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Basilica Cistern

Alemdar Mahallesi, Yerebatan Caddesi, No:1/3, Istanbul 34410, Turkey
+90 212 512 15 70
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The Basilica Cistern is the largest of several hundred ancient cisterns beneath the city that provided a water filtration system for the buildings nearby. This underground chamber measures approximately 138 meters (453 ft) by 64.6 meters (212 ft) and is capable of holding 80,000 cubic meters (2,800,000 cu ft) of water. The ceiling is supported by 336 marble columns.
  • Excellent67%
  • Very good25%
  • Average6%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“medusa heads” (1,217 reviews)
“fish swimming” (204 reviews)
Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
Alemdar Mahallesi, Yerebatan Caddesi, No:1/3, Istanbul 34410, Turkey
Sultanahmet
CONTACT
Website
+90 212 512 15 70
Write a ReviewReviews (26,090)
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All reviews
"medusa heads"
in 1,217 reviews
"fish swimming"
in 204 reviews
"underground water"
in 145 reviews
"water supply"
in 139 reviews
"interesting place"
in 191 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 412 reviews
"hagia sophia"
in 557 reviews
"audio guide"
in 319 reviews
"entrance fee"
in 205 reviews
"museum pass"
in 185 reviews
"blue mosque"
in 372 reviews
"old city"
in 138 reviews
"columns"
in 2,058 reviews
"inferno"
in 215 reviews
"carp"
in 185 reviews
"reservoir"
in 177 reviews
"eerie"
in 445 reviews
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1 - 10 of 13,433 reviews

Reviewed yesterday

Basilica Cistern is located only 2 minutes walk from Hagia Sophia.The entry only costs 20 liras. Before you enter you will be scanned by police officers. You will go under the ground with stairs, and when you go down you will see the big oppening...More

Thank LukaRenee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago

A month before I came, this isn't really a part of my list but its just so near to hagia Sophia not to visit so I gave it a shot. For people who wont appreciate the history of it much, this would just be an...More

Thank janeatweet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

I thought this was a pointless visit. You go inside walk a down flight of stairs into this large underground damp and dark hall. If there was more lighting it would’ve been better. So you walk down these dark damp pathways and at the end...More

Thank serene156
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
See more reviews
Reviewed 3 days ago via mobile

In my opinion, Basilica Cistern is one of the places everyone must visit in Istanbul! Amazing breathtaking scenes under ground!!

Thank Yasimot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 days ago

Thinking about how and why it was built to then find out that also a James Bond movie scene was produced there makes the place very special ..... definitely worth a visit !

Thank Ingo S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 days ago via mobile

Interesting place to see once in your lifetime. It was a huge reservoir of water dated from 1000 years ago, with about 300+ columns supporting its height with great arches. Its main attraction is the 2 huge Medusa heads that support 2 columns which it...More

Thank Patricia F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago

A breathtaking emotion is what you get getting down to this wonderful spot of Istanbul. Absolutely to be recommended.

Thank Danyele26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago

I loved this place, so much history here. This place has also been in quite a few films. Highly recommend this place.

Thank mey27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

No you cannot compare this to Hagia Sofia. But if you have 20 minutes to spare it is an interesting experience.

Thank Saturday14th
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

It's a very nice experience, they were working all over the place there was a lot of noises, it's not that big but worth a visit.

Thank Abeedo A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Nearby
Sultanahmet
With so many unmissable attractions within a mere
stroll of each other – and all set around the site of
an ancient Byzantine hippodrome – Sultanahmet is an
overwhelmingly popular tourist destination, and a
prime location for visitors to be wowed on a truly
epic scale. Beyond the wonders of the Blue Mosque, the
Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, and more, this
relatively small area of Istanbul somehow manages to
...More
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Abdulelah S
21 January 2018|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from SALAH M | Reviewed this property |
Hi. Good Day 20 Tl less than 4.30 €
0
Votes
Abdulelah S
21 January 2018|
AnswerShow all 9 answers
Response from Nick M | Reviewed this property |
we paid 20 Tl each
2
Votes
JKomiss
16 September 2017|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from Erica F | Reviewed this property |
Unfortunately, I don't believe there are any concerts in the Cistern, but Hagia Irene near Hagia Sophia seems to have concerts on a regular basis and is just gorgeous!
1
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