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Published: April 28th 2015
To walk in the water from the Pamukkale hot spring is a sweet luxury
The first half of this trip I, Ake, spent visiting various ancient sites
in the southeast of Turkey. But there was one more thing I wanted to see while being in this part of Turkey and that was Pamukkale. Pamukkale is a place I bypassed when I travelled in Turkey many years ago. Since then I have been thinking about going there many times but haven't found time to until now. It took me twenty years of planning to make it to Pamukkale but finally I have.
You might argue that Pamukkale is two sites, not one. The famous one of these two being Pamukkale with its white terraces. The other site, being the less famous one, is Hierapolis which is the ruined remains of an ancient Greek city.
At Pamukkale there are several natural hot springs. The water which flows from these springs is rich in minerals. The water from the wells has over thousands of years formed thick layers of mineral deposits along a cliff face and today the cliff is white as a chalk and actually looks like a
At Pamukkale there are several natural hot springs. The water which flows from these springs is rich in minerals. The water from the wells has over thousands of years formed thick layers of mineral deposits along a cliff face and today the cliff is white as a chalk
huge frozen waterfall. Pamukkale is a truly iconic site. I have seen more than one movie where they have used Pamukkale as a backdrop for a scene or two.
The Greek city Hierapolis, today an impressive ruin site, was located right next to Pamukkale. It is a great location for a city, next to the hot springs, so I completely understand the Greeks. I would also like to have a hot spring a hundred meters or so from where I live.
The Hierapolis site stretches over a large area and I actually didn't have time to see it all. But Greek ruins I have seen before so I don't feel bad about that. Once you have seen a couple of ruins they all start looking the same.
Pamukkale and Hierapolis is by the way a UNESCO World Heritage Site. That means that there are historical values to the site as well and not only aesthetic values. Although it was the fact that it looked so damned cool that made me want to go there in the first place.
In the parts of Hierapolis I had time to visit
With all the white mineral deposits you have to work hard to get some colour in the pictures
the most interesting constructions were the amphitheatre and the tomb of the Apostle Philip. Please don't ask me how they can know for sure that one of the Apostles was buried in that particular tomb in Hierapolis. I suppose they have some kind of trustworthy source to confirm that. Because they don't just make things like that up, do they? But now that I think about it I clearly remember seeing the staff of Moses, the one he used when he parted the Red Sea, in a museum in Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. No way that staff was the real deal, it looked way too new. If they in Turkey can fake a relic like that perhaps it is permitted to be a bit sceptcial here too.
This was all I had to say from this short trip. However, I really hope I will have the chance to return to Turkey in the future because it is a country I like very much and there are still many intereting places there I have not visited and several of the sites I have been to before I'd love to go to again.
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