The Maiden’s Tower is one of the most iconic landmarks in Istanbul. Built over 2000 years ago, this tower stands tall and proud both as a reminder of the city’s long history and as a beautiful tourist attraction. Let’s take a look at what makes this amazing building so special.
A Brief History
The Maiden’s Tower was built during the reign of the Byzantine emperor Manuel I Comnenus in 1110 AD. Legend has it that the tower was built to protect a princess from a prophecy that she would die by snakebite. It is said that her father had serpents brought to the island in baskets, hoping to prove the prophecy wrong. However, one of them managed to escape and bite her, killing her instantly. This story has been immortalized in many works of art throughout history, with perhaps the most famous being a painting by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres titled La Grande Odalisque (1814).
The Maiden’s Tower Today
Today, visitors can explore inside of the Maiden’s Tower where they will find an array of artifacts and displays that tell its story. Located in the Uskudar district of Istanbul, it can be easily reached by public transportation or by taxi. Tickets can be purchased at the tower itself. There is also an observation deck that offers stunning views of Istanbul below—the perfect way to end your visit! Additionally, there is a café located on-site which serves traditional Turkish cuisine such as mezze platters and other delicious dishes.
Maiden’s Tower Story (Kız Kulesi Hikayesi)
The tower has a long and storied history, dating back to at least the 4th century BC. According to legend, the tower was built by an ancient King of Athens to serve as a checkpoint to protect the city from invaders. It was later used as a lighthouse, a customs station, and a quarantine station. In more recent times, the tower has become a popular tourist attraction and a symbol of Istanbul. One of the most famous legends surrounding the tower is the story of Hero, a priestess of Aphrodite who was in love with Leander, a young man from the opposite shore of the Bosphorus Strait. Leander would swim across the strait every night to be with Hero, but one stormy night, he drowned on his way to the tower. Heartbroken, Hero threw herself from the tower into the sea. The story has inspired numerous works of art and literature over the centuries.
Weather Conditions in Istanbul
Istanbul has a temperate climate, with hot and humid summers and mild, wet winters. The city is located in a transitional zone between the Mediterranean and Black Sea climate regions, which means it experiences some of the characteristics of both. During the summer months, temperatures can reach up to 30°C (86°F) or higher, and the humidity can be quite high, making it feel oppressively hot and sticky. Winters are milder, with temperatures averaging around 10°C (50°F). Rain is common during the winter months, and the city can also experience fog and mist. Overall, the weather in Istanbul is fairly moderate and pleasant, although it can be extreme at times.
If you want to get information about weather conditions in Istanbul, you can check our Weather in Istanbul article.
From its humble beginnings as a landmark to protect against prophecies, to its current status as one of Istanbul’s most beloved attractions, the Maiden’s Tower is truly something special. If you’re ever in Istanbul be sure to make time for this majestic building – you won’t regret it! Whether you’re interested in exploring its rich history or simply taking in some breathtaking views from its observation deck, this incredible piece of architecture deserves your attention!
All About The Maiden’s Tower
When was kiz kulesi built?
The Maiden’s Tower, also known as Kiz Kulesi in Turkish, is located on a small islet in the Bosphorus strait in Istanbul, Turkey. The exact date of its construction is unknown, but it is believed to have been built in the 12th century during the Byzantine era. Some sources suggest that it may have been built even earlier, in the 5th century B.C., during the rule of the Athenian general Alcibiades. Throughout its history, the tower has been used for various purposes, including as a lighthouse, a fortress, and a quarantine station. Despite undergoing several renovations and repairs, the tower still stands today and is a popular tourist attraction.
How tall is the Maiden tower?
The Maiden’s Tower, also known as Kiz Kulesi in Turkish, is approximately 34 meters (112 feet) tall. The tower is located on a small islet in the Bosphorus strait in Istanbul, Turkey. It is a cylindrical shaped tower with a conical roof and a balcony running around the upper part of the tower. The tower’s height and location in the middle of the Bosphorus strait make it a prominent landmark and a popular tourist attraction in Istanbul. It is accessible by boat, and visitors can climb to the top of the tower for panoramic views of the city.
Official Website: https://kizkulesi.com/