.  This guarantees that there will be surprising finds buried under the structure, because such items were not thrown away and kept beneath the church, even though they were broken or unusable.

Filming the tunnels for the first time that cannot be entered even by the curators and archeologists, verifying the legends or finding out that they were merely rumors, and discoveries of new facts will set of repercussions through the entire world.

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