Why Visit Basilica Cistern

Visiting the Basilica Cistern in Istanbul is a must-do activity for any traveler to the city. This underground cistern was built in the 6th century during the reign of Emperor Justinian I and has been beautifully preserved over the centuries. With its striking columns, mysterious Medusa heads, and tranquil atmosphere, the Basilica Cistern offers a unique and unforgettable experience for visitors.

When planning a visit to the Basilica Cistern, it is important to note that the site can be quite busy during peak tourist season, especially during midday. To avoid crowds and fully appreciate the cistern's beauty, it is best to visit early in the morning or later in the afternoon. It is also recommended to purchase tickets in advance to avoid waiting in long lines.

Plan your Visit to Basilica Cistern

Opening Hours
Best Time to Visit
How To Reach
Opening Hours
  • The Basilica Cistern is open every day of the week for visitors.
  • The opening hours may vary depending on the season and local holidays.
  • As of September 2021, the cistern is open from 9:00 am to 6:30 pm.
  • The last entry is at 6:00 pm, so visitors should arrive early enough to allow time to explore.
  • The cistern may be closed or have limited access during special events or maintenance work.
  • Visitors should check the official website or local tourism boards for any announcements or changes to the opening hours before heading to the Basilica Cistern

Places to Visit Near Basilica Cistern >>


What is the Basilica Cistern?

    The Basilica Cistern is an underground water storage chamber built in the 6th century during the Byzantine period. It is one of the largest surviving cisterns in Istanbul.

Where is the Basilica Cistern located?

Is there an entrance fee to visit the Basilica Cistern?

What can visitors see at the Basilica Cistern?

Is the Basilica Cistern accessible for people with disabilities?

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