"City of the Dead"



The huge necropolis of Hierapolis, largest ancient graveyard in Anatolia with more than 1200 tombs, spreads out on either side of the road for a distance of two kilometres. It contains tumuli, sarcophagi, and house-shaped tombs that range in date from the late Hellenistic period to early Christian times. It is one of the most extensive and best preserved ancient cemeteries in Anatolia, although most of the graves and vaults have in fact been plundered.


The oldest graves, dating from the 1st and 2nd century BCE Hellenistic period are circular Tumuli graves with entrance passageways, but erosion has made these hard to locate.


Whilst the simple graves of the ordinary people have been cut into the rock, there are many elaborate monumental tombs belonging to the richer classes, either for use by individuals or family vaults, some resembling small temples.


The types of tombs and sarcophagi have changed over the centuries, and there are good examples of each type.


Most of the tombs are constructed from marble, limestone or travertine, some raised on a platforms or dais. The tops vary from flat to pitched roofs, with horns or embellishments.


Some have marble reliefs on their side panels, or epitaphs engraved upon them giving details of the deceased's life.




Horned Sarcophagus


Vault with Pediment


Domed Tomb




Pamukkale Tour