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“Quite roman and engineered beautifully”
Review of Basilica Cistern

Basilica Cistern
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$50.00*
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Imperial Istanbul Half-Day Tour: Hagia Sophia, Basillica Cistern and Grand...
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$38.75*
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Private Half-day Tour: Imperial Istanbul - Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern and...
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$113.74*
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Dan Brown 'Inferno' Tour of Istanbul
Ranked #6 of 1,105 things to do in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: 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.
Reviewed October 30, 2012

Descending into the Cistern is like descending into another world and another time. Beautifully eerie, the history is everywhere. The medusa is a highlight.

Thank Suziequeue60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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11,276 - 11,280 of 25,712 reviews

Reviewed October 30, 2012

The sheer scale and age of this place is no mean feat of engineering considering it was built in the 6th century. It is underground and is prone to be a little damp under foot which is to be expected.

Thank nickiBrockhill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 30, 2012

Absolutely fascinating place, and the fish are a bonus. Beware of the "helpful" young men who wait for you at the other end to take you to their shop.

Thank Suziequeue60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 30, 2012

The Basilica Cistern is well worth a visit. It is home to 200+ columns, water, fish and two heads of Medusa. It takes about an hour to do, but I would not have missed it. Get the audio guide!

Thank Siobhan C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 30, 2012

this whole underground palace is amazing - what a feat of engineering and imagination. The cistern is very atmospheric and the columns and lights are striking

Thank easterntravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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