If you’re visiting Istanbul, Turkey, you must add the Basilica Cistern to your list of must-see attractions. This ancient underground water cistern, also known as the Yerebatan Sarayı or the Sunken Palace, is one of the most unique and impressive historical sites in the city.
In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into the history, architecture, and cultural significance of the Basilica Cistern.
Basilica Cistern tickets are essential to explore one of Istanbul’s most captivating underground wonders. This ancient water reservoir, built during the Roman period, boasts impressive Medusa heads and stunning lighting effects. With your Basilica Cistern tickets, you can wander around the dimly lit corridors and marvel at the grand architecture of this subterranean marvel.
There are plenty of exciting things to do near Basilica Cistern that will enrich your Istanbul experience. You can take a stroll through the beautiful gardens of Topkapi Palace or visit the Hagia Sophia Museum, a stunning example of Byzantine architecture.
Additionally, you can shop for souvenirs at the Grand Bazaar or indulge in Turkish cuisine at a nearby restaurant.
History of the Basilica Cistern
Built in the 6th century during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian I, the Basilica Cistern was designed to store water for the city’s growing population. It’s estimated that the cistern could hold up to 80,000 cubic meters of water, which was delivered through aqueducts from as far away as the Belgrade Forest.
Over the centuries, the Basilica Cistern fell into disrepair and was forgotten until the 16th century, when Ottoman traveler Evliya Çelebi rediscovered it. The cistern was restored during Ottoman times and continued to provide water to the city until the 19th century. Today, it’s a popular tourist attraction that draws visitors from around the world.
Architecture and Design of the Basilica Cistern
The Basilica Cistern features a unique architectural design that blends Roman and Byzantine styles. The cistern is supported by 336 columns, each of which is 9 meters high and spaced 4.8 meters apart. The columns are arranged in 12 rows, with each row consisting of 28 columns. The roof of the cistern is made of brick and features vaulted ceilings that add to the cistern’s sense of grandeur.
One of the most striking features of the Basilica Cistern is the Medusa Heads, two marble pillars that are carved with the head of Medusa. The pillars are believed to have been taken from a Roman temple and reused in the cistern. One pillar is placed upside down, while the other is on its side, which adds to the mysterious and eerie atmosphere of the cistern.
Cultural Significance of the Basilica Cistern
The Basilica Cistern has played an important role in Istanbul’s history and culture. In addition to providing water to the city, the cistern has been the site of several important events and ceremonies. For example, in 1914, the Ottoman Empire held a ceremony in the cistern to mark the start of the construction of the Baghdad Railway. The ceremony was attended by high-ranking Ottoman officials as well as German diplomats.
Today, the Basilica Cistern is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. Visitors can explore the cistern’s unique architecture and learn about its history and cultural significance. The cistern is also used as a venue for special events, such as concerts and art exhibitions.
The Basilica Cistern is a truly unique and impressive historical site that offers visitors a glimpse into Istanbul’s rich history and culture. Its fascinating architecture, mysterious atmosphere, and cultural significance make it a must-see attraction for anyone visiting the city.
Whether you’re a history buff, an architecture enthusiast, or just looking for an interesting place to visit, the Basilica Cistern is sure to leave a lasting impression.
“I want to visit Turkey” is the line I often hear when I speak to other travel loving folks, but not all could turn their wish into reality. There are many reasons why people couldn’t make it and one common reason which people give is “Turkey is beautiful but very expensive”.
Turkey: A Transcontinental Country
I must say this is the biggest myth, Turkey is expensive if you don’t plan your trip well and if you don’t know what is there to see in Turkey. I was fortunate to turn my wish into reality.
It was a wonderful solo trip for 11 days where I had one of my best travel experiences traveling across Turkey at a very reasonable cost. I thought of sharing my Turkish experience with everyone, and if this blog could motivate at least one person to travel, I would consider this blog as successful one.
Why Visit Turkey?
