This small and attractive tower is on a tiny island at the entrance to Istanbul's harbor. The tower is considered as one of the most romantic symbols of Istanbul. The first tower was constructed in the 12th century, used as a watchtower and a lighthouse, it has been preserved in its 19th Century appearance. It serves as a landmark for ships entering the Bosphorus and will be used for touristic purposes.
Western sources have erroneously attributed the tower to Leander, who drowned as he was trying to swim to his lover Hero. Actually, this mythological story took place in the Dardanelles.
According to another story, an emperor once dreamt that his daughter was going to die because of a snake bite and settled the girl in this tower to ensure her safety. Nevertheless, the tragedy could not be averted and the girl was bitten by a snake hidden in a fruit basket.