In days gone by all the towns and villages in Turkey had a bathhouse where the
local people gathered regularly to relax and exchange gossip. The baths were
segregated and were open at a set time for men and women, nowadays however most
baths are mixed.
No visit to Turkey is complete without experiencing a Turkish bath. Not only
will you feel completely clean and relaxed afterwards, but it is also an
excellent way of prolonging your tan.
On entering the baths you will be able to leave your valuables and clothing in a
locker. You will then be given a “pesternal”, a thin wrap-around sarong, (which
can be worn over your swimwear if you wish), as well as a pair of plastic
slippers or wooden clogs to wear on your feet and later a towel for drying off.
You can then go through into the main marble-lined bath chamber to relax in the
steamy atmosphere. Around the chamber you will find marble wash basins with hot
and cold running water to mix and dowse yourself with using the traditional
metal dish provided.
At the heart of the ''hamam'', (Turkish bath), is the ''gobek tasi'', (navel
stone), a raised marble platform positioned directly over the wood furnaces that
heat the premises. Here you will receive your first massage; a brisk rub-down
with a loofah mitt to exfoliate dead skin. The second masseur will then cover
you from head to toe with rich soap bubbles and massage each part of your body,
untying all those knots…an experience not to be missed!
Finally take a shower and enrobe yourself in thick towels ready for a drink
perhaps and some more relaxation time.