Denizli

Denizli Travel Blog

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Denizli lies in the Aegean region of southwestern Turkey. Nestling against high mountains near the Meander River, it is the capital of Denizli province of Turkey, and has a population of 275480 according to the 2000 census. The surrounding fertile valley and extensive forests, together with its archaelogical wealth makes it a great attraction for tourists. Modern Denizli is a city of hotels, parks and broad streets.

Although Denizli lies in the Aegean region, its location in the inner region spares it largely from the Aegean climate. It has a terrestrial climate and is fanned by winds from the sea. The winter is warm and rainy.

Denizli is well connected by road to all regions of Turkey. By rail it is connected to Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir.

The rail route to Izmir runs parallel to the 180 kilometers long Denizili - Aydin - Izmir highway. The airport at Cardak county center is about 70 kilometers from the city center.

Denizli can be an attractive stopover while traveling between the major provinces of Turkey. By and large it has everything a tourist wants. But it has something you will not get anywhere - the natural wonder of "white frozen castles" of Pammukale.

Being a fertile region Denizli has been a center of various civilizations succeeding one another. Its beginnings are traced to the chalcolithic age. Among the older civilizations are counted the Luvians, Phrygians, Persians, Greeks and Romans while the later ones include the Byzantines, Seljuks and the Ottomans.



The old city is 6 km north of the modern city and was built by Antiokos and named Laodikea after his wife. This city is mentioned in the Book of Revelations as one of the seven churches. The nearby city of Triopolis was known as the center of bishops. Hierapolis, also called Pamukkale, is another historical city which is marked by its stalactites, cataracts and basins and offers a stunning spectacle.

Among the historical ruins the most prominent are the Roman and the Byzantine ruins, which are better preserved than others. Later the Muslims - Seljuks and Ottomans - introduced the beauty of Islamic architecture to Denizli.

If you are interested in the history of the region then the museums here are worth a visit. The Hieropolis archaeology museum is housed in a Roman bath since 1984 and is one of the biggest buildings there.

Here, besides the creations from Hieropolis, you can see traces of Laodikeia, Collossai, Tripolis and Lycos. An important part of the museum is its collection of Bronze Age artifacts from Beycesultan Tumulus.

At the center of the city is the Ataturk Ethnography Museum. On the upper floor are exhibited cultural artifacts like furniture jewellery, clothes, carpets and guns. Also exhibited is the room where Ataturk stayed during his visits to Denizli.

40 kilometers north of Denizli city lay Tripolis a rich trade and agriculture center during ancient times, with its own architectural and living style. You can visit this city while at Denizli. An idea of its importance can be had from the fact that the Nikea council in 325 B.C. mentions it in its list of bishops of Lydia. Here you can see Roman baths and theatres and Late Roman and Byzantine period castles and ramparts surrounding the city.


Another place to see is Colossae. Lying 25 kilometers south of Denizli, it was one of the biggest cities of Frigia. It also has a castle ruin of the Ottoman period and an Acropolis from ancient times.

Among the building of the Muslim period are the Acipayam Yazir Mosque built in 1801 and richly decorated with panels of pictures. The Bogazici Mosque at Bogazici, built by the Seljuks is a wooden structure with rich wooden patterns on it.

The region has several curative Hot Springs very much worth a visit. The Cizmeli (Yenice) thermal is 16 kilometers away. The Golemezli Camur Thermal is made up of four springs each having a different characteristic. The Tekkekoy thermal is 20 kilometers away from Saraykoy.

Here remains of a Roman bath contain pool and dressing rooms. The Kizildere Hot Spring 11 kilometers from Saraykoy has two domed Turkish bath or hamams. The waters here spring from red colored stones of the Saraykoy Village.

The waters of all these thermals are known to be beneficial to people suffering from rheumatism, skin and heart disease, gynecological and urethra disease and arteriosclerosis among other diseases.

But the pride of place among thermal springs is taken by the Hieropolis or Pammukale springs. The stalactites, cataracts and basins created by the calcareous salts of its waters put up a unique and spectacular display. This display has been beautifully and very aptly described as a "fairyland of dazzling white, petrified castles". The sight is magical. This spring has been used for its curative powers since Roman times. The complex with its motels is on a plateau.
A visit to these springs is a must for every tourist.

These roosters are the symbol of Denizli and well-known all over Turkey. Their crowing performances are a big draw in Turkey. Earlier belief about its origin from Albania has been discarded. Now it is accepted that it is a product of the region`s long association with rooster breeding. This rooster culture is an elaborate and well organized activity. They are bred to specifications - physical ones being build, color of the body, eyes, combs and legs and weight. They are sorted based on these parameters.

More interesting and fascinating is the sorting done according to the quality of their crowing sound. Crowing performance requires use of all abilities including body positions. Breeding is carried out under state supervision. For a tourist with wider interests it should be a novel and fascinating experience.



Other attractions of Denizili are the forests and numerous picnics and camping sites that offer easy retreat. The Honaz National Park is situated 20 kilometers from Denizili. Mt. Honaz with its beautiful Alpine forests is the highest peak in the Aegean range and is a picturesque spot to visit. The remains of the ancient site of Colossac can be seen from here.

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Denizli
photo by: zeraczl