Turkey has such lucrative landscape and culture which attract millions of visitors from across the globe and I wanted to be in that one in the million for sure, but the distance from India to Turkey so far that I really had to make up my mind that I will visit it no matter what.
Also, after visiting quite a good number of countries in South East and East Asia, I was sure my next destination is going to be different from my past travel and Turkey fitted in very well in my requirement.
The mix of Europe and Asia in the beautiful city of Istanbul, fairy chimneys in Cappadocia, and Ephesus’ historical sites looked so exciting in the photos, videos, and the blogs I read that I couldn’t stop myself from visiting the same and experiencing it all on my own.
The decision to visit Turkey is something which makes me feel satisfied as a traveler.
A Sample Itinerary & Travel Routes
I must say, to decide for a Turkey solo trip was a difficult choice but to decide what to see inside Turkey was even harder as there are so many things to see in Turkey that my 11 days vacation looked way too shorter.
So based on the number of days I had and the season, I picked up the below itinerary for my trip.
Bangalore, India to Istanbul, Turkey
Leg 1: Kuwait Airways > Landed in Istanbul > Turkish Air (to Cappadocia)
Leg 3: Selcuk > Izmir (by Train) > Istanbul (by Flight)
Things to See in Turkey
Let me detail out things which I covered in each of my stopovers.
After landing in Istanbul at around 3:00 PM in afternoon, I had a same day connecting flight at 6:00 PM for Navshahar and a shuttle booked in Navshahar airport to take me to my hostel booked in Gorame, Cappadocia.
Cappadocia is a wonder world and certainly a heart of Turkey that no one should miss. You can explore the city on your own or take a group tour based on time which you have in Cappadocia.
So I decided to combine both. On the first day, I took a green tour in a group covering the fairy chimney, underground city, monastery, etc. And the next two days, I spent exploring the city on my own by foot and by local transportation available.
Apart from the Fairy chimneys, Cappadocia is also a popular destination for people who love Hot Air Balloons. Since I had already done the hot air balloon in the past, I wasn’t interested to take it again but I did make sure to get up early in the morning to see hundreds of balloons taking off at one shot.
After spending three days in Cappadocia, I took an overnight bus to Pamukkale. Bus tickets were easily available for comfortable overnight journey which dropped me in Pamukkale by 5:00 AM in the morning.
Since the main attraction of Pamukkale (Cotton Castle) opens only by 8 AM, so I had some time in hand and I sipped a cup of Turkish coffee and waited for the gate to open.
I must say I was the first one to enter that morning from that specific entrance. It made me happy.
I spent half a day in Pamukkale admiring the beauty of mineral-rich thermal waters flowing down white travertine terraces, Hierapolis ancient theater, and other attractions in the vicinity.
Once I was done with it, I took a mini bus to Denzli from where I took about four hour train ride to Selcuk.
Selcuk is the town which people generally use it for stop over when they are visiting the UNESCO Heritage Site of Ephesus.
But I must say Selcuk is much more than just a stopover. This beautiful town is popular for its cafe culture and it’s wonderful to just walk around and enjoy the chilled vibe of Selcuk.
In my two days in Selcuk, I visited the famous ruins of Ephesus to experience the ancient Roman culture and architectures. Afterwards, I went to visit the Saint John’s Basilica, a beautiful historical place just in the city center and worth visiting any day.
During the evenings, I spent my time sipping famous Turkish tea with Seesha (also known as Hookah). The next day, I took a minibus to go to Sirince Wine Village about an hour drive from city.
This village is embraced in such a way that once reach here sure you don’t want to leave at all. I took my slow walk going around the village for the good part of that day.
Next early morning, I took a train from Selcuk to Izmir which took about an hour. Izmir is a laid back city in the west coast of Turkey. It is one of the biggest port city in the region and walking around the seafront (Kordon) is defiantly one of the best experience in Izmir.
Apart from waterfront and the clock tower in city center, the local market was a wonderful experience to visit. Overall, my days spent in Izmir was pretty tiring as I had just a day to explore the city but it was worth every moment.
