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Roman Cisterns Of Istanbul

Explore The Underground of istanbul
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Roman Cisterns Of Istanbul

  • 5 Hours
  • Max People : 18
  • Wifi Available
  • All Year
  • Min Age : 12+
  • Fast Track
Tour Details

Embark on a unique journey to uncover the hidden marvels of Roman engineering beneath the bustling streets of Istanbul’s Old City. These historical treasures, once designed as lifelines to combat the city’s thirst, now stand as mysterious underground ‘cisterns,’ ranging from dry relics to those cradling modest amounts of water.

Among the most exquisite examples of enclosed spaces are the Yerebatan and Binbirdirek cisterns. The largest of these, the Yerebatan Cistern, was commissioned by Emperor Justinian I following the Nika Revolt in 532 A.D. Built by 7,000 workers using remnants of a basilica (the Hagia Sophia) that was destroyed in a fire in 475 A.D., it’s also known as the Basilica Cistern. Today, it’s the most frequented cistern, hosting numerous national and international events.

Our exploration begins at our office, located just behind the BASILICA CISTERN, which will be our first point of interest. Here, we will also encounter the Serpentine Head of the Medusa statue. Following our visit to the Basilica Cistern, your tour guide will lead you to another recently restored cistern, now operating as an underground restaurant, the SARNIÇ RESTAURANT.

We will then proceed to the BINBIRDIREK CISTERN, where we’ll marvel at ancient Roman architecture.

We will continiou our Istanbul Underground Exploring with the Latest Discovery of HIPPODROM SQUARE CISTERN  which is also known with the name Nakkas Cistern.

After a short tea and coffee break in a Cistern ,at DEHLIZ RESTAURANT,near the Grand Bazaar, we’ll visit the SEREFIYE CISTERN, constructed during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Theodosius II between 428 A.D. and 443 A.D., and recently restored by the Istanbul Municipality for cultural activities.

We will finish our Istanbul Underground Exploring with the Latest restored and opened to the public ; the GULHANE PARK CISTERN built by emperor Hadrian ( 117-138 AD.)


1) Basilica Cistern ;

2) Sarnıç Cistern Restaurant ; ( just visit )

3) Binbirdirek Cistern ,

4) Serefiye Cistern,

5) Dehliz Restaurant

6) Hippodrom Square Cistern ( Nakkas Cistern )

7) Gülhane Park Cistern

Departure & Return Location

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Departure Time


Price Includes

  • Tour Guide
  • Entrance Fees
  • (Basilica Cistern 25 € Serefiye 15 € Binbirdirek 15 €)

Price Excludes

  • Lunch
  • Transportation
  • Drinks

Point 1Basilica Cistern

Point 2Sarnıç Cistern Restaurant (visit only)

Point 3Binbirdirek Cistern

Point 4Şerefiye Cistern

Point 5Hippodrome Square Cistern (Nakkas Cistern)

Point 6Gulhane Park Cistern

Point 7Dehliz Restaurant




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