Spend a Day in Pamukkale, Turkey

Spending a day in a place outside your country can be a little difficult especially when it’s loaded with tourist attractions and you want to visit them all. I mean, why not? It probably took some major planning and a lot of money spending to get yourself in that place and, chances are, it will take you years to come back or never at all.

So, it’s like, make the most of the day! Or something along the line.

In Pamukkale, however, staying for a day isn’t so bad. You can visit most, if not all, of the top tourist attractions and you’ll be leaving satisfied.

That is if we assume that you only intend to sight see and do nothing else but take pictures of everything. But, if you plan to experience more of the place, staying in the town for 2 days is good enough.

When I visited on February, it was winter. It wasn’t too cold and, at around noon, it got warm. I had two layers of clothes and that’s about it. There were less tourists (almost none) so you can imagine how much I enjoyed going around as if I own the place.

I definitely did the right thing of visiting the place on winter! I was able to take pictures without worrying about photo-bombers and I didn’t have to wait for a crowd to leave in order to see what I wanted to see. Heh, #shortieproblems.

The experience I had in Pamukkale was definitely worth the 10 hours bus ride I had from Cappadocia!

Alright, I’ll stop rambling now. I don’t really want to bore you.

If you’re curious and, would like to know what I did and visited in Pamukkale, continue reading!

Visit Karahayit Hot Springs

Soak your feet in the hot waters of Karahayit hot springs and take your time to relax while enjoying a peaceful, quiet time. You can also try to reach out where the source of water is coming from and drink it. It is a good way to take a break from the road and slow down for a bit.

Because of the minerals found in the hot water, you’ll notice that the rock where the water passes vary in color.


A word of advice: you have to make sure that the water you’re going to take from the spring is drinkable. I almost made a mistake of taking water from the pool with tadpoles in it. Lmao! I wasn’t looking properly.

If you have the time and are staying in Pamukkale longer, try the mud baths. It is said that the water from the hot spring is good for the skin and cures aching bones, muscles, and veins.

Karahayit Hot Spring

Wander around Hierapolis

Hierapolis, “sacred city” in ancient Greek, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located above the white calcium travertines of Pamukkale. Explore the ancient Greco-Roman city and hike around to discover its ruins.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset
Remains of a fountain.

Since I only had a day to wander around Hierapolis, I was only able to see the following:

City Ruins

Once you enter the Hierapolis, you will see numerous blocks scattered in the area. Obviously, the scattered blocks are the remnants of the structures which once stood there. In the city ruins, you’ll find two structures next to each other: the Temple of Apollo which was dedicated to the Greek sun god  Apollo and the Plutonium, a shrine for the Roman god Pluto. (Fun fact: Hades is Pluto’s counterpart in Greek mythology)

Plutonium or Pluto’s gate is where you’ll find a cave where water passes rapidly while emitting a thick layer of suffocating gas. In other words, you’ll die from inhaling it.

When you stand next to the cave, you’ll definitely hear the flow of water from behind. You don’t have to worry about dying from some gas though since the cave has been sealed off centuries ago. Hooray for seals!

heirapolis ruins
Ruins of the Nymphaeum (Monumental Fountain). Temple of Apollo can be seen at the back.

You’ll also be able to find the ruins of ancient agoras, the nymphaeum, necropolis, and Apostle Philip’s church inside the Hierapolis.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset
Apostle Philip’s church is on top of this hill.

Hierapolis Amphitheater

The amphitheather is being restored well. You can see how the structure looked like from the ancient times which allows you to better imagine how the people gathered in it. It is believed to have a seating capacity of 15,000 with 45 rows; upper and lower part altogether.

I’m not really sure if you can enter the theater from below but you can enter it at the top after hiking the side of the hill. You can also step down the stone seats to get a nice photo op.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset
The ruins of Hierapolis amphitheather

Antique Pool (Cleopatra’s Pool)

Now, I’m not really sure why it’s called Cleopatra’s pool. I asked one of the locals if Cleopatra actually came to this pool but she said that Cleopatra didn’t. Now that I think about it, maybe it was called Cleopatra’s pool because the water does wonders to one’s body. See what I mean? Cleopatra is a beauty and the water makes you feel good and beautiful. There’s a connection there, people! But then again, don’t take me seriously. It’s just a random thought.

Cleopatra’s pool is filled with rubble from the columns of the ancient times. The pool was actually formed by the earthquake which happened in AD 7th century. And, you know what’s great? You can swim in it!

Cleopatra’s Pool

The water in the pool is thermal so you can swim in it all year round. It is said that the pool’s water is good for some diseases and ailments. So, when you do get the time and chance, don’t miss out on swimming in it.

I mean, getting the benefits of the water is one thing but, come on! How cool is it to swim in a pool with ancient stuff in it? Bathe like how the Romans did!

Walk on the Travertines

Pamukkale, meaning “cotton castle” in Turkish, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is located right next to the Hierapolis.

Pamukkale’s color is white. At first glance, it looks as if the place is covered with snow. If you look at it longer, you’ll notice that it’s appearance looks like cotton but, of course, it is far from being fluffy.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset

Similar to the spring and pool which we previously mentioned, Pamukkale travertine’s water is also thermal. Great, isn’t it? You can still walk on it even when it’s winter!

In order to walk around the travertines, you have to be barefooted. It’s actually a nice experience as you get to feel the texture of it’s surface beneath your feet. It also enables you to dip your feet in the water canal while you sit and enjoy the panoramic view below you.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset
Pamukkale travertine terraces

Paraglide above Pamukkale

If it’s in your bucket list, don’t miss paragliding over Pamukkale and see the white calcium travertines from above!

Do I really need to say more?

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset

Chill at the Natural Park

You can spend some time watching the ducks, riding the small boats, and/or looking at the calm water at the natural park while snacking on something you bought from the store.

The natural park is located at the foot of Pamukkale.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset
Whites and blues at the natural park


  1. If you’re planning to swim in Cleopatra’s pool, you have to know the following:
    • If you’re on a tour, inform your tour guide about your plan so they can let you swim in the pool for an hour.
    • A fee of 32TL is charged in order to swim in the pool
    • Towels are not available so bring your own
    • Pool is accessible all throughout the year
    • Lockers are available with extra fee
  2. Be careful when you walk on the travertines, the areas where the water isn’t moving is slippery.
  3. If you’re coming from above (from Hierapolis), make your way below the cotton castle. Don’t miss out on the beautiful travertine terraces which can be found somewhere in the lower part of the area.

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 )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ 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 )


Connecting to %s