Temple of Apollo


The foundations of the Temple of Apollo at Hierapolis remain today. Once the heart of the city, this was where people came to consult the temple's oracle. The adjoining spring, known as the Plutonium, was where people gave sacrifices to the gods. Apparently only the temple's eunuch priests understood the secret of holding one's breath around the toxic fumes that billowed up from Hades, immediately killing the small animals and birds they sacrificed.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Pamukkale attractions

1. Byzantine Church


Hierapolis' scant Byzantine church ruins are a bit of a jumble and difficult to decipher. They're behind the museum.

2. Hierapolis

0.11 MILES

This ancient spa city's location atop Pamukkale's tourist-magnet travertines is quite spectacular. Founded as a curative centre around 190 BC by Eumenes…

3. Hierapolis Archaeology Museum

0.13 MILES

Housed in former Roman baths, this excellent museum exhibits spectacular sarcophagi from nearby archaeological site Laodicea and elsewhere; small finds…

4. Travertines

0.17 MILES

The World Heritage–listed saucer-shaped travertines (or terraces) of Pamukkale wind sideways down the powder-white mountain above the village, providing a…

5. Gymnasium


Only a few Doric columns remain from Hierapolis' 1st-century gymnasium, which was one of the social hubs of the ancient city. An earthquake in the 7th…

6. Roman Theatre

0.22 MILES

The Roman theatre is the highlight of Hierapolis, dramatically sitting uphill from the site and overlooking the ruins and mountains beyond. The stage area…

7. Byzantine Gate

0.27 MILES

The first monument you come to if you enter Hierapolis at the south gate is this 5th-century travertine block and marble gate.

8. South Gate

0.31 MILES

This entrance gate to Hierapolis is about 2.5km up the hill from Pamukkale village.