Pamukkale and Hierapolis

Pamukkale, literally meaning “The Cotton Fort” in Turkish, lies by the headwaters of Meander River. Here, calcium-charged thermal waters have created a breath-taking ‘fortress’ by their deposits on cliffs overlooking Meander Valley. These cascading white pools are among the rarest natural wonders of the world. While the head-spring still remains a mystery, the forthcoming waters are at almost body-temperature when they reach the edge of the natural platform and start discharging their calcium, to accumulate and form multiple semi-circular cliff pools. The visual effect is surreal, to say the least.

Right next to Pamukkale are the remains of the ancient city of Hierapolis. Excavations in recent years have brought to light the magnificence of Hierapolitan streets, Walls, fountains, temples, bathhouses, theaters and the most extensive ‘Necropolis’ (ancient cemetery of sarcophagi) in Asia Minor from classical antiquity. Within a short drive are even more incredible ancient cities including Aphrodisias and Laodecia, as well as the Biblical Collossae.


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