Pamukkale and Laodicea

Pamukkale which is translated as Cotton Castle in Turkish, is famous for it’s terraces filled with natural spring water located on a mountainside.

It’s formed as hot spring water containing high quantities of calcium hydrogen carbonate runs over the surface of the ground and loses heat, thus an irreversible reaction occurs causing carbon dioxide, water and calcium carbonate to be produced. The calcium carbonate precipitated from this reaction is what gives the terraces a soft white colour. And if you walk along the terraces (shoes are not allowed) there will indeed be soft white powder sticking to your feet. This is an extremely alien looking landscape, and it’s no surprise that Unesco has taken it under it’s wing to protect the site.

2014-04-09 05.26.37

2014-04-09 05.27.16

This is a better angle of the shelves taken from Google - when I went the shelves weren't all full of water.

This is a better angle of the shelves taken from Google – when I went the shelves weren’t all full of water.

Hierapolis is the ancient city right outside Pamukkale. Main attractions consist of a theatre that can fit 15,000 spectators, a large Christian church of St Philip which includes his tomb (but the location is currently still under archaeological excavation), where he was martryed in 80 A.D.

A panorama of the theatre. It has very well restored marble Roman statues on an equally beautiful marble stage.

A panorama of the theatre. It has very well restored marble Roman statues on an equally beautiful marble stage.

The Martyrion of St Philip. There is a small, white triangular roof seen from the side - that's the entrance to the tomb of St Philip.

The Martyrion of St Philip. There is a small, white triangular roof seen from the side – that’s the entrance to the tomb of St Philip.

Laodicea is about 20 minutes away from Pamukkale, and it boasts 2 theatres, a stadium, and a water distribution tower. It’s a huge city because it was at the junction of the Silk Road and another major trading route, thus it was extremely wealthy. Mosaics have recently been discovered in the Bishop’s house, and soon after restoration it will be opened to the public, but nobody really knows when.

This is what remains of a stadium, capable of seating maybe a 100,000 people.

This is what remains of a stadium, capable of seating maybe a 100,000 people.

A water distributiom tower.

A water distributiom tower. You can see the pipes that were used to transport water from the Hierapolis hot springs, because Laodicea had no water supply of it’s own.

These are close-ups of ORIGINAL Roman clay pipes used to transport water - they looked so modern we doubted the tour guide.

These are close-ups of ORIGINAL Roman clay pipes used to transport water – they looked so modern we doubted the tour guide.

This is an extremely rare symbol - there's only one in Turkey. It shows a Jewish menorah with a cross carved on top of it. A horn has also been carved to the side of the menorah. What this means is that something important happened herr because it was carved into a pillar at the forum - a Jewish royal was converted to Christianity.

This is an extremely rare symbol – there’s only one in Turkey. It shows a Jewish menorah with a cross carved on top of it. A horn has also been carved to the side of the menorah, which means that something important happened here because it was carved into a pillar at the forum – a Jewish royal was converted to Christianity.

The main road of Laodicea.

The main road of Laodicea.

It’s amazing how the Romans could create such wonderful works of art that were their city. The pictures do not do the ancient cities justice at all! Oh I wish you could all come here to experience what I have. I will never forget this! I hope you found it informative, and I will continue to share more with you. As for now, ta-ta! 😀

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s