Pamukkale, Turkey

“I know most cats don’t like to get into water, but you have to try our famous thermal springs. You will feel like you have been to a luxurious spa” said my friend Bas, a purebred Van Kedisi cat. A native of Turkey, he is pure white but has the unusual trait of two different colored eyes.  He invited me back to Turkey after we had so much fun on my previous visit. This time we went to southwest part of Turkey to Pamukkale which means Cotton Castle. Legend has it that the limestone formations are solidified cotton that giants left out to dry. Everyone had to go barefoot to prevent damage to the pools; it was a slippery trip to the 17 pools to enjoy the naturally heated water just like Romans did thousands of years ago. The minerals in the pools, formed by underground hot water sources, are said to help with all sorts of illnesses, especially digestive and circulation problems.  The ancient city of Hierapolis was a large city built nearby, there plenty of well-preserved ruins we explored including a restored amphitheater. Nearby, there’s also an archaeological museum for those that are interested in the history of the area.  Bas was right, soaking in the warm pools felt good after hiking around the ruins.  Purrs, Gulliver

Pergamon, Turkey

Sometimes I need a local guide to help me find my way around a new place. My tour guide was Bas, a Turkish Van Kedisi cat. Bas is typical of his clan with an all-white coat of fur and one blue eye and one light brown eye. He was full of energy and enjoyed being the center of attention. We explored the ancient city of Pergamon, which is now called Bergama, looking at all the ancient monuments which were once theaters, temples, a stadium and even a spa! There were beautiful pieces of art which had been carved on walls as well as 2, 300 year old columns which once held up the roofs of buildings. The tour had lots of hills and stairs to climb which made my poor paws sore. Bas took pity on me and we went to his cousin’s house. The Turkish people are very family oriented and love having company. Bas’s cousin made kebabs and served them with pilaf and pita bread. For dessert we had both kadayif, a sweet, crispy treat made with dough, nuts and lemon juice, and baklava, which is similar, but includes honey. I was stuffed! Purrs, Gulliver