View from the top of Old Man of Coniston hike in Lake District National Park, England.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Preston, Lancashire, England.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Wyke, West Yorkshire, England on May 29th!

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Pamukkale Part Two - The ruins of Hieropolis and Laodicea

This is the second blog post today... if you missed the first one, you should really read it before this one...

So yesterday we went to the calcium pools at Pamukkale. But at the same location, and included in your ticket price, is the ancient city of Hieropolis.  To us, it makes sense to explore both, but it seemed that most people were only interested in the water and the calcium formations. 

And when we bought our tickets, we also paid the extra 20 lira ($3.20 CAD, $2.45 USD) for the combined entrance to the pools, Hieropolis, and the ancient city of Laodicea since it was on the way back home anyhow.

The hot springs of Pamukkale have been used as a spa since 200 BC. And I'm sure that's why the city grew in that area to begin with. Hieropolis has one of the largest and best preserved necropolis (cemetery) in Turkey. Because the healing properties of the water were well known, it is believed that many older people retired to Hieropolis and of course eventually died anyhow. Maybe one of the reasons for the extra large cemetery?!

The theater is in pretty good condition!

Ruins everywhere.

Many channels were built to funnel the water.

Ruth, at the theater.

This theater seats 15,000.

The stage was closed off, so I couldn't get down there to do my Julius Caesar impression!

These houses date to the 11th century.

An archeologists impression of what the city would have looked like.

There is a small museum on site showing off some of the better finds here.

Remains of the Roman bath house.

Main Street.
And it really was the main street in the city. 

Can you guess what this building was?
The latrine!

Here is an artist's depiction of what the latrine would have been like.
Not a lot of modesty in those days for while you're doing your business!

The main entrance gate to the city.

It's all Greek to me.

On the outskirts of town, outside the main gate was the cemetery. Hundreds of huge rock tombs.

The Hieropolis ancient cemetery.


The Cursed Tomb.

On the façade of the Cursed Tomb is an inscription that describes the punishment that will be inflicted upon anyone who violates the tomb. As well as the usual fines, it invokes "diseases, misfortunes, and punishments in the next world". 

It was almost 1:45pm at this point, and we still had to get back to the car. But there was no easy way to do that! We could either walk all the way back to the top of the pools and then down the calcium walkway... or walk on the road. We chose the road because it was probably faster. It was only about 4 kms (2.5 miles) and it was downhill all the way.

Back at the car, our feet were about done. We had already put on 12 kms (7.4 miles) and we still wanted to see Laodicea on the way home.

So that's what we did.

Loadicea is a kind of a different site. Again, we were pretty much the only ones there. It's a huge site, and not really very attractive. There are no trees or greenery. 

There is a lot of archeological stuff going on here.

Including three big cranes.

Do you see any other tourists?
No. I think we only saw one other couple.

They are rebuilding the theater.

How did they move the big blocks back in the day?

Rocks that are all classified and numbered.

Apparently this was all rubble.
A massive earthquake in 640 AD totally levelled the city.

We would have liked to see more, but we were running out of ambition! We drove home and bought a bottle of wine and a roast chicken and put our feet up! We had done 15 kms (9.3 miles)!

Both sites are worth a visit if you are at all interested in this stuff. We probably didn't do Laodicea justice because we were tired. And in fact, if you want to see everything at Pamukkale and Hieropolis, that's a full day in itself. Now you can see why we split it up into two blog posts!

Tomorrow (Wednesday) we are headed back to the coast for a one week stay in Güzelçamlı.

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Total distance walked in Turkey 202.6 kms (125.6 miles).


  1. We love every post of your Turkey excursion! Your photos and descriptions refresh our memories for some of the areas that we saw some years ago, and show us also those areas we missed! Turkey is one of our favorite countries to visit and your posts show what a gem it is.

    1. We are so glad to hear that you are really enjoying our posts. It is nice that we are able to refresh some of those wonderful memories of your visit for you and hopefully entice you to return to see more of what Turkey has to offer. :-)

  2. I am truly amazed how interesting Turkey is. The calcium so wide spread, looks wonderful. Your pictures make us feel as if we are with you. Thank you so m much for the effort.

    1. We are finding Turkey to be just as interesting as Mexico is to us. In many ways it reminds us very much of Mexico and in other ways it is so different, I think that is one of the many reasons why we are enjoying ourselves here so much.

      We are so happy that you are enjoying our posts and our pictures. :-)

  3. Yes, thank you!!! That is just awesome!

    1. Thank you! We are glad that you have enjoying our posts so much. :-)

  4. What a cool place! The houses are incredible. I can only imagine the stories they could tell. That's houw you build a house!

    1. It was a pretty neat spot both with the travertine pools and the old ruins. As we were wandering through the site, we were trying to imagine what it would have been like to have lived back then and who else from history that we have read about walked along these same streets/roads/stones. Totally amazing!

  5. Thank you for all your work on these posts. Ill never get there so I am really enjoying your blog. Beautiful photos. And the Lady with the parrot was stunning!

    1. You are welcome and we are glad that you are so appreciative of our posts. It does take a lot of work but it is also work that we enjoy. :-)

      We are looking forward to showing you many more posts and pictures as we explore more of Turkey.

  6. I just adore learning about Turkey. In High School, I did not care for European History, silly me. I would definitely like to visit Turkey someday. It is amazing so far.

    1. We have both talked to each other as we have walked through some of these ruins sites and said how history was boring in school and that neither one of us enjoyed it but to come here and walk around and take it all in, is something else. We are learning so much more and it is so much more interesting this way. Not sure if it is because of our age or because we are actually seeing history right before our eyes, perhaps it is a combination of both. Whatever it is, we are liking it and learning so much. Our decision to come to Turkey was definitely the right choice. :-)

  7. Another great post!That's amazing 15 thousand, they obviously loved theater! Rawn Stone

    1. Thank you, we are glad that you are enjoying our posts! :-)

      Yeah, 15,000 people! I wonder how often the seats were totally full?!

    2. Can you imagine people at the top trying to hear?

    3. They were built in such a way that the sound travels very easily so they would not have an issue at all hearing from way up at the top.

  8. Another fantastic post! I echo and concur with all the accolades from your other readers .....THANK YOU for making a great effort to show the pictures and the narratives. Excellent! More power to you and safe travels.

    1. Thank you and you are welcome, it is our pleasure, Lynnette. :-)

      We are just so happy that everyone seems to be really enjoying our adventures here in Turkey.


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