After spending a day in Izmir, I took early morning flight to Istanbul to spend the rest of my three and half days remaining before returning back to India.
Istanbul took my heart even before the airplane landed. The view from the small plane window was so tempting that I couldn’t wait any longer to explore the city.
Istanbul have two side of it, a European side with much of the night life and an Asian side with all the historical sites. I took a shuttle bus to Kadikoy Ferry Terminal. I took the Ferry and Metro from there to go to Sultanahmet where my stay for the next two nights were booked.
Soon I realized that three days is not at all going to be sufficient to see Istanbul, so I need to pick what I really want to see in these three days.
So the plan I made was, one day I will spend in Prince Island, second day I will spend exploring the historical side of Istanbul, and on the final day I will spend exploring the modern side of Istanbul around the Taksim Square area.
Clock Tower in Izmir
Prince Island is the group of 9 small islands about two hours ferry ride from the mainland of Istanbul. Out of the 9 islands, only 4 islands are inhabitable and the rest remain unexplored.
Büyükada is one of biggest island and considered the most beautiful among all 9 islands. So I took an early morning ferry for this island and spent the rest of that day mesmerizing over this totally mystical and unique side of Turkey.
Sultanahmet is the area where major historical attraction of Istanbul is centered. The beautiful and well known blue mosque, Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, and the Grand Bazar are all here.
All these historical places are so beautiful that you can spend entire day just visiting one of them, since I had just a day time to explore I made sure that I could manage my time in such a way that I don’t miss any of these famous attractions.
For the last two nights I had booked my hostel near the Taksim Square which is the ultra-modern side of Istanbul where all-night parties are common. My morning started with walking around the famous İstiklal Caddesi and visiting the Galata Tower and enjoying the Turkish delight and my evenings ended with a couple of beers in a local pub.
On the last day, I woke up with a sad face thinking my wonderful time is about to end now. I had my breakfast, took a walk of İstiklal Caddesi for the last time, and got into the metro for the airport to catch my flight back home.
The myth about travelling is “it is an expensive thing” needs to be broken. In my view, traveling at times is cheaper than staying home. The longer you travel the cheaper it is.
In my Turkey trip I wanted to make sure that I spend on things which is needed and not things which good to have.
For any kind of travel, the major expenses can be categorized in three categories: Food, Accommodation, and Transportation. Let me put this little bit more in detail from Turkey travel perspective.
Turkish food is indeed a delight whether you are a vegetarian or non-vegetarian or continental or authentic country food lover. It has variety of options available and suitable for everyone.
An average meal in a decent mid-range restaurant cost anywhere between 12-20 TL ($5 USD). So in less than $20 USD, I was able to survive for a day in Turkey eating three meals which is way less than what normally people think. Not to be missed is their famous “Turkish delight” desserts, which is mouthwatering.
Accommodation in Turkey
In my entire trip to Turkey, I stayed in hostels where average cost was no more than $15 USD per night and in many cases it even included free breakfast. And trust me, it was without compromising the cleanliness and location in any manner.
Transportation in Turkey
Your international flight tickets consumes the major part of travel expense and it really differ from which city/country you are taking your flight. So I will not be able to give a correct estimation on that but what I can share is an average travel expense once you land in Turkey.
I took two domestic flights in turkey and one overnight bus and a train. Both of my flight tickets were less than $50 USD each, and the overnight bus ticket was about $25 USD and the four hour long train journies were not more then $10 USD each.
So transportation of any mode is relatively very cheap compare to anywhere else in Europe. Specifically in Istanbul you can take the prepaid Istanbul card which acts as a ticket for all city transport system including ferry in very basic cost.
Additional Information on Expenses
Museum pass is available that covers all major historical sites in Istanbul at the cost of 125 TL which will cover around 6 attractions in the city and if you buy ticket individually it will cost you about 40 TL each.
Istanbul card is like a prepaid card which you can load it with cash at once and use it for all public transport in city in lesser price than paying in cash. So highly recommended to take this card.
