Today We Visited the Snow in Summer!

Trip Start Jun 21, 2012
Trip End Jul 11, 2012

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Flag of Turkey  , Denizli,
Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Our earliest start so far - we were all on the bus ready to go at 8am today. First stop was at Thyatira, where there are a mixture of older and newer ruins to see. There was also a turtle and yet another cat. Our next stop was at Sardis, where there is an extensive restoration of a Roman bath and gymnasium, all done using the original materials. The entrance is an impressive sight - very high with 2 levels of columns and marble. It was hard to photograph in a way that showed the shear magnitude of the structure. There was a stage being assembled in front for a concert - probably to happen this weekend, I guess, although I have no idea what it might be. In the same complex as the bath-house is a street of shops, with a restaurant, hardware store, etc. At least that's what they would have been about 1700 years ago or thereabouts! There was also a Jewish Synagogue right next to the bath-house. It's interesting the Romans and Jews tolerated each other enough to be in such close proximity.

Our final visit for the day before the hotel was to Pamukkale, an area of pools created from calcium deposits leached out from under the ground. It looked just like snow, both from a distance and close up, although the temperature was in the mid to high 30's. There are ruins here as well - Hierapolis, a site mentioned only once briefly in the bible. We didn't get enough time to see the whole site, so Mel and I went for a walk on the calcium snow field (we had to take our shoes off first) and then had a look at Cleopatra's Pool, which looked a lot like a resort pool. Under the water were sections of fallen marble columns, although the deck chairs around the edge detracted from the overall effect!

Our hotel tonight is in Pamukkale as well, and has thermal pools to swim in. Unfortunately yet again we have to leave early tomorrow morning, so we'll miss out on swimming in them (many of the group went swimming before and after dinner tonight, but we're too tired!)
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