This wasn't the smartest or safest activity (according to our Turkish guide), but we decided to climb up into some of caves.
If you look closely at the photo - you can see us up the top! Decent sneakers, possibly not your best outfit - we got covered in 'cave dust'.
Avanos: The Pottery capital
Avanos is a town situated in the heart of the Cappodocia region in Central Turkey.
Avanos is set on the banks of the Kizilirmak, the Red River, which gets its name from the clay that it deposits.
Every town in Turkey is renowned for something. Avanos is renowned for it's pottery and the town is still dominated by this industry today.
Avanos is about 8 km from Göreme. The town has a lively shopping center with all the usual amenities including a modern, tourist orientated hamam (Turkish Bath). A travelling market visits Avanos on Fridays.
Starting just outside the shopping center the old village of Avanos winds up the hills leading away from the town and is a beautiful maze of old stone houses, some restored, some converted and some sadly abandoned to their fate. In some of the abandoned houses the features of traditional Ottoman architecture can be seen along with ancient decorations, motifs and murals.
About 14 km from Avanos is the underground city of Özkonak and the 13th century Seljuk caravaserai, Sarýhan (which is now a museum), is only about 3 km away.
The Kizilirmak, the Red River, which gets its name from the clay that it deposits, separates Avanos from the rest of Cappadocia, and is the longest river in Turkey. It is by this river that the red pottery clay is found from which Avanos derives it's main livelihood and it's foremost claim to fame.
Pottery has been produced in the Avanos area for several centuries and some of the techniques still used date back to Hittite times.
Avanos is a possible base for exploring Cappadocia with accommodation and services available at reasonable rates. The town has retained some of its charm and is a pleasant place to spend half a day or to stop for lunch. The town has a tourist targeted Hamam (Turkish bath) which is popular with tour groups and is also close to the Selcuk built Yellow Caravanserai, a restored Han (travellers 'service station'), and the Ozkanak Underground city, a smaller version of those at Derinkuyu and Kaymakli.