Apart from the places which I visited there are few other very good places which you can visit in Turkey based on time available. Few of my recommendation few are Konya, Antalya, Fethiye, etc.
In my entire trip I had not used private Taxi anywhere, so if you are someone who would prefer exclusive taxi service then expense will go higher.
Finally all I can say is, Turkey is defiantly one of the best country I have visited so far and I would recommend all travelers to plan for it.
Hi, I am Chandan Sharma. Working as a full-time job for a financial firm but still making a time to travel across different countries is my passion. This passion had taken me through 21 countries so far, mainly in Asia, Europe and just a glimpse of east Africa. The goal is to make it at least 50 countries before I turn 50.
Feel free to visit my Instagram page ‘Travel Freak Mr Sharma’ to a walkthrough of my travel journey. Do not hesitate to drop me a message in case if you need any further information on Turkey or any of the country which I visited.
Medical tourism has become quite popular. Many patients can receive treatment at affordable prices compared to what they would pay in their home country.
An increase in the number of medical care professionals, patients, and technological improvements have catapulted the following nations to the list of top medical tourism destinations.
The following countries are chosen for the availability of data, accessibility, price and internal framework. Consequently, consumers from abroad are seeking treatment in these destinations:
From plastic surgery to neurological therapies, Israel supplies various clinical and healthcare solutions. Despite the recurring security issues, local professionals are committed to preserving the country’s medical tourism industry.
The country faces political crises, but the economic situation is flourishing. This economic upturn is reflected in the low price of treatments. Clinical specialists have more up-to-date methods and cures than their colleagues in other countries.
The area around the Dead Sea is popular for skin therapies. Visitors can use seawater to cure psoriasis and associated problems. Plus, the high atmospheric pressure in the area naturally helps patients with cystic fibrosis.
Thailand is popular another nation known for cosmetic plastic surgery. For 20 years, Bangkok’s Bumrungrad International Hospital has been treating international clients. According to Patients Beyond Borders, approximately 1.2 million individuals visited the clinic in 2015 alone.
South Korea brings in a steady flow of foreign travelers. Many of which visit South Korea to explore unrivaled Korean traditional medication, Otorhinolaryngology, infertility treatment, oral medicines, ophthalmology, spine treatment, joint/rheumatism care, organ & hair transplant, cancer cell treatment and extensive health and wellness trials.
Some of the most popular healthcare treatments amongst medical vacationers in South Korea include skin lightening, rhinoplasty, and eyelid surgical procedures.
Turkey attracts medical tourists from the Middle East, Eurasia, the United States, and Europe. Plus, the personal health treatment system strives to be one of the critical wellness service providers in the world.
The nation is also home to the highest number of Joint Commission, internationally accredited, clinical establishments around the world. Turkey is second only to the United States.
Although Puerto Rico is new to many clinical and healthcare travelers, it gives travelers various benefits. This island is easily accessible and it has clinical knowledge and medical care frameworks that match those in Europe and the United States.
Most of the trained doctors comply with privileging and credentialing demands that resemble those in the United States healthcare facilities. The fees, however, are higher than in various other emerging medical tourism destinations.
India has a variety of perks for the medical tourist. Compliance with international specifications, accessibility to the most current clinical technology and reduced expense are just some of such advantages. The federal government is likewise taking steps to offer a framework that will attract even more clinical tourists.
Popular procedures include orthopedic surgery, eye surgery, heart bypass surgery, and bone transplants, among others. Currently, Chennai is the ultimate healthcare destination for medical tourists in India.
With more than half a million medical travelers coming to the nation yearly, Malaysia places as one of the most health and wellness care friendly spots for those looking to find help outside of their country. Even Americans come to the country’s large English-speaking populace and solid facilities.
In order to diversify its economic situation amidst the Asian financial crises, Malaysia invested in its medical tourism industry. Malaysian medical facilities are recognized as major players in vitro fertilizing at a cost that’s 20 percent less than many other western medical centers. Malaysia’s medical facilities are also known for their innovative treatment of burn victims.
