Escher in het Paleis: Located in the Hague, Netherlands, Escher in het Paleis, or Escher in the Palace, is a museum devoted to the work of the perspective-warping surrealist artist M. C. Escher. Many of Escher’s woodcuts, lithographs, drawings and paintings are displayed, giving an overview of the artist’s work from his early Italian landscapes to the optical illusions that made him famous. The third floor, in fact, is dedicated to these illusions, including a room that uses forced perspective that makes children seem larger than their parents.
And the name isn’t a misnomer: the museum really is housed in Lange Voorhout Palace, in which four Dutch queens used from the 18th to the 20th century. The museum is also famous for the 15 crystal chandeliers that reference Escher works, as designed by Hans van Bentem. Be on the look out for chandeliers shaped like a shark, a skull and cross bones, and even a globe.
Hagia Sophia: One of Istanbul’s most famous tourist attractions, the Hagia Sophia began life in 537 as a Greek Orthodox cathedral before it was converted into a mosque following Constantinople’s invasion by the Ottoman Turks. In 1935, the Republic of Turkey took advantage of the building’s famous domed ceiling, Byzantine towers, and massive size to create a museum displaying priceless works of both Christian and Muslim art. There’s plenty to see at Hagia Sophia, but be sure to look up once in a while to catch a glimpse of the massive pendant chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.