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Posts tagged ‘Byzantine Empire’

Basilica Cistern, Istanbul

Basilica Cistern, Istanbul

Basilica Cistern entrance view, Istanbul (Photo: Daydream Tourist)

How does a city surrounded by the ocean get enough fresh water to support a population of nearly half a million people?  The answer for Byzantine Emperors Constantine and Justinian I was a 19km aqueduct that emptied into a massive reservoir beneath Constantinople.  Today you can visit the Basilica Cistern; the entrance is about a block away from the Hagia Sophia.  The cavernous pool is cool, dimly lit and a quiet retreat from the tourist commotion above.  I thought it was incredibly beautiful and peaceful and spent about an hour very slowly wandering through it.

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