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“Certainly a must-see in Istanbul”
Review of Basilica Cistern

Basilica Cistern
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$114.04*
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Dan Brown 'Inferno' Tour of Istanbul
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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...
Ranked #6 of 1,103 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 April 6, 2013

Easy to slot this in between the other sights close by and doesn't take too much time. Many of the columns are beautifully lit, creating dramatic orange patterns reflecting in the water.

Thank John O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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10,477 - 10,481 of 25,585 reviews

Reviewed April 6, 2013

Fantastic athmosphere and light with a good opportunity for long exposures with you SLR camera. Recommend it.

Thank Ulf Wike L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2013 via mobile

we were drawn in by the long line we saw since the first day we arrived and were amazed to find out such an amazing historical sight. We could have missed it. A must see when you are a first time in istanbul.

Thank EllieSHA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2013

Totally blown away with this unexpected gem. Of all the major sites we saw, this one was the best. The expanse of the cistern is unbelievable and the knowledge needed to construct will just amaze you. It's a must see. Skip the bazaars and do this. You won't regret.

Thank chatdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2013

Unless you go down - can't really visualise it...!! First impression is of definite suprise and then reality sink in. Get it's all details from the net..precise placings of pillars..load bearing capacity..Medusa story..all worth spending some time for sure.
Would also welcome additional info...is Taj also standing on similar type of structure below the surface ? Have heard that there are specailly treated wooden pillars below the Taj, immersed in water for centuries.
And don't fall for dress one..there is one Turk standing outside near hagia Sofia on the way to Topkapi Palace..who charges TL 10/- and provides same dresses..take as many photos as you want..!!! Cheers

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

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