The best thing to do after a few hard days activity is to visit the Cappadocia area. Cappadocia lies 80 km from the Aladaglar and its soft volcanic fairy chimneys and bizarre rock structures harbor ancient churches, houses and vast underground cities carved into the rock. It is an enchanting place to visit.
How Cappadocia came to be: Cappadocia means “The land of beautiful horses” in the Persian language. The area was formed 60 million years ago when the Erciyes, Mount Hasan and Mount Güllü volcanoes erupted and scattered their ashes onto this area.
This layer of ashes was shaped by wind and water forming the structures that arte visible to this day. People have inhabited this area since the Paleolithic period. The area was also inhabited by the Hittites and later on became an important center for Christianity.The houses and churches carved into the rock became a vast and valuable refuge for Christians.The Cappadocia region is rich in nature and history.The fairy chimneys formed over centuries by rain and wind where later carved out to be used as homes and churches and where richly decorated with frescoes that are still visible today.
The written history of Cappadocia starts with the arrival of the Hittites. An important city on the silk route, this region was home to many trading colonies and a center for international trade. Today the area is a popular tourist destination. The main sights to worth visiting are:
Avanos, Ürgüp, Göreme, Ak Vadi, Uçhisar and Ortahisar, the El Nazar church,
Güvercinlik valley, Aynalı church, Selime village, the Derinkuyu, Kaymaklı and Özkonak underground cities, Ihlara valley, Güllüdere valley, Paşabağ and Zelve.
The houses, pigeonholes and churches carved out of the rock are typical of this region. The region is also famous for its vineyards and wine production.
The Balloon festival begins very early in the morning,
before sunrise. That’s because at that time of the day,
the air is very still. After the sun rises from behind
Mt. Erciyes, it starts to warm you up. At that time, it is
like a festival in Cappadocia. The shadows of more
than a hundred hot air ballons mix with those of the
fairy chimneys, as you tour along the valleys in this
“land of beautiful horses”. It’s such an extraordinary
Hot Air Ballooning in Cappadocia
Booking a Balloon Flight:
If you wish to experience this unique flight, we
recommend booking 3-4 days prior. You may book
your flight through Aladaglar camping.
Ihlara valley was formed by a river that carved its way through the soft layer of volcanic ashes. The Melendiz river formed a 14 km long and 110 m deep valley over a period of millions of years. The depth of the valley gives one the impression of walking through a canyon. The volcanic rock on both sides of the valley has many dwellings, churches and tombs carved into the rock. The churches in the valley where decorated between the 6th and 13th century. Some dwellings and churches are connected connected to each other by underground passages.
Cappadocia, The country of beautiful horses covers a very large area. Even the shortest visit should not be less than 2 days. Another way to see this area is from the sky, several hot air ballooning companies offer sunrise tours over the area.