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Maiden’s Tower: Legendary Structure of Istanbul

The Maiden’s Tower, one of the most important symbols of Istanbul, is a unique structure that has been the subject of many legends in history. This historical building, located right in the middle of the Marmara Sea, provides a unique beauty to the silhouette of Istanbul. Here is a detailed introduction about the Maiden’s Tower:

The Maiden’s Tower: A Legendary Building of Istanbul

The Maiden’s Tower, one of the most stunning symbols of the Bosphorus, is a mysterious structure that has been the subject of many legends throughout history. This gorgeous tower rising in the middle of the sea, off the coast of Salacak, has witnessed the history of Istanbul and has been used for many different purposes. The Maiden’s Tower has been the subject of many different legends in the following years. (*fazla tekrar olmuş, bu cümle çıkarılsa iyi olur)

The most famous legend of the Maiden’s Tower is the story of “Hero and Leander”. According to legend, a girl named Hero lives in the Maiden’s Tower. Leander, who is in love with her, lives on the opposite shore and every night he swims and comes to the Maiden’s Tower to see his love. But one night a storm breaks out and Leander drowns. When Hero learns about lover’s death, she commits suicide by jumping from the Maiden’s Tower. This legend has become a symbol of love and death.

Today, the Maiden’s Tower is one of Istanbul’s most popular touristic attractions. Visitors can reach this historical building by boat and enjoy its unique view. The Maiden’s Tower also serves as a restaurant and has become a popular venue for special events.

The silhouette of the Maiden’s Tower is one of the unique beauties of Istanbul. At sunset and when illuminated at night, this historical building complements the magnificent view of Istanbul. The Maiden’s Tower is a unique structure symbolizing the history, culture and romance of Istanbul. This historical building, which attracts thousands of visitors every year, awaits its visitors as one of the legendary beauties of Istanbul.


Dating back 2500 years, this unique structure has lived a history equal to the history of Istanbul and has been an eyewitness to the events this city has experienced. With a history dating back to antiquity, from Ancient Greece to the Byzantine Empire and from Byzantium to the Ottoman Empire, it has been present in all of these historical eras and has survived to the present day.

Historical evidence shows that the tower was first mentioned in 410 BC. Built by the Athenian general Alcibiades, the tower was used to control the ships passing through the Bosphorus and to collect taxes. After Constantinople fell under Roman rule, Byzantine Emperor Manuel Comnenos had the building reinforced with stones and designed it as a complete tower and turned it into a defense building. The tower which was underwent one more restoration during the Ottoman period, was the stage for the performances of the Ottoman military band. The foundations of the tower today and important parts of the lower floor were built during the reign of Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror.

The Maiden’s Tower, which has been damaged and restored many times throughout its history, was opened to tourism in 2000 after the restoration works started in 1998.

Its Location

It was built on a small island off the coast of Salacak, where the Black Sea meets the Marmara Sea. Transportation to the Maiden’s Tower is provided by boats from Salacak and Ortakoy.

Its Cultural Effects

The Maiden’s Tower on the back side of a 10 Turkish Lira banknote (1966-1981).

On the back side of the 10 Turkish Lira banknotes in circulation between 1966 and 1981, there was a depiction of the Maiden’s Tower. The 1/25 scale model of the tower is being exhibited in Miniaturk.

There are 2 different options to go to the Maiden’s Tower.

You can reach the Maiden’s Tower by boat service from Uskudar Salacak and Kabatas.

The Maiden’s Tower services departing from Uskudar Salacak take place every 15 minutes between 09.00-19.00. Kabatas to Maiden’s Tower services are available every hour between 10.00-18.00 only on weekends.

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