Hierapolis (Pamukkale)


pamukkale  photo by miss ohara flicker/creativecommons 2.0 / shaunscrackedcompass.com – standing on travertine.

We are visiting the archeological biblical site of Hierapolis, also known as Pamukkale (cotton castle in Turkish) It is famous for its hot springs and travertines (terraces of carbonate minerals left by flowing waters). It was included in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. Pamukkale’s travertine terraces, with their circular basins filled with cloudy, turquoise waters, that flow down the hillside above the modern village of Denizli. For preservation, the water from the 17 hot springs no longer runs through the terraces.  The hot springs have been used as a spa and a healing center since at least the 2nd century BC when doctors used the thermal springs to treat their patients. The necropolis (cemetery), with its large number of tombs, is evidence of many patrons retiring or dying there.


Through the influence of the apostle Paul, a church was founded here while he was at Ephesus. The tomb of the martyred Christian apostle Philip is here. He died either by hanging, crucifixion, or beheading, depending on your source.

In the massive archeological remains, we will visit one of the best reconstructed Roman theaters in Turkey (see Colossians 4:13-15)  

Hieropolis theater by Beth M527 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

Hot springs pool by Anita363 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

Hieropolis cemetery by Beth M527 is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.