We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Basilica Cistern

Alemdar Mahallesi, Yerebatan Caddesi, No:1/3, Istanbul 34410, Turkey
+90 212 512 1570
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Private Half-day Tour: Imperial Istanbul - Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern and...
More Info
and up
Imperial Istanbul Half-Day Tour: Hagia Sophia, Basillica Cistern and Grand...
More Info
and up
Dan Brown 'Inferno' Tour of Istanbul
Sponsored by:
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Sponsored by:
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%
Travelers talk about
“medusa heads” (1,175 reviews)
“fish swimming” (201 reviews)
Open Now
All hours
Hours Today: 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
Alemdar Mahallesi, Yerebatan Caddesi, No:1/3, Istanbul 34410, Turkey
+90 212 512 1570
Write a Review
Reviews (24,900)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages

1 - 10 of 12,938 reviews

Reviewed yesterday via mobile

I visited more than one time. It is very magical and peaceful . It has large space. In every step you hear the sound of the building. It was very special experience for me. I like yerebatan sarnıç.

Thank tulaykaracaorenli
Reviewed 2 days ago

A sheer waste of money, the entry is cheap but this place is a complete waste of time to see. Avoid.

Thank Mohammed S
Reviewed 2 days ago

Like many things in Istanbul, there was a price to visit this cistern... and with amazing sites such as the Hagia Sofia to explore, I had not even heard of this little gem. By it really is a little gem. When you descend into the...More

Thank Shaneshka
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

While the cistern was dry when we visited due to renovations but still very atmospheric. The kids loved it! Still worth a visit when in the area.

Thank Faisal M
Reviewed 2 days ago

Beautiful ancient place and nice feelings inside this water tank. I recommend all istanbul visitors to watch this place.

Thank samialdoory
Reviewed 3 days ago via mobile

Of all the tourist spots in Istanbul this is the one place I have returned to in the 30 years I have been visiting Istanbul. I was captivated by its sheer beauty, its calmness and "other worldliness" the first time I was lucky. It was...More

Thank Akinlondon
Reviewed 3 days ago

This place is magical, reminds me of Scheherazade and 1001 Arabian Night Stories. There is also a massive Medusa Head to see!

Thank Ghursday
Reviewed 3 days ago

This is incredible. A reservoir the size of 2 football fields to store water underground. The columns are very impressive. Known as Basilica cistern because it was built where a Basilica once existed.

Thank Bindastraveller
Reviewed 4 days ago

We were here when there was no water in the Cistern and it was quite expensive to enter for what you got. This was a bust during our trip to Istanbul.

Thank Coles8
Reviewed 4 days ago

I was truly amazed by what I saw with this historical underground waterway. The age and beauty is hard to explain. If you are in Istanbul you have to go to the Basilica Cistern!!

Thank Charlie A
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
Sponsored by:
Nearby Restaurants
Fuego Restaurant
1,550 reviews
.06 miles away
House of Medusa
1,029 reviews
.04 miles away
Balkan Lokantasi
235 reviews
.02 miles away
Optimist Cafe
15 reviews
.02 miles away
Nearby Attractions
Hippodrome (At Meydani)
569 reviews
.05 miles away
Les Arts Turcs Tours
68 reviews
.03 miles away
Milion Stone
69 reviews
.03 miles away
Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Imra-atu Y
June 4, 2017|
Answer Show all 2 answers
Response from bas t | Reviewed this property |
same as the previous answer about 20 turkish lire
April 14, 2017|
Answer Show all 8 answers
Response from ahjahanshir | Reviewed this property |
No. you cannot. Museum pass is basically for the museums, and basilica cistern is not a museum.
January 28, 2017|
Answer Show all 4 answers
Response from orkenvandrer | Reviewed this property |
It was cash only (Lira only) when we visited in October 2016, both for the entrance fee and at the little cafe downstairs. The photobooth and the souvenir-shop accepted credit-card, both. Enjoy your visit!
Google Translation