Basilica Cistern

Address: Yerebatan Caddesi No. 13, Sultanahmet, Istanbul, 34410, Turkey
Telephone: 0212 522 12 59

- Budget


Atmospheric underground structure that once supplied Istanbul with water.

With its high ceilings and massive columns, it’s easy to see why this dramatic underground structure is also known as the “Sunken Palace” in Turkish. The Byzantine-era cistern was once a key element in bringing water to the city from the Belgrade Forest; today, it’s a half-romantic, half-spooky place to wander through on wooden walkways constructed above the water.

Value for money

Price advice

Admission is 10 lira.

Expert tips

Visiting the cistern is a great way to cool off in the middle of a hot summer day.

Recommended for

  • Culture vultures
  • Families with younger children
  • History
  • Design and architecture