Heavy clouds loomed above us as we removed our shoes and socks to climb up the permitted side of the travertine. The wind and wetness sent a chill into our bones, and we soon found ourselves gleefully making our way as quickly as excited children towards any of the pools of hot spring water, where we would linger until we were ready for the next stretch of the climb.
Most of the dry travertine was rough, the smoother parts slippery when wet, but the floors of the hot pools were a marvelous consistency— something both chalky and clay-like, that I took great pleasure in squishing between my toes.
From the top of Pamukkale, I could see snow-capped mountains in the distance, every bit as white as the travertine stretched out before me.
Some of the thermal pools were the most delicate pale blue.