Thoughts of sulphur often conjure up aromas of rotten eggs. So why would you voluntarily soak in a natural sulphur spring, and proceed to slather thick and slimy mud all over your body?
From the small town of Dalyan on the southwest coast of Turkey, we navigate on the river through the maze-like water passages of the Dalyan Delta, passing the ancient Lycian Rock Tombs perched high above on a cliff. Soon the narrow Dalyan River opens wide into the Lake Köyceğiz, not far from our destination – the Natural Mud Baths at Sultaniye.
Getting here is already part of the adventure. When our boat docks at Sultaniye, a small village on Lake Köyceğiz, the sulfurous odor is unmistakable. Situated on the slope of Ölemez Mountain, the hot spings are located on a fault line. Incredibly, the sulfurous water stays at a consistent temperature of 40°C. The ancient bath ruins date back to the Roman era and were restored in the 1990s.
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The mildly radioactive water, which is rich in Radon, sulfur, iron, calcium, potassium and other minerals is said to have many health benefits. Soaking in a mud bath for a few minutes isn’t going to give you a clean bill of health right away, but small quantities of sulfur can be absorbed transdermally or inhaled as a mineralized mist, which can help with the following health issues:
Helps to alleviate swelling and inflammation, therefore providing pain relief and reducing stiffness
Eases irritated, itchy or reddened skin suffering from psoriasis, dandruff, eczema etc.
Helps with detox
What You Need To Know Before Entering The Mud Bath
If you just purchased a beautiful designer swimsuit, this is certainly not the time to wear it. Put on an old swimsuit that you don’t mind staining. If the swimsuit has accessories such as metal buckles or clasps, the sulphurous mud with corrode them. Even after a few washes, your swimsuit may still smell of eggs.
Remove all jewelry before getting off the boat before they come in contact with the sulphurous water or mist in the air to avoid tarnishing them.
Don’t hold your breath when you’re in the hot springs or mud bath because of the putrid smell. Breathing in the vapours are beneficial to your health and are non-toxic.
We stayed at Dalyan Resort & Spa http://www.dalyanresort.com/
Be prepared that even after several washes, your skin may still smell of rotten eggs. Think twice before you slather your hair with the mud as it’ll be harder to rinse clean of the mud and also of the smell.
After the mud on your body dries and starts to crack, you can easily rinse it all off under the open-air showers or just jump into the lake. There are also large thermal bath pools, covered from the elements under dome structures for you to relax in. A small bar and restaurant complete the experience.
All smells aside, the experience was the perfect balance of relaxation, culture, expansive landscapes and medicinal tourism. The Natural Mud Baths at Sultaniye are definitely worth an excursion!