I've read mixed reviews about Pamukkale. Has anyone been there recently. Is it worth going into the pool. We are planning 2 nights and one day. Is this too much. We are in Turkey for 15 days so we are not really rushed but don't want to spend time here if it is grotty
I was there almost two years ago. Although a very nice place to see, I don't think you need more than a day to see it. It's clearly not as beautiful as some of the old postcard pictures show, but it's still worth seeing. If you really want to spend time there and see all of the ruins, then stay a day. Otherwise, you can do what I did and book a tour in Selcuk. Includes transportation, lunch (somewhat bland, but I doubt there's good food in the area), and admission to Pamukkale (not admission to the pool though). If I had that much time in Turkey I'd definitely want to hit up Antalya or some other spots on the coast.
I spent 2 nights there a few years ago and really enjoyed it. you can walk up/down during the day and evening, the scene was pretty amazing - very different from anything I have seen. the ruin on top of the hill is vast and you can explore on your own. the hot spring swimming pool is great, a little expensive but felt great after a day of exploration. overall I thought it was well worth it. Given you have 15 days you do want to plan your time well. Because I started in Bodrum in the south and moving up, I saw Pamukkale and Selcuk/Efes before Istanbul. But if you start from IST and work your way down and if you also want to cover Capadocia, then you may run out of time. From a scenic perspective, I think Pamukkale is just as amazing as Efes.
We were there in Sept.2011. We arrived in the afternoon and went to the park. We did not go to the hot pool below. We spent the afternoon and early evening walking up through the hot springs and then through Hieropolis, the ruins at the top, before walking down again. It was well worth it, but if you arrive in the afternoon, you would probably have enough time to experience the springs and visit the ruins.
If you decide to spend the night, the ruins of Aphrodisias are a great half-day trip by dolmus. They are beautiful and quite extensive.
Hi - My family of 4 went to Pamukkale last April. We drove from Selcuk and were planning on spending a night there. We didn't because of the rainy weather later in the day. We then drove back to the coast. Made for a long day but we remark now that we were glad we say the sight and then also glad we didn't stick around, We stayed there for maybe 4 hours and could have stayed another 2-3 hours. The pool was fun to do but definitely less beautiful/natural then I thought it would be. It's more like a swimming pool with ancient columns in it. I don't regret spending the money to go in though. It is not cheap. Maybe $20 US or so if I remember right. I would only stay 1 night. Spend the better part of the day there and then hit the road mid-afternoon. Not much to see in the town at night...there are better locations to stay.