Pamukkale ( Cotton Castle)

Pamukkale (in Turkish) means “Cotton Castle”. Pamukkale is the name of a natural site in the Turkish province of Denizli. This amazing natural site located in Turkey’s Aegean midland region among the valley of River Menderes, has hot springs and travertine terraces made of carbonate minerals left over by flowing volcanic spring waters since thousands of years. The region has a temperate climate for most part of the year and hence attracts tourists all the year round. The nearest major urban area is Denizli, which is just a 20-minute drive away from here.

There are 17 hot water springs in this area in which the water temperatures range in between 35 °C and 100 °C. The hot water emerging from these springs are supersaturated with calcium carbonate. As the water cascades through, the calcium carbonate in it is deposited on rocks eventually to form travertine terraces. The deposit is soft initially but gradually hardens to form travertine.

Travertines

Pamukkale’s travertine terraces are made of sedimentary rock formations deposited by water flowing from the hot springs here. The hot waters derive from Cal Mountain’s springs and flow from a 200 m high cliff overlooking the plains. The calcite rich waters have created here an unreal landscape, petrified waterfalls and terraced basins make the area an out-of-this world place.

Archeological evidences reveal that the Pergamum kings had set up a thermal spa in the ancient city site of Hierapolis during the 2nd century BC. The ruins of the Greek and Roman monuments, including temples and the baths can be seen at this place. These evidences prove that millions of people have bathed in these hot springs since thousands of years!

This place has been declared a World Heritage Site in 1988 and tourism has been a major industry even before that. From the year 1997, walking with shoes in these semi-circle calcite-rich pools was forbidden to preserve the pristine white color and avoid any crushing or damaging of them. However, you are allowed to walk naked foot across the travertine on the southern part.

Pamukkale is not just famous for its natural travertine, but also as a place that has waters with healing powers. The waters from the hot springs in Pamukkale are believed to have a beautifying power in addition to curing effects. These mineral rich hot waters can cure skin diseases and various other chronic disorders. Pamukkale, which has become a spa resort in the modern world, was also a center of pagan cult in the ancient times and also played an important role during Christianity.

How to go from Marmaris To Pamukkale

The distance between Marmaris to Pamukkale is 210 km , it will take a drive around 3 hours from Marmaris to Pamukkale. The easiest way to Pamukkale is the day trip from Marmaris , you can also consider 2 days tour Ephesus & Pamukkale aswell.

 

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