Many visitors on tours of Turkey will focus their holidays on the population centers of Istanbul and Ankara, but after you’ve explored these where should you aim for? Even well-seasoned travellers to the country will find new Turkey tours offering new sights and experiences – not least the rock cut churches and underground cities of Cappadocia.
One of the most popular ways to enjoy Turkey tours in the Cappadocia region is by getting a bird’s-eye view from a hot-air balloon over the region. Famously lunar and alien in its appearance, the Cappadocia region has become one of Turkey’s most impressive natural wonders. Formed by the eruption of volcanoes around 60 million years ago, it was slowly sculpted by the gradual erosion of the wind and rain.
Of particular interest to those who take Turkey tours to Cappadocia are the towering rock pillars known as fairy chimneys, the enchanting underground cities, and the hundreds of churches that have been hewn from the natural rock.
Göreme is an interesting spot and an essential inclusion on the itinerary of Turkey tours to the Cappadocia region. Known as Korama in the oldest documents, the town is close to the Göreme Open Air Museum, a highly regarded UNESCO World Heritage Site. This incredible museum is home to many churches and monasteries carved into the rock, many featuring examples of Byzantine art, especially paintings on the walls and ceilings of the churches.
Derinkuyu is just one of the many other popular tourist destinations in Cappadocia, and equally worth seeing. One of the world’s deepest and most elaborate underground cities, it consists of at least eight layers carved into the volcanic rock. As you explore, walking through the labyrinthine passages almost crouched double, it’s hard to imagine large numbers of people using these extraordinary settlements that include multiple stories of living accommodation with storage areas, kitchens, wine presses and much more.
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