Both Bex and I experienced a Turkish Bath or ‘Hammam’ during our time in Turkey. I was a very unique experience to say the least! Check out my short video showing the inside of a Hammam and what was involved. Sorry for the dark video. The lights were very low and it’s essentially a sauna so the camera got fogged up pretty quick. I haven’t been scrubbed so hard by someone since I was a kid!
Here’s a definition of a Turkish Bath from Wikipedia:
“In Western Europe, the “Turkish bath” as a method of cleansing and relaxation became popular during the Victorian era (1837-1901). The process involved in taking a Turkish bath is similar to that of a sauna, but is more closely related to ancient Greek and ancient Roman bathing practices.
The Turkish bath starts with relaxation in a room (known as the warm room) that is heated by a continuous flow of hot, dry air, allowing the bather to perspire freely. Bathers may then move to an even hotter room (known as the hot room) before they wash in cold water. After performing a full body wash and receiving a massage, bathers finally retire to the cooling-room for a period of relaxation.
The difference between the Islamic hammam and the Victorian Turkish bath is the air. The hot air in the Victorian Turkish bath is dry; in the Islamic hammam the air is often steamy. The bather in a Victorian Turkish bath will often take a plunge in a cold pool after the hot rooms; the Islamic hammam usually does not have a pool unless the water is flowing from a spring. In the Islamic hammams the bathers splash themselves with cold water.”