People searching for an affordable alternative to plastic surgery should visit Brazil, which is one of the top locations in the world for these procedures.
According to Patients Beyond Borders, around 200,000 international tourists visited Brazil in 2013 for cosmetic treatments. Plus, the savings are extreme, with costs about 30-50 percent below what American physicians would charge for treatment.
Furthermore, medical tourism in Brazil has long been known for its Ivo Pitanguy Clinic in Rio de Janeiro, which performed more cosmetic surgery procedures than any other places in the world.
If you are an adventurous soul in the mood to travel off the beaten path, check out our top 40 exotic places to visit in the world. These 40 unique or unusual places have made it to the top of our adventure travel destinations list.
Bay of Kotor, Montenegro
Also known as Boka, this marvelous bay attracts numerous travelers with its emerald waters and picturesque mountains.
The shore is spotted with beautiful medieval towns, such as Perast, where you can stop for a meal and interact with locals.
The lost city of Petra, which rises out of the cliff between the Red and the Dead Seas, still holds many secrets.
It has several tombs and carved structures, which spread across its sandy landscape. The big blockbuster “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” was filmed here.
The enchanting Gozo Island is a part of the Maltese archipelago. It is one of the top diving destinations in the Mediterranean region. Gozo also boasts of mystical backwaters, historic forts, and amazing panoramas.
Great Blue Hole, Belize
This submarine sinkhole is present on every diver’s bucket list. Even if you are not a diving enthusiast, it is still worth visiting for a breathtaking view.
Amer Fort, India
Because of its majestic structure and architecture, Amer Fort is a prime example of Mughal and Hindu cultural influences.
The fort is constructed of red sandstone and white marble. It consists of courtyards, palaces, halls, and gardens.
The razor sharp vertical rocks provide a truly magnificent view. It is surprising that wildlife can even exist in this place.
You can hike around the bizarre pinnacles of limestones and observe different kinds of birds and lemurs.
This place has no roads, and the only way to get to the Nepalese village is through a series of footpaths. On the way, you can admire the views of Mount Makalu, the world’s fifth-tallest peak.
Pisco Elqui Valley, Chile
Surrounded by fabulous Andean mountains, this village has perfect weather all year round. It is wonderful to camp here and gaze at the stars in the night sky.
This region offers caves, clefts, pinnacles and pointed rock formations, known as “fairy chimneys.” Numerous volcanic eruptions formed a surreal moonscape. This area is Turkey’s most visually striking region.
Con Dao, Vietnam
The Islands of Con Dao offers fascinating hiking and exploring opportunities, as well as empty coastal roads, deserted beaches, and a chance for observing the wildlife.
Con Dao National Park, which protects Vietnam’s most important sea turtle nesting grounds, occupies most of the area.
The Cook Islands
There is a popular opinion that the Cook Islands are the best-kept secret in the Pacific Ocean. The 15 islands boast perfect climate and exotic beauty all-year-round.
Isle of Skye, Scotland
The misty Cuillin Hills offer stunning sceneries, beautiful hikes, and spectacular photo opportunities. From the Isle of Skye, you can enjoy these beautiful rolling hills.
Mount Rainier, Washington
This is one of the world’s most dangerous volcanoes. On a clear day, you can watch the mountain from many points in the area.
However, for a more up-close experience, you can walk through the alpine fields, hike the massive glaciers and see waterfalls cascading around nearly every bend.
Mount Roraima, Venezuela
This place serves as the natural border between Venezuela, Brazil, and Guyana. It is a truly extraordinary natural geologic formation. The area inspired Conan Doyle’s “Lost World” and “Avatar.”
Cano Cristales, Colombia
Called the “Liquid Rainbow,” this Colombian wonder is a must-visit place if you travel to South America. It is probably the most beautiful river in the world.
The best time to visit is from July to November. During these months, the river is full of colors: green, blue, black and red.
Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
It is the world’s largest salt flat, and it is utterly breathtaking, especially after a rain when they create a mirror effect. In the center, the salt is about 10 meters thick.
