Gli the Hagia Sophia Cat

Hagia Sophia… It is one of the most famous architectural structures in the world which has been standing for 15 centuries and is the spirit of Istanbul. It was once a church, then a mosque, then a museum and back to a mosque again. Hagia Sophia welcomes tourists from all around the world every day and impresses them. It will definitely continue to impress for many more for centuries. But there is another thing that tourists admire except Hagia Sophia’s glory. It is a cat. His name is Gli. He lives peacefully in Hagia Sophia. Gli the Hagia Sophia cat spends all his time in Hagia Sophia just like a guard but unfortunately a bit sleepy one .

Gli ,who is also known as Hagia Sophia Cat, is among the most popular, most photographed cats in the world. Because he was born in Hagia Sophia, one of the most visited places in the world, and has been living here for 16 years.

During Obama’s first visit to Istanbul, Gli the Hagia Sophia Cat became famous when he met the President of the USA, Barack Obama and Prime Minister Erdoğan, and took part in the same photograph.

Squint cat Gli, born growth Hagia Sophia. Gli was born in 2004 under the guard’s hut at the exit door of the museum. Her mother and even her grandmother were born and lived here. He is one of the 6 cats of the museum, the most senior.

The biggest weakness of Gli, who is called as Empress by the staff of the Ayasoya Museum, is the cameras. Gli, who never went out of the museum, was taken to the museum inventory by Professor Doctor Haluk Dursun.

Gli, who is friendly against domestic and foreign visitors of Hagia Sophia, poses for cameras all day long. Gli, who is seen by approximately by 3.5 million visitors a year, holds the title of “the most photographed cat in the world”.

Authorities promised to keep Gli in Hagia Sophia following Turkish High Court’s decision of turning Hagia Sophia Museum into a mosque again.

Update About Gli the Hagia Sophia Cat

Gli, the symbol cat of Hagia Sophia, will be kept in a separate room due to health problems caused by her advanced age. Gli is 81 years old compared to human age.

The last photo of Gli the Hagia Sophia cat

Gli Passed Away

Unfortunately Gli the Hagia Sophia cat passed away today. Gli had a happy life and brought joy to many lives. Maybe she was one of the most famous cats in the world if not in Turkey. Gli passed away due to old age. I hope she is in a place where she will be more loved than Turkey if it is possible.

Gli Was Buried Today

A group of Istanbul tour guides who had been taking care of Gli, the Hagia Sophia cat, took her back to Hagia Sophia today. Gli was buried in the garden of Hagia Sophia next to her daughter ”Kızım” who passed away last year. She will be remembered for many years in the great memories of people and in the sweet photos she starred.

Tour Guide to Hagia Sophia

Please remind yourself to get some treats before touring Hagia Sophia. Maybe we can feed Gli or one of her friends together. Contact me to learn more on Gli and Hagia Sophia. See you soon, Hasan Gülday.

Here is Gli’s official Instagram profile

Gli the Hagia Sophia Cat Posing for Tourists
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Hasan Gülday

Hasan Gülday. Professional licensed tour guide working in Turkey.

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