Turkey (Pamukkale)

View from the street outside my hotel on the first morning.

Sacks of cotton(pamuk) across the street.

The two little guys that helped me realize that the "pamuk" in Pamukkale was cotton! The "kale" refers to castle.  The younger one was much more tolerant of my ignorance of Turkish.

An iron stained version of the cotton castles that give the area the name. The iron is likely from the iron pipes that supply the hot water that is pumped from depths of about 6000 feet to keep this feature and its' mini terraces alive. A local hotel has created its' own version of the same type of thing(a concept that seems to be alive in the area...why not improve on the natural?).

Some of the calcium carbonate terracing that spreads off of the site of a Roman spa (including baths that it is said Cleopatra "swum" here, currently a hotel where you can swim in the lukewarm water as well)that obviously took advantage of and manipulated the natural resource here.

A vast aqueduct system was constructed by the Romans and another is now maintained by the current generation to keep the cotton castles alive. A very elaborate process of diversion is attempting to keep the cotton castles white and there is a big difference between the summer and winter.  During the winter many of the terrace pools are dry and now off limits to people...although there are many postcards left over from the past that give tourists a quite different impression.

Others try to keep the wolves away by selling supposedly original relics to tourists (Roman coins here, I was also offered small sculptures that looked suspiciously like some in the stores but beat up a bit.  I certainly avoided it since Turkey makes it very clear that taking antiquities out of the country is a no-no.)

The bedrock is a schist and has been used in the ruin walls as well.

The ruins are interesting and the efforts of humans to keep a tourist attraction alive are of some interest but if you want to see a natural example, spend your money and go to Mammoth in Yellowstone.  It is a lot cheaper to travel in Turkey however!

On to Ephesus, Turkey