Saturday, March 01, 2014

Pamukkale - Konya, Turkiye

Wed, 29/1/14

Pamukkale – Konya 

Journey today:
Pamukkale - Dinar : 119km (1 hr 25 mins)
Dinar - Dinlenme Tesisleri (Kirazli Bahce): 131km (1 hr 40 mins)
Dinlenme Tesisleri - Konya : 154 km (1 hr 52 mins)
Konya - Sultanhani: 107km (1 hr 20 mins)
Sultanhani - Uygup, Cappadocia region: 138km (1 hr 44 mins)
Total journey: 650km (8 hrs 6 mins)
This is the furthest of our journey in Turkiye

Pamukkale - Dinar - Konya - Sultanhani - Urgup, Cappadocia

Rise and shine at 5.30am, then we had buffet styled breakfast and check out at 7.30am. Our first destination today was Pamukkale / Hierapolis, a Unesco World Heritage site listed under #485 Hierapolis - Pamukkale which was just about 10 mins from our hotel. Since we arrived after dark yesterday, we only could see the breathtaking view of the white terraced landscape today.

From wikipedia: Pamukkale, means "cotton castle" in Turkish. Pamukkale's terraces are made of calcium carbonate which is deposited by the water as a soft jelly twhich eventually hardens into terraces called travertine. The hot water spring temperature ranges from 35 °C to 100 °C The underground volcanic activity causes the hot springs. Pamukkale's size is diminishing with time

Terraces of Pamukkale

Pamukkale pools
let's swim!

Next to the white pool terraces of Pamukkale lies the ancient ruins of Hierapolis which means “Holy City”. From Wikipedia: Hierapolis was founded as a thermal spa early in the 2nd century BC within the sphere of the Seleucid Empire. Hierapolis became a healing centre where doctors used the thermal springs as a treatment for their patients. There is a theatre in the city which consisted of stacked seating with a capacity of 15,000 and was bisected by a horizontal corridor. It featured an imperial box.

Ancient ruins of Hierapolis

Hierapolis theatre

Antique pool of Hierapolis

We only spent 1.5 hours here at Pamukkale-Hierapolis which wasn't enough for me to take photographs. I didn't manage to go to the theatre as it was a bit further from the Pamukkale pools. I stopped by the souvenir shop before boarding the bus to get a fridge magnet for 3TL

Next in the itinerary was Konya to visit the Mevlana museum. On the way we stopped by a small town, Dinar to enjoy the home made yogurt from goat milk. The yogurt was creamy and topped with honey and opium poppy seeds. I didn't get high though from the opium.

Dinar yogurt. That's the poppy seed!

We stopped again next, this time for lunch at Kirazlibahce of yummy grilled chicken wings and delicious soup. One thing for sure, for all our meals, we would be served appetizer of salad, soup and bread; main dish of meat (chicken or beef) with rice and dessert of fruits.

yummy grilled chicken wings w butter rice


We had to rush to Konya to catch the opening time of the Mevlana museum. Finally we arrived at Konya at 3.40pm. From Wikipedia: The Mevlâna Museum is the mausoleum of Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, a Sufi mystic also known as Mevlâna or Rumi. It was also the dervish lodge (tekke) of the Mevlevi order, better known as the whirling dervishes. The mausoleum and dervish lodge was converted into a museum in 1926. There is a marble-paved courtyard with a sadirvan (washing fountain) in the middle. The kitchen of the dervishes (Matbah) was also used for educating the dervishes, teaching them the Sema.

The mausoleum doors are decorated with Seljuk motifs and a Persian text from mollah Abdurrahman Cami dating from 1492. It leads into the small Tilavet Room (Tilavet Odası) decorated with rare and precious Ottoman calligraphy in the sülüs, nesih, and talik styles. In this room the Koran was continuously recited and chanted before the mausoleum was turned into a museum. Photography of the tombs is not allowed.

According to Burak, Konya is the most religious (Islamic)  city in Turkiye. All the restaurants are closed during the day in Ramadhan. At other cities, the restaurants are opened.

Konya museum

Sufi at the kitchen

After the museum, we stopped for solat at Haci Veyis Camii nearby and then proceeded to visit the Sultanhani Caravanserai which was about 1hr 20mins away. It was already dark when we arrived at Sultanhani and the caravanserai has already been closed. We had to wait for about 15 minutes for the gatekeeper to come and open the door for us. 

Caravanserai was a roadside inn where traders traversing the Silk Road / long distance travellers could rest and recover from the day's journey. There was also a courtyard to place animals such as camels and carriages. 

Haci Veyis Camii

ablution place at Haci Veyis Camii

courtyard of Sultanhani caravanserai



Sultanhani caravanserai entrance

About 2 hours away from Sultanhani was our final destination for today – the region of Cappadocia. We would be staying at the 5 star Dinler hotel in Uygup which was just a few minutes away from our hot air balloon take off point. We arrived at the hotel at 8.45pm Dinner was served buffet style, but the dishes were only so-so. Perhaps the tiring journey spoiled my appetite. After dinner, we went back to our rooms for rest. Tomorrow would start very early at 5.50am for our hot air balloon ride. 

Dinler room



Post a Comment

<< Home