As a photographer I had heard about the beauty and uniqueness of Cappadocia. I had seen images of the sky filled with hot air balloons and weird shaped rocks rising up from the ground. So you of course I was rather excited to travel and see this wonder with my own eyes. I was able to spend 5 days in this unique landscape and can tell you it is a must see!
Where To stay
First I have to tell you about the wonderful accommodations we stayed in. Although the area is full of unique cave hotels I would be hard pressed to find one better than Kale Konak Cave Hotel. It was literally like staying in a small castle with 5 star amenities. The owner was so kind and accommodating and the place was so special I felt like a king for 5 days. Of course none of this would have been possible without Argeus Travel and Tours. They give you such a unique experience and have all the connections so you can have a stress free time in Cappadocia.
What to do in Cappadocia
- Now on to what to do in Cappadocia. After you mentally get a grip on the awe inspiring cave landscape and unique buildings, it is a good idea to book a hot air balloon ride if you haven’t already. It is a must do. I have been on a hot air balloon before, but going up in Cappadocia is a whole other experience. You cannot go wrong with Voyager Balloons. So knowledgeable and skilled at their craft, it is an experience in itself.
- Another tip for those interested in history and archeology, check out an underground city. There you get to explore where town folk used to go and hide from invading armies. Learn how they lived down there and twist your way through small tunnels and caves.
What about fitness?
- There are plenty of beautiful places to hike in Cappadocia and it is very unique. You are hiking through surreal and weird landscapes and you can climb and explore thousands of caves and peaks if adventure is calling your name.
- Uchisar Castle – Situated at the highest point in Cappadocia, on the Nevsehir-Goreme road, just 5 km from Goreme. The top of the Uchisar Castle, provides a magnificent panorama of the surrounding area with Mount Erciyes in the distance. There are many caves and areas to explore around the back side.
- Goreme National Park – The national park consists of valleys with the world-famous rock formations of Cappadocia, the conical shaped rocks created over centuries out of eroded volcanic stone, and known as Fairy Chimneys.
- Pigeon Valley – This valley descends from Uçhisar to Göreme. You can go both directions but starting in Uçhisar is easier since it goes downhill the whole way to Göreme. This trail has two starting points in Uçhisar. The longer route starts on the backside of the town near the Overlook point. The shorter trail starts close to the fork in the Göreme – Uçhisar road.
- Red Valley and Rose Valley – Across from Ortahisar a couple of kilometers down a road is a panorama viewpoint. This marks the beginnings of the multiple trails into both Rose and Red Valleys. The trails take different routes but all end in the same place near Çavuşin village. These valleys have a wonderful combination of ancient churches, panoramic views, and freaky landscape. If you happen to be in Cappadocia during a full moon, then you may want to plan a moonlight hike through this valley. Groups do this each month. It is even possible without flashlights on a cloudless night.
- Cappadocia is Turkey’s trail biking paradise. It is a volcanic landscape and offers both challenging and rewarding trails of slick rock, lush, green tracks and unforgettable caves, tunnels and canyons. I doubt that there are many better places to ride a bike on this earth. With its long, dry summers and cold winters, often with heavy snow, the best time to ride is May – June and September – October.
- Cappadocia was known as “Katpatuka”, land of beautiful horses. You can find plenty of horseback riding tours from 2 hours to multiple days. Explore all the wonderful wonders of this area on horseback.
So as you can see there is lots to do in Cappadocia. I had five days and could have used another five. It will definitely go on my list of top outdoor recreational areas I’ve been to. Merging history, culture and the wonders of mother nature does not happen too often in life. Get out there and explore, learn and live. And try to burn some calories while you are at it. It makes you appreciate the experience that much more.