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.

“Very eerie”
Review of Basilica Cistern

Basilica Cistern
Book In Advance
More Info
$38.75*
and up
Private Half-day Tour: Imperial Istanbul - Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern and...
More Info
$50.00*
and up
Imperial Istanbul Half-Day Tour: Hagia Sophia, Basillica Cistern and Grand...
More Info
$112.63*
and up
Dan Brown 'Inferno' Tour of Istanbul
Ranked #6 of 1,061 things to do in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
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.
Huntingdon
Level 5 Contributor
87 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“Very eerie”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

What a very strange place, it is very eerie with the music playing and being so dark, there are fishes swimming in the water very odd, but it is very interesting to see and I am glad we took the trouble to visit it

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Lostmarbles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

24,915 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    16,571
    6,377
    1,659
    230
    78
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Czech first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Hebrew first
  • Hungarian first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Serbian first
  • Slovak first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Thai first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Dundee, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Wow those Romans!”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

You could miss this, I did the first day wasn't as well signposted as some of the other attractions. Going underground and seeing the columns, the size of the cistern and the sheer brilliance of this fete of underground architecture was the highlight of my trip

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Annadocmartin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Millsboro, Delaware
Level 6 Contributor
179 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“This would be great on a hot summer day”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

There was a bit of line to get in and then we had to deal with groups of people once we were down inside, but it was pretty neat to see how the ancients stored water. It was nice and refreshing and this would be a terrific place to take a break on a hot summer day.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Budrox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
93 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Didn't know anything about it!”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

Our guide took us here one day and I didn't know what to expect. After all, it apparently was a place to store drinking water in the case of an enemy siege. But I had no expectation of the vast size of the facility itself, nor of the massive columns that supported the roof. Well worth the visit and it can be done in less than an hour.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank parkietx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Basel, Switzerland
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Dont miss it”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

It may not sound as interesting as other attractions, but it is definitely worth the visit. Amazing how such an hold subterranean structure is still intact.

There are two special columns with a medusa head on them. Usually where there is a bunch of people. Nice opportunity for a picture.

Tip if you have children: bring some bread. There are fishes in the Cistern and they will provide some amusement when fed.

Takes around 30 min, if I remember correctly it costs around 10TL per person.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Rodrigo O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Basilica Cistern also viewed

 

Been to Basilica Cistern? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing