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Pamukkale Travertine Terraces
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Pamukkale / Hierapolis
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Hierapolis Byzantine Church A very special highlight of our vacation was a trip to Hierapolis / Pamukkale.
This tourist spot is a marvellous natural site, unique in the world as well as
a fascinating archaeological site with unusual well preserved ancient ruins.

Picture to the left: Byzantine church



Pamukkale Travertine Terraces - UNESCO World HeritageThe travertine terraces at Pamukkale are one of the most spectacular natural wonders we ever have seen From various mineral springs in  a vast white cliff side, about 200 m overlooking the plain, calcite-laden waters have dripped down over a series of terraced levels and created a fairyland of  bizarre solidified cascades and shell-shaped basins. It looks like creations from snow or like balls from cotton, which gave the scenery the Turkish name Pamukkale - "cottoncasle)" (“pamuk” for cotton and “kale” for castle). Moreover the water in the basins is changing its colour accordingly to the incidence of light.

Pamukkale Travertine Terraces - 1
Pamukkale Travertine Terraces - 2
Pamukkale Travertine Terraces - 3
Pamukkale Travertine Terraces - 4

The pictures above were taken in 1991, when it still was permitted, to swim in the basins as people have done since ancient times. However mass tourism and the contamination of the water with chemical products, in particular by hotels, built above, that used the spring water before it flooded the terraces, caused heavy damages. So something had to be done, to save this wonder of nature.

The hotels were removed and are now located below the terraces. Pamukkale travertine terrases (picture from pixabay)Broken basins were repaired and there, where once a street was built across the terraces, several artificial basins were implemented, which after years of flooding will have a natural look. pamukkale ancient poolThis is the part, that can be entered by tourists - barefoot.

However, there is an "Antique Pool" with view of the ancient amphitheatre and the white Terraces, where you can enjoy swimming in the pleasant warm mineral water surrounded by palm trees, pines, cypresses and oleanders and relax on fragments of antique works from marble .

 

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