MAIDENS' TOWER

IN USKUDAR

Also known as Leander’s Tower as well as Kız Kulesi in Turkish. There are many legendary stories about the tower, and the most popular one is; there was a king, and the king had a beloved daughter. The monks told the king that a snake would bite his daughter on her 18th birthday.

Then the king built the tower so that his daughter would be far away from the land and avoid the snake. But the prophecy did not stop following. One day, the servants brought some grapes with baskets, and a snake was lurking among the grapes. Finally, the snake bites her.

This ancient tower stands on a rocky outcrop at the entrance to the Bosphorus just offshore Uskudar. It is presently used as a lighthouse. The original tower was built in the 12th century by the Byzantine Emperor Manuel Comnenos (1143-1180), who aimed to find a firm foundation for the chain they used to close the Bosphorus to sea traffic. Today, Maiden’s Tower is one the most popular restaurants in Istanbul. The Maiden’s Tower can be better seen from the Bosphorus.

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