It is a scenic natural wonder, which consists of sedimentary rock and water flowing from two distinct mineral springs.
This destination is full of picturesque sand dunes, surrounded by clay pans. The most surreal attraction in the region is the Deadvlei, where the dead acacia trees contrast the white shiny salty floor of the pan.
Would you like to stand at the “Hell’s Door”? Derweze is a giant illuminated hole, rich in natural gas, in the middle of the Karakum Desert. The crater has existed for over 40 years now, and the flames have been burning ever since. There is no plans to put this fire off.
Icehotel, Jukkasjarvi, Sweden
Are you afraid of the cold weather? Jukkasjarvi lies approximately 124 miles above the Arctic Circle and hosts the Icehotel, though only during the winter months.
The hotel is almost entirely made of ice, including beds. There is also a church, a hall, and a bar, where glasses are carved from ice.
Great Sand Dunes, Colorado
This destination offers the most exotic hike in the United States. These unique landforms are the tallest dunes in the country and rise to over 700 feet in height. However, if you hike up to the top, you will get the reward of panoramic views of endless dunes.
Dean’s Blue Hole, Bahamas
The name “blue hole” comes from the bright blue color, which you can see from above the hole. Dean’s Blue Hole is the deepest in the world. Its depth is around 600 feet.
Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, Maldives
The restaurant is located 16 feet below sea level. The sides and the roof are made of clear glass, which allows guests to observe the sea life, while they dine.
Pamukkale Thermal Pools, Turkey
Multiple natural hot springs cascade down and fill these thermal pools with water. The place is not just great for relaxation, but also offers a breathtaking view. So, don’t forget your camera!
Aleutian Islands, Alaska
The Aleutian Islands are not a destination for beach-lovers and sunbathing enthusiasts. This is a place for exploring nature, and it is a real paradise for adventure lovers!
One of the most remote places in Alaska, these islands boast of abundant wildlife, harsh climate, stormy seas, and active volcanoes. While there are a few settlements on larger islands, you’ll probably still meet more animals than people here.
Arashimaya Bamboo Forest, Japan
This place is just filled with famous tombs and temples. Close to the “Moon Crossing Bridge,” the forest is definitely worth exploring.
Tanzania is one of the best places to go on a safari. It is also home to Mount Kilimanjaro. Make sure to visit the Tarangire National Park, one of the last undiscovered jewels of Africa.
There are very few people in the world who haven’t heard of this place. Now abandoned, the city of Pripyat once housed thousands of families. The families of the plant workers were forced to leave after the 1986 disaster.
There are numerous striking photos of the ghost town on the Internet. Besides the crumbling houses and rusty machinery, there is a new side of the city.
In 30 years, Pripyat has been overtaken by lush greenery and transformed into a forest. The area is open for tours nowadays, though only with authorized guides. It is almost entirely radiation-safe.
Castle Stalker, Scotland
Castle Stalker is one of the most intriguing tourist spots in Scotland. The strange mountainous setting and historical design make the destination very attractive to travelers.
Today, Castle Stalker remains under private ownership, but visitors can visit during the summer season. Even though it may be difficult to get to the island, the area is definitely worth visiting.
Road to Tusheti, Georgia
Tusheti is a region in northeast Georgia, located at 5,413-14,740 ft above sea level. Such altitudes gave rise to captivating scenery. Because Tusheti is on the northern slopes of the Caucasian Mountains, it is challenging to arrive there.
The road to Tusheti is one of the most dangerous roads in the world. It lies on mountain slopes and goes up 9,842 ft over the gorges of Tusheti. So, if you are up for a little adrenaline rush, you should take a drive up to this road.
Holy Meteora, Greece
Although most tourists visit Greece in search of the sea and beach relaxation, somewhere above 400 meters lies an unforgettable sightseeing opportunity.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site, Meteora, is situated on a 60-million-year-old rock formation. In Greek, Meteora means “suspended in the air,” a fitting name for this destination. Even if you are not into pilgrimage sites, hiking to the Meteora would be an unforgettable travel experience.
