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Pamukkale ( Cotton Castle for Turkish / cotton castle ) is a town in the district of the same Turkish province of Denizli. Pamukkale is located about 21 km northeast of the provincial capital of Denizli. Pamukkale had according to the last census, 2,287 inhabitants ( as of December 2010).


At Pamukkale towns Karahayıt in the north, Kurt Luca in the northeast, Yeniköy in the southeast, southwest, and Çeltikçi in Develi to the northwest.


The administrative area of Pamukkale is divided into three districts, Kale Mah, Merkez Mah and Mah Pamuk, each managed by a Muhtar.

Culture and sights

The small town of Pamukkale its name from the limestone terraces, which have developed over millennia by calcareous thermal sources and represent a tourist attraction today. The terraces are on the list of World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

The local spring water is saturated with calcium bicarbonate. Upon emergence from escaping by the pressure drop of carbon dioxide, whereby the solubility of calcium carbonate is exceeded, which precipitates in the form of travertine. 250 liters of thermal water ( 30 ° C) are distributed per second, ie 21,600 m³ daily. In one liter of 2.2 g of lime are released, which is excreted to some extent; the daily amount could thus reach a maximum of 48 tons, in fact it is significantly less.

In addition, Pamukkale is also the ancient city of Hierapolis. Get are a large necropolis with various types of tombs, Temple of Apollo and Plutonium, a large theater (15,000 people), the Philip 's Church and baths, gymnasium and large parts of the city wall.

Similar sinter terraces are located at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park and much smaller in Eger in Eger in Hungary. Set in Pink and White Terraces New Zealand were a well-known tourist destination in Europe in the 19th century and were completely destroyed in 1886 by a volcanic eruption. In Berlin Görlitz Park was between 1998 and 2009, the Pamukkale terraces in imitation of wells that had to be pulled down due to structural defects.

Damage and restoration

In the 1960s, people began above the sinter terraces to build hotels to make Pamukkale attractive to the burgeoning tourism in Turkey. As access to the hotels, a road was broken crosswise through the sinter terraces. Ultimately, four large hotels and resorts were built, which, however, increasingly damaged its main attraction, the travertine itself. On one hand, lacked the terraces now the water as it was used up to a large part of the hotels or conducted only in highly polluted state over the limestone, making them quick and dirty their gleaming white coloring exchanged for a gray- black. On the other hand, it was the hotel guests and all other visitors allowed long time, completely free to move on to the terraces and even bathe in the sintering. Here, the limestone were strongly solvated mainly by the oils and chemicals in the sunscreens of bathers, and began to be, thereby creating large, some very long-term and costly irreparable damage to the sinter terraces soft and brittle.

When these problems to the early 1990s by an increasing inflow of tourists finally time intensified that Unesco threatened to Pamukkale be deleted from the World Heritage List - the sinter terraces were classified in 1988 as a World Heritage Site - one began with a large-scale rescue program.

The first of the 1996 measure was the general bathing and commission ban for the entire area of the terraces. In addition, in the same year all hotels were closed and demolished by 1998. All of today's hotels are located in the village of Pamukkale below the terraces. They get their hot water thereby only after it has passed through the sinter terraces. The direct access to the mountain has been locked. On the former road to the natural terraces modeled concrete pools were entirely new, created, which will assume the Sinterausfällungen from the over flowing water gradually a natural look. This process is already well advanced. The access to the terraces is limited to the range of these former street only bare feet over the ancient city of Hierapolis, or from the place Pamukkale possible. The frequentation of this section is controlled by security personnel.

The renaturation of the sinter terraces themselves designed to be more difficult, because especially in the upper, less touristy frequented part of some sinter basins were already almost completely destroyed. Therefore, Turkish and international experts working on a sophisticated irrigation system to accelerate the natural process of calcification in the pelvis and thus promote the recovery of the plant. It was recognized that the dissolved lime in the water only reliable dried on the existing deposit, if you do not wet the terraces some time with water. So you put on water allocation channels and told to Pamukkale in 20 individual irrigation sections. Every day is irrigated only a portion, on the other sections, the fresh lime deposits by dry thoroughly about three weeks time. Badly damaged terraces were repaired using a special concrete, which is covered with the time of the natural layer of lime.

Right now ( 2009) it has been possible after around ten years of intensive restoration, most of Pamukkale to let appear again in its natural white luster, even if some parts will need about 30 more years, according to experts, to present themselves again in their old appearance to be able to.

Twin Cities

  • Eger, Hungary
  • Las Vegas, Nevada