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A city known for its marvelous topography, the otherworldly beauty of Cappadocia’s volcanic landscape makes you feel like you’re on another planet! During your visit, go on a hot air balloon to get a bird’s-eye view of the city’s rocky hills, towering boulders, and narrow valleys is a must-try. However, Cappadocia in Turkey also has a plethora of activities beneath its surface, where you can check out its many underground cities and the architecture in the caverns. cappadocia turkey

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Nearly 4 million tourists visited Türkiye’s famed, fairy-tale-like destination Cappadocia in the first 11 months of this year.

Cappadocia, a UNESCO world heritage site located in the central province of Nevsehir, became a popular destination worldwide in recent years thanks to its distinctive volcanic cones known as fairy chimneys, atmospheric underground cities, hot-air balloon trips, houses carved into rocks, and churches, chapels, and shelters used in the early years of the Christian faith.

Göreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia cappadocia turkey

Located on the central Anatolia plateau within a volcanic landscape sculpted by erosion to form a succession of mountain ridges, valleys and pinnacles known as “fairy chimneys” or hoodoos, Göreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia cover the region between the cities of Nevşehir, Ürgüp and Avanos, the sites of Karain, Karlık, Yeşilöz, Soğanlı and the subterranean cities of Kaymaklı and Derinkuyu. The area is bounded on the south and east by ranges of extinct volcanoes with Erciyes Dağ (3916 m) at one end and Hasan Dağ (3253 m) at the other. The density of its rock-hewn cells, churches, troglodyte villages and subterranean cities within the rock formations make it one of the world’s most striking and largest cave-dwelling complexes. Though interesting from a geological and ethnological point of view, the incomparable beauty of the decor of the Christian sanctuaries makes Cappadocia one of the leading examples of the post-iconoclastic Byzantine art period.

It is believed that the first signs of monastic activity in Cappadocia date back to the 4th century at which time small anchorite communities, acting on the teachings of Basileios the Great, Bishop of Kayseri, began inhabiting cells hewn in the rock. In later periods, in order to resist Arab invasions, they began banding together into troglodyte villages or subterranean towns such as Kaymakli or Derinkuyu which served as places of refuge.

Cappadocian monasticism was already well established in the iconoclastic period (725-842) as illustrated by the decoration of many sanctuaries which kept a strict minimum of symbols (most often sculpted or tempera painted crosses). However, after 842 many rupestral churches were dug in Cappadocia and richly decorated with brightly coloured figurative paintings. Those in the Göreme Valley include Tokalı Kilise and El Nazar Kilise (10th century), St. Barbara Kilise and Saklı Kilise (11th century) and Elmalı Kilise and Karanlık Kilise (end of the 12th – beginning of the 13th century).cappadocia turkey

Cappadocia’s museums and archaeological sites were visited by over 3.97 million people so far this year, said the Nevsehir Governorship.

Goreme Open Air Museum was visited by over 1 million people in 11 months.

Must see places:

Pigeon Valley

Pigeon Valley (Goreme) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go
A trip to Cappadocia wouldn’t be complete without a hike through Pigeon Valley, an easy trail that stretches between Goreme Town and Uchisar Town! Here you can take in the city’s moon-like landscape, admire the tall rock formations called “fairy chimneys”, or explore the caves along the trail, which are occasionally used by the pigeons to roost. With its spectacular views that make for fantastic photos, especially during a clear day, it’s no surprise that Pigeon Valley is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Cappadocia. Should you need to take a breather, stop by the many gift shops and refreshment stands.

Pasabag

Tours & Tickets - Monks Valley (Pasabag Vadisi), Goreme - Viator

Witness one of the most popular landmarks in Cappadocia, the Pasabag Valley, where you can take a close look at the conical, mushroom-shaped rock formations called “fairy chimneys”. Situated between the Goreme and Avanos, it’s an ideal place for a leisurely walk as you travel from one to the other. During your trip, make sure to get a good look at the monk refuges carved into some of the pillars, which have been well-preserved throughout time. It is recommended to wear a sturdy pair of shoes when exploring the valley, especially if you wish to climb to the top.

 

Uchisar Castle

Nevsehir - Uchisar Castle
Perched on a rock, the Uchisar Castle is a majestic citadel that houses centuries-old historical relics. Spend some time exploring the cave dwellings, some of which are still inhabited to this day, and the tunnels that can be found throughout. We recommend that you climb up to the top of the castle, which will reward you with panoramic views of the city and the surroundings. Visit early in the morning to watch the hot air balloons take off or late in the afternoon so you can catch the stunning sunset, which paints the castle in vivid orange.

 

 

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, tourist guide Elif Durdu said tourism in the region continues for 12 months, adding that the region draws attention from local and foreign tourists.

“Cappadocia is a place that has a different beauty in every season, both in terms of history and nature,” she said.

Ufukcan Atceken, another tourist guide, said that Cappadocia is an important tourism center, especially for the Western world. Atceken said hot air balloon tours, fairy chimneys and churches also play important roles in attracting visitors. cappadocia turkey

 

 

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