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Valens Aqueduct, Istanbul

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#29 of 141 in Historic Sites in Istanbul
Ruin Historic Site
The Valens Aqueduct is a Roman aqueduct which was the major water-providing system of the Eastern Roman capital of Constantinople . Completed by Roman Emperor Valens in the late 4th century AD, it was maintained and used by the Byzantines and later the Ottomans, and remains one of the most important landmarks of the city.Bridge section locationThe most visible bridge section of the aqueduct stands in Istanbul, in the quarter of Fatih, and spans the valley between the hills occupied today by the Istanbul University and the Fatih Mosque. The surviving section is 921 metres long, about 50 metres less than the original length. The Atatürk Bulvarı boulevard passes under its arches.HistoryRoman periodThe construction of a water supply system for the city had begun already under the Roman emperor Hadrian. Under Constantine I, when the city was rebuilt and increased in size, the system needed to be greatly expanded to meet the needs of the rapidly growing population.The Valens aqueduct, which originally got its water from the slopes of the hills between Kağıthane and the Sea of Marmara, was merely one of the terminal points of this new wide system of aqueducts and canals – which eventually reached over 250km in total length, the longest such system of Antiquity – that stretched throughout the hill-country of Thrace and provided the capital with water. Once in the city, the water was stored in three open reservoirs and over a hundred underground cisterns, such as the Basilica Cistern, with a combined capacity of over 1 million cubic meters.
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  • The remaining part of the main aqueduct of Byzantine times. You can see it best, while you travel around the city by taxi.  more »
  • Built as part of a 200 mile system to supply water to the city, this is an impressive sight, with modern day roads running through it, there are good views from both sides and a nice park on the city ...  more »
  • İstanbul'un en eski su kemeri olan Bozdoğan Kemeri 19. yüzyıl sonlarına kadar kente su taşımayı sürdürmüştür. / Valens Aqueduct, which is the oldest aqueduct in Istanbul, continued to supply water for...  more »

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The bustling downtown core of old Istanbul is the popular choice among tourists wanting a short walking distance to the city's biggest attractions. Here you'll find hostel-style accommodations and reasonably priced and traditionally decorated hotels, as well as bed and breakfasts and inns with views overlooking the sea. Though often the most affordable, accommodations in the old city can be very overrun with tourists and street solicitors. If you seek a more relaxed stay, consider lodging near Taksim Square. This new, trendy neighborhood is a short 15-20 minute ride from the old city, but puts you closer to restaurants, shopping, and nightlife. Though the newer area of the city is a bit more upscale, you'll also find moderately priced hotels and some hostels. Look for luxury hotels in the western suburbs close to the airport, overlooking the banks of Bosphorus.
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