“Wow! Where is that?” you ask!
“Cappadocia,” I say.
“Where is Cappadocia?”
Living in Ankara, Turkey, we were about a four hour drive to the famous valley of fairy chimneys in Cappadocia. It was one of our go-to places. When we tired of the hustle and bustle of the captial city, Cappadocia was the first place we thought to go. It’s quiet, beautiful during all seasons of the year, and we just love it!
This is a pretty iconic shot of the fairy chimney houses in Goreme, Turkey. The region called Cappadocia is located on the Anatolian side of Turkey, right in the middle. It’s about four hours driving time southeast of Ankara, or you can easily fly within about an hour from anywhere in the country into Nevsehir.
One of the favorite things to do in Cappadocia is to take a hot air balloon ride over the enchanting rock formations. Jim and I never went up in one of the balloons, because paying big Euros to wake up before sunrise, get intimate with 15-20 people in a vehicle made out of material and run by fire…not my idea of fun. I preferred to see the balloons come up over the hill and spread out across the valley. I loved hearing the hiss as the driver releases the gas for the balloon to go higher. It’s pretty!
The rock formations of Cappadocia and some underground caves have played a large role in the history of the region, therefore gaining its inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage Site List. Since Neolithic times, many have used the caves and rocks as homes. They gained a lot of their fame in the 9th – 11th century when the Byzantines painted thousands of Christian frescoes on the walls and ceilings. This continued until the Seljuks conquered the area.
Still people lived in the caves, and they still do today. In fact, if you go to Cappadocia, yo will enter many. Some are now museums, some are shops or cafes, and I even saw one that is a police station. However, the most popular for tourists are the cave hotels, of which I’ve stayed in many. Some are much more luxurious than others.
In Goreme, you can walk up and down the valley, on narrow streets, and everywhere there are homes and hotels built into the rock formations. It really is a magical place.
Have you been to Cappadocia?