27.08.2009 - 27.08.2009 30 °C
On the way to Pamukkale we stopped at Aphrodisias[/b which is another ancient city]. It is 30 kilometers from the town of Denizli in South Eastern Turkey. During 1st to 6th centuries AD, Aphrodisias became a rich and important city. It was a thriving trade center and also known for its school of marble sculptors. Paganism still lingered for some centuries at Aphrodisias because of the great popularity of the cult of the goddess regardless of the advancement of Christianity. Here we saw the various ruins: Tetrapylon (2nd century gateway), the stadium which was amazing as it could seat 30,000 spectators, temple of aphrodite and the theatre which is accessed by climbing up a hill. After a wonder round we looked in the museum which housed marble sculptures.
We went for lunch at a nearby village before heading to [b]Pamukkale. The scenery en route was beautiful as we travelled through the fertile region. We arrived at Pamukkale mid afternoon where we had 2 hours to enjoy this national site. Pamukkale, means "cotton castle" in Turkish and the ancient city of Hierapolis was built on top of the white "castle" which is in total about 2,700 metres (8,900 ft) long and 160 metres (520 ft) high.
The 'castle's are formed when water from the hot springs loses carbon dioxide as it flows down the slopes, leaving deposits of limestone behind. The layers of of white calcium carbonate build up in steps on the plateau. Visitors are not allowed to walk in there but can do on the man-made ones which we did.
The thermal springs at Hierapolis made the city a popular spa in Hellenistic times.
After some time here, we made our way to the Herakles Thermal Hotel where you can have your own thermal water on tap in your bath or in the thermal pool outside. It was a lovely hotel and in the evening there is a local market with all sorts of goods ranging from embroidered stuff to jewellery. The Denizili area is known for its textiles.