Rock Sites of Cappadocia, Turkey
If you need a reason to visit Turkey, one word is enough - Capadoccia.
Of course, you will see many other (also very interesting) places, but this area is... unique.
A couple of days is enough, but Goreme, Uchisar, Zelve and Nevsehir are words that you will never forget.
On our last day in Istanbul (New Town, Beyoglu) with some but not a lot of time to kill before going to the airport, we decided to go and get pampered.
Babyface Beautycenter did exactly that. Brows, manicure and pedicure set each of us 60 lira and 1½ hour back.
Do check out the amount of treatments they offer, it is extensive and I believe fairly priced.
The staff is friendly and skilled which more than make up for the minor language barrier. I highly recommend Ayse, she really knows her trade.
You can pay both cash and card.
Cappadocia is out of this world.
It's among the most amazing places on this earth with weird and wobderful rock formations shaped by ancient vulcanic erutions.
The area is quite big and you should set aside several days to explore the area if you have the time for it.
It´s both a natural aswell as a cultural destination and you should do your uttermost to visit this place.
The biggest must see in turkey i would say.
Everyone knows about Cappadocia so I am only going to talk about what I didn't do!
I loved this town but only had 3 days so went touring everywhere, climbing mountians, visiting the caves and adjoining towns - there was so much to see.
What I didn't do - and have regretted since is a Balloon Tour. The weather was great, the skies blue and I was sitting outside our hotel watching the balloons rise up over the cliffs...and I missed out.
If you have the opportunity - do a balloon trip. Cost between 150 - 300 Euro but gee I wished I had done one.
I made a trip to Cappadocia, visiting valleys and natural castle around the region. The 3 day trip that I found at www.turkeygoldentours.com was really complete and great. You can learn a lot about history and see many beautiful places. The hot air ballon is the top atraction of the place and I really recomend it. I followed suggestions from the manager of the tour agency Tugrul and I found everything very well organized.
Almost in the middle of Turkey lies a region called Cappadocia, with a landscape of beautiful and mystical rock formations often referred to as "fairy chimneys". And in the middle of it all there is the village Göreme, which is more touristy than most other places in the region, but with plenty of charm.
And what better way to see it all than to go ballooning? It is not cheap (and you have to get up at about four in the morning), but definitely worth the money. Unlike a lot of other places where you can go ballooning, there are no limits as to how low you can fly. So you float by fairy chimneys, look at people eating breakfast, and brush past three tops. Fantastic!
We read Ürgüp was a good base for exploring Kapadokya (Cappadocia) and that recommendation is definitely accurate. This town is so cute! We stayed in a cave hotel which was exactly what we wanted (until we realized that it was winter and caves are pretty cold). Since it's compact, it's easily walkable with everything you could want. We went to a restaurant for dinner, a bar in the evening (and even found our way back to the hotel afterward), a cafe/bakery for breakfast and strolled by the shops in the morning. It's clean and safe and the people are friendly. If you're interested in taking a tour or even just getting information on the area attractions, there's a visitors center here and tour company offices.
While Ürgüp has plenty to offer on its own, another appeal it has is that it's located near all the other places you'll want to visit.
A Must See while in Turkey! Ancient volcanoes have created a lunar landscape of the Cappodocia region of central Turkey. We stayed in Goreme and had an amazing two days touring around. Catch a night bus in, head to any one of the many travel agents around trying to sell you tours and accomodation (We were with Road Runner who were excellent, although overbooked the tour on the second day, and stayed at Star Cave Hotel which was great but cold!) and then do a day touring the north and a day touring the south and then catch a night bus to your next destination. Seems far away but easy to organise and reall only takes three days from Istanbul to see one of the most amazing places on earth.
THis is a must once you reach Cappadocia in Central Anatolia.
Go to a liitle town called Goreme and ask about Cappadocia Ballons or Goreme Ballons. Are the most experienced ballon companies.
This experience is unique and the view is absolutely fantastic.
Have you never flewn a hot air balloon you should take the chance in Cappadocia. The wind conditions in the morning are perfect and the balloons take off almost every morning during the season.
It's an unforgettable memory!
I flew with Kapadokya Balloons which had been recomended to me. The pilots, Lars and Serhan, are experienced and really good, and as the only company in Göreme they start at different spots every morning - depending on the wind (other companies seems to hang around more just over Göreme).
We were two balloons flying together which was very nice as you can see the others take off, in the air and at the landing.
At the landing we got some champange (mixt with a fruit juice) and snacks. We also got a nice Certificate.
The long tour wish is about 1,5 hours costs 200 dollars
(290 000 000 TL). There is also a shorter, and less expensive, tour.
It is a lot of money but it is a great experiense I will never forget.
One of most unique places in Turkey is Cappadocia. Its landscape is dominated by weird looking rocks, shaped by the wind. The locals benefited from the softness of the rocks for centuries. The entire area is full with caves and even underground cities, some more than 10 floors deep.
I have to say I'm not really to sure exactly where these houses are. I have so many photos of these fairy chimneys I've lost track of where they are.
The two main areas we visited were Urgup and Goreme.
Urgup was the most touristy of the too but was'nt too bad. We stayed in a hotel that was a former monastery and cut into the rock which was fun and next door was a building whose balcony is apparantly very famous since its featured in a well known Turkish soap opera. Unfortunately the showbizzy aspect of all this was a bit lost on me since I've never seen the programme!
A weird and wacky landscape!
The landscape was formed some 10 million years ago from the volcanic outpourings of Mount Erciyes, Hasandagi and Golludag.
The variety of composition of the volcanic rock has lead to differential weathering of the strata providing the strange hoodoo and fairly chimney affect of the region.
Mankinds impact on the area has been to mold these strange shapes into dwellings and churches.
The area has many interesting towns. Urgup is a good centre for exporing the area. Goreme has an interesting open air museum with monasteries and chruches carved into the rock as the area became a bolt hole for christians during roman persecution.
If you are lucky you can stay in a cave as many old cave dwellings have been turned into hotels and hostels.
If you get the chance go ballooning, it is expensive, but good value compared to other places in the world, and the scenery is unique.
Its well worth the trip into Cappadocia if you have a few spare days (too much to see in just one day). The varied landscapes of mountains, gorges, underground cities and those amazing rock formations at Goreme are not to be missed. See more info on my Goreme page.
The topography of the Cappadocia area is amazing however you see it, but definitely go and take a hot-air balloon ride if you can. It's fairly pricey, but check around a bit first and compare, as there are at least 4 companies doing it. We went with EZ-Air, because booking through our hotel, the Kelebek in Göreme, meant it cost 'only' $150 p/p instead of the $180 other companies charged. This was for a long flight (about 1 1/4 hours). Short flights cost $125.They pick you up from your hotel at 5.30 (earlier if you are in one of the other villages) and take you to the take-off site for coffee first. Times change slightly with the seasons, as take-off should be just at dawn because of the thermals. Our pilot, Hassan, has been doing it since ballooning began in Cappadocia, so he's very experienced. It was a great thrill how he managed to navigate us just a few feet away from the pinnacles and fairy chimney at times, lowering us down for a perfect bird's eye view and then take off again to soar up up and away into the blue skies. At the end of the whole experience, of course, there's champagne and juice for everyone. Hassan was so good, he managed to land the basket on the trailer that had come into the farmer's field to pick up the balloon! A terrific feat! The whole experience was a real adrenalin rush!