Banya Bashi Mosque
By Dania @ 2010-09-25 16:47:08
Banya Bashi Mosque (Bulgarian: Баня баши джамия, Banya bashi dzhamiya; Turkish: Banya Başı Camii) is a mosque in Sofia, Bulgaria. Its construction was completed in 1576, during the years the Ottomans had control of the capital. The mosque derives its name from the phrase Banya Bashi, which means many baths. The most outstanding feature of the Mosque is that it was actually built over natural thermal spas. One can even see the steam rising from vents in the ground near the Mosque walls. The Mosque is famous for its large dome and the minaret rising upward to the sky.
Currently the Banya Bashi Mosque is the only functioning mosque in Sofia, a remnant of the Ottoman rule of Bulgaria that lasted nearly five centuries, and is used by the city's Muslim community of 8,614 out of 1,170,842.