Cappadocia, from Uchisar to Ihlara

A Youth Backpacker in Europe

Part III Chapter V-II

Cappadocia II, from Uchisar to Ihlara

Fairy Chimneys in Cappadocia There were three prominent colours in Cappadocia, the red, the green and the blue. It was not a reference to the layers of colour vividly crafted on the cliff face of the renowned eerie lunar landscape over the course of centuries that can keep your eyes glued for hours. Neither does the colourful balloons that sailed through the sky when darkness was replaced by grey dawn are applicable in this context.

They were, at certain extent which I would strongly condemn as one of the sadness of commercial exploitation, the coloured guided tours recognised widely across the tourism industry in Cappadocia. Confused if it was a cliché that the challenge to capture the land of beautiful horses on one’s own was profusely immense, or it was just a catchphrase of tour organisers to deceive tourists to surrender their wallets.

Rock Churches in Göreme Open Air Museum Nevertheless, I wet my feet in this tourism dye vat and got myself coloured red and green in two days. To my surprise, it was agreeable that these tours were worthwhile investments, especially when substantial chunk of the payment went to admission tickets, dining in a restaurant and pick-ups that might altogether cost a great deal of hassle if not a bomb.

The red tour focused at areas surrounding Göreme where the biggest attraction was definitely the Göreme Open Air Museum. It was a massive collection of rock churches excavated deep inside the lunar landscape, often with strange names such as apple church and decorated by monotonously coloured frescoes. These frescoes do come in standard format as well. They were either human drawings with eyes dug out – it was said that invaders found the staring from the paintings uncomfortable – or geometry shapes intended for the conveyance of bible knowledge.

Derinkuyu Underground City But what I found to be the most exciting portion of the red tour was the visit to fairly chimneys field, a dominant natural attraction in Cappadocia. It was a combination of volcanic eruption and weathering process that had created this magnificent feature. They looked like mushrooms, and were often disgustedly interpreted as a metaphor for giant penises by my American tour mates. It was sheer unfortunate that the snow had altered the natural colour of these fairy chimneys, though risking broken arms and legs to walk in the fairy valley was still feasible.

On the other hand, snow fall had magically added interesting flavour to the green tour where a 4km hike along the Star WarStarting point of my Ihlara Valley hikes alike Ihlara Valley, located some 50km away from Göreme was the crown of the tour. The snow covered valley along the Ihlara River had undoubtedly magnified the hardship for a smooth hiking, but the impressive surrounding images it helped to produce was unbeatable and deserve undivided attention of hikers. That could be interpreted as an abuse case to memory capacity of camera too.

Also a highlight of the green tour was the 8-floor Derinkuyu underground city. Even with only 10 percent of the entire underground city was opened for public, it was sufficient for visitors to grasp an unforgettable idea of how creatively and intelligently the underground city was constructed in the past as a war shIhlara Valleyelter. With the very lively and interestingly seasoned description from my tour guide, it was hardly impossible to imagine the survival of people for months some 55m beneath land surface for months.

So much about the various tourist destinations in Cappadocia, it really was to convey the idea of why Cappadocia should definitely be prioritised in a visit to Turkey. But my most memorable event in Cappadocia was yet to come. Join me next time for the slowest flight a kilometre above ground and the smallest but cutest cake I had for a quarter century celebration.


Opposite Selime Monastery

Mount Hasan - the volcano responsibled for Cappadocia

Selime Monastery