As an easier plan, you can take a bus or a rental car up to the top, and enjoy the spectacular sunset from the specially designed viewing point.
When you hear Peru, you probably immediately think of Machu Picchu. However, not many people know about the breathtaking natural setting of Vinicunca. It is a haven for hikers, although you should be in good physical condition, as the trek is rather challenging.
Getting to the location takes at least six days depending on your speed, but it is totally worth it! Each of the mountain peaks in this area is covered in wide lines of pastel blue, intense red, green, pink and yellow.
Thanks to the bright coloration they are known as the Rainbow mountains.
Lake Kaindy, Kazakhstan
Being almost a century old, the deep blue Lake Kaindy is not easy to find in the Kungey Alatau Mountains. Even though getting there is not easy, it is certainly worth visiting. When you arrive at the lake, you will see dozens of dark brown trunks rising from the water.
Also, the color of the water varies from glimmering blue to alpine green. These features make the place a genuinely surreal wonder hidden in the deep forests.
When you arrive at Alberobello, a small town in Southern Italy, and see the long series of small dimensional houses, you will surely think you are in a fairytale hobbit’s world.
Looking rather fragile, Trulli (specifically-built tiny roundhouses), is surprisingly over five centuries old. Locals, as well as tourists, still live there.
Nyaung Ohak, Myanmar
Another fairytale destination lies right next to Lake Inle in Myanmar. It is an impressive series of history sightseeing objectives, which won’t leave anyone indifferent.
Nyaung Ohak offers a unique combination of history, complex architecture, and nature, and it is surely worth the effort.
Uluru Waterfalls, Australia
The Uluru rock formation is over 600 million years old, which makes it one of the oldest in the world. Due to the climate conditions of the region, it only rains a few times during the year.
However, those who are lucky to visit after the rain, are amazed by the beauty of the water show. The large quantities of water run from the top of the rock, creating an illusion of numerous small waterfalls.
Also, the wet rocks change their color and turn from gray into various shades of red, dark red, and brown.
Here is the list of the 20 most popular tourist destinations around the world (in 2016). Read on and get travel inspiration for your next big trip.
With 21.47 million annual visitors, the capital of Thailand is the first Asian city to join the top destinations list. Bangkok attracts travelers with its unique culture, food, a wide range of attractions, and low prices. However, you can still look at the list of free things to do in Bangkok and budget accommodations in the city if your budget for the trip is not very big.
London used to be at the top of the list before Bangkok took the lead. With 19.88 million visitors it is in the second spot. When you visit London you can meet for a date near Big Ben, follow Harry Potter to Hogwarts or visit one of London’s quirky museums.
The capital of Great Britain is very popular, although it is a rather expensive tourist destination. However, you can always find free things to do in the city and budget accommodations.
Unlike all the other destinations, Paris has lost a number of visitors in the recent years. Nevertheless, with 18.03 million visitors, it is still a very popular city among travelers. There is definitely much to see in the capital city of France.
Furthermore, if you are on a low budget, there are things you can do in Paris for free. Plus, you can find inexpensive places to live.
Dubai is the only Middle Eastern destination on this list. Every year Dubai is becoming more and more popular. With 15.27 million visitors a year, Dubai leads the middle east region. The capital of the United Arab Emirates is one of the top destinations for luxury travel in the world. Even people with a limited budget can have fun in the city. There is a variety of things you can do in Dubai for free, as well as many budget accommodations in the city.
New York City is the only American city on the list. It also tops the list of the most popular New Year destinations in the USA. There are a lot of cool things you can do in New York. Plus, there are a lot of things you can learn from New Yorkers. The city isn’t the cheapest travel destination. However, you can always find cheap accommodations and free things to do, even in New York.
