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Cleansing Your Body and Soul: Traditional Turkish Bath

Hamams have always been an important part of Turkish culture. From the days of Ottoman Empire, hamams have been used not for just taking a bath but for also as a tradition of transition. Young brides and grooms get ready for their wedding days, soldiers going to and coming from their duties or merchants on their way to trading have always stopped at a Turkish bath before their next destination.

With their traditions, associated beliefs, and philosophy of life, baths became an institution, which spread throughout Anatolia. As a public space where social status was relatively fluid and open to negotiation, it helped to sustain the Ottoman Empire for many centuries. Baths have played a much more meaningful role in the social lives of women than those of men. Contrary to male bath traditions, women attended the baths in groups. The preparations carried out before going to the bath were also a social activity in and of themselves, which further reflected the social activity in the bath. All the items used in the activities that went on in the bath were carefully prepared. Going to hamam has always been an important ritual on this land and the tradition is still carried on.

Traditionally, Turkish baths followed a three-step process, a sauna and steam and then a full body wash – often finishing with a massage. Today in Istanbul the hamam process has been adapted and developed to include a variation of spa treatments incorporated into the hours you spend steaming and sauna. As MedAssist, we can offer you a wide range of Hamam and Spa options from our catalog, as the cleansing of your body and mind is an important part of your journey here.