Basilica Cistern

TripExpert Score based on reviews in 4 publications
  • 1175833
  • 1175834
  • 1175835
Badge 82


say expert reviewers

Top 1% in Istanbul About the TripExpert Score

4 expert recommendations


Fodor's Tick Choice

A journey through this ancient underground waterway takes you along dimly lit walkways that weave around 336 marble columns rising 26 feet to support Byzantine arches and domes. Full review →

Come early to avoid the long lines and have a more peaceful visit.

Let's Go

Built more than 1400 years ago under the direction of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian—the same guy responsible for the Hagia Sophia—this underground cistern once stored water for the whole city. Full review →


Lonely Planet Tick Top Choice

When those Byzantine emperors built something, they certainly did it properly! Full review →


Travel + Leisure

Eighty-two feet below Istanbul is a 450-foot-long, 213-foot-wide former royal reservoir. Full review →

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