Burial Ruins, thermal pools and a visit to Grandma

Trip Start Sep 19, 2010
Trip End Oct 25, 2010

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Flag of Turkey  , Denizli,
Tuesday, October 19, 2010

This has been a very interesting day.  From swimming in the hot pool in the morning before leaving to the beautiful sites of Hierapolis and Pamukkale which are just beside each other and finally a visit to Faruk's Grandmother and Aunt.   

Faruk had told me that his Grandmother lived in the area and started to joke that we were going there for lunch.  That day we were late and he started talking about stopping at a restaurant for lunch.  I jokingly said isn't Gramma close and he said yes he had talked to her the night before and I asked him if he had told her he was coming and when he admitted he had, I said we could not disappoint her and we should drive for another hour for lunch.  Well it was one of the most interesting and wonderful experiences.  I cannot explain a typical, extremely clean old Turkish House with a Herb garden in the front, tangerine and other fruit trees in the back.  They never wear their shoes indoors.  I was given lunch on a table since I could not possibly sit on the floor but the bus driver, Faruk, Grandma and his Aunt all sat around a spread out cloth with the cloth pulled over their knees and we ate soup and fresh bread and vegetable stew with watermelon after.   It was absolutely delicious and his grandmother talked a blue streak and Faruk said she was worried about his driving all over the countryside.  His aunt just smiled and did not say a word.  When he was out of the room picking tangerines his grandmother sat on the floor with her legs crossed clutched my hand and looked at me with the most piercing eyes telling me something that I could not understand.   She is obviously a wonderful person and sure loves Faruk.

Today we saw:

PAMUKKALE (also known as Hierapolis)

Pamukkale is one of the natural wonders of the world. It is a unique geological formation formed over 14.000 years. The spring water at Pamukkale has therapeutic qualities and since antiquity has been said to cure rheumatism, kidney and heart diseases.

Hierapolis, means sacred-city and its history goes back 6th C BC. At its peak the population reached about 100,000. The ruins at Hierapolis cover an extensive area. 

The theater, Temple of Apollo, Colonnaded Street, Byzantine Gate, Plutonium and Necropolis (Cemetery) are some of the highlights of the city. The Necropolis has approximately 1000 tombs and is the largest in Asia MinorToday, Hierapolis is a World Heritage Site and popular tourist destination.  The name of the city may derive from Hiera, the wife of Telephus (son of Hercules and grandson of Zeus), the mythical founder of Pergamum. Or it may have been called the "sacred city" because of the temples located at the site. (The name Pamukkale is sometimes used just to refer to the white terraces, but the modern name of the whole area is also Pamukkale.)With Colossae and Laodicea, Hierapolis became part of the tri-city area of the Lycus River valley. Hierapolis was located across the river from the other two cities and was noted for its textiles, especially wool. The city was also famous for its purple dye, made from the juice of the madder root.The hot springs at Hierapolis (which still attract visitors today) were believed to have healing properties, and people came to the city to bathe in the rich mineral waters in order to cure various ailments.
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