Several years ago I was shown photos of Pamukkale, a natural site in southwestern Turkey famously known for its stunning thermal pools and brilliantly white calcium travertines. The name Pamukkale literally translates to “Cotton Castle” and looks like a place taken out of a fairy tale. I immediately knew that I had to visit this extraordinary site someday.
That someday came last summer, when I traveled through Turkey anxiously waiting to see Pamukkale with my own eyes. It did not disappoint. The spectacular turquoise thermal pools against the gleaming white cliffs were an impressive sight to see. Although teeming with tourists, the Cotton Castle was just as beautiful as I had imagined it to be.
Besides its breathtaking appearance, Pamukkale’s thermal baths offer a variety of health benefits dating back to ancient times. During the Greco-Roman period, Pamukkale was a spa city where people enjoyed soaking and relaxing in the pools of warm water. This still occurs today, as people from all over the world come to immerse themselves in Pamukkale’s natural water baths.
The calcium-rich water emerges from the city’s hot springs, depositing calcium into the travertines as it flows into the thermal pools. Bathers soaking in the pools absorb calcium into their skin, taking advantage of its many benefits. Calcium, an essential mineral found in the skin, helps retain moisture and preserves the skin’s natural barrier. Calcium has also been shown to play a role in skin regeneration and wound healing.
So the next time you’re interested in seeking out a surreal destination that offers stunning beauty as well as great skin benefits, place Pumukkale at the top of your list!