This city in Southeast Asia lies at the crossroads of the Asia-Pacific region. Singapore offers fantastic food, unique culture, and a world-leading airline. These are just some of the attributes that make Singapore so popular among travelers. You can read more about the must-see places in Singapore by clicking here. Plus, you can find free activities throughout the city. You can always find a cheap accommodation to spend the night in the city if you have a small budget.
Kuala Lumpur is an important link between Asia and the Middle East. There a lot of places in Malaysia, which you should see at least once in a lifetime. There are also loads of attractions in the capital city, as well as things to do here for free. If you are on a low budget, you will also be glad to know that there are a lot of budget accommodations in Kuala Lumpur.
Its location at the crossroads between Europe and Asia is one of the features, which makes Istanbul a very popular tourist destination. In fact, it is expected that the capital of Turkey might reach the top of the list by 2020. It is also a popular place for budget travelers. The city offers a wide variety of free things to do and cheap accommodations, including choices of Couchsurfing hosts. The Turkish are very hospitable! And, of course, there are many other places to visit in Turkey, apart from Istanbul. Just pick the one you like, and set sail!
Tokyo is one of the largest shopping cities in the world. However, that is not the only thing that attracts travelers to the capital of Japan. Unique oriental culture, food and various attractions make the city one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Also, Japan is one of the most family-friendly countries in Asia.
Seoul, South Korea – 10.20 million visitors
Seoul is not only the center of modern technologies nowadays, but it is also an attractive tourist destination. Plus, Seoul becomes more and more popular every year. The capital of South Korea offers its visitors a vivid nightlife, with prices affordable even to students. It also places among the top destinations in the world, which people most want to visit.
Turkey revels in the glory of the bygone period. It has tokens from Roman, Greek, Ottoman and Byzantine period. Historical heritage is not the only attraction in Turkey. The vivid sceneries and diverse climate add an unusual beauty to it. It is located between the two giants- Asia and Europe. The capital is Ankara. When you travel to Turkey, do not miss out these places.
STEP ON PAMUKKALE
The serene stretch of land greeting your eyes will amaze you. The white terraces are a stark contrast to the green scenery throughout. Pamukkale is a world-class tourist destination. You should see this once in your lifetime. It seems like the stairs that will lead you to heaven.
But sadly they don’t. Instead, there is a Roman ruin on top the stone hill. The Roman Hierapolis is present at the peak. The white stairs are called travertine. They have been created from calcium deposit of the nearby spring. Visit this unique natural wonder.
PARAGLIDING IN OLUDENIZ
It is one of the best paragliding location not only in Turkey but also in the world. Oludeniz is covered from all sides with natural barriers. The Babadag mountains rise above the shore of Oludeniz. White sandy beaches are a perfect spot to lounge in the sun.
Sometimes the beach can become stuffy. You can resort to paragliding then. Jump off the dense cliffs of mountain and experience the stunning view. Under you is dark blue water and green mountains rise around you. Above you is the never ending sky. In that moment of awe, you will experience all elements of nature.
EXPERIENCE THE GRECO-ROMAN
We had mentioned earlier that Turkey has many pieces of evidence of Greek and Roman history. You can roam around the nation and find the traces of past. One such example is Pergamum. In its days it used to be a library. But now its ruins are in parallel with that of Colosseum.
Built during the period of Marcus Aurelius Aspendos still, has the power to leave you breathless. It is a Roman theater. Many tourists folk here to have a look at it. You will be taken to Greece for a short time while you are in these locations.
CRUISE ON A YATCH
Are you terrestrial? Of course, you are! But many of us are water fans. For them, water is a wild mistress whom you cannot tame. If you are one of them, please don’t forget Bodrum. It is the place where you can soak in the sun on a lovely beach. You can take a cruise on Mediterranean waters.
A HOT AIR BALLOON RIDE IN CAPPADOCIA
The rays of sun bathe the city in a golden hue. The rock structures seem like golden statue which come to life. Cappadocia is a place where you have a lot to do. You can click breathtaking pictures of the monuments. Rock Structures are from the byzantine period. From tall cliffs to deep ridges everything is made from rock.