Cappadocia travel guide

Whenever you see gorgeous hot air balloons hanging like a chandelier in the sky , in a wallpaper or even a movie, it’s mostly probably from Cappadocia. A cave city in the heart of Turkey, Cappadocia is one city that you should definitely keep in your bucket list. Also known as Kapadokya (the Land of the Beautiful horses), the city’s stunning backdrop of an outback setting, formed with large chimney shaped cave structures is definitely is definitely a lifetime memory. Here’s a Cappadocia Travel guide and everything you need to know about it.

Cappadocia Region Map

History of Cappadocia

A region that dates back to Paleolithic era (and the era of the first man), Cappadocia is believed to have been formed 60 million years ago. Mount Erciyes ‘s volcano rained ashes over the entire region of Cappadocia . These ashes and lava was slowly affected by soil erosion , which created chimney like cave structures across the region.

People then began to start living inside them to protect themselves from wild animals and other invaders from neighboring countries. Till date, the whole region is still kept in its original condition to preserve its rich history .

Cappadocia Travel guide

Cappadocia travel guide : What are the Things to do?

The world famous heritage city is primarily known for its chimneys , hot air balloons & last but not the least : Food!

Here are some of things you can do while in Cappadocia :

Cappadocia Travel guide

Hot Air Balloons :

The world’s #1 place for hot air balloons, ensure the time of visit is suitable for a nice trip in the skies through the gorgeous hot air balloons. Pro Tip : Prebook with your hotel operator, book a 20 seater balloon (as against a 24 seater for a better comfort & view).

Chimneys and Valleys

If not for the hot air balloons, this would have appeared in #1 to be featured in Top things to do in Cappadocia. Cappadocia is filled with valleys having large pointed chimneys , that got formed from the soil erosion from Volcanic ash deposits. Famous spots to visit include : Devrent Valley, Pasabag – Monks Valley, Uchisar Castle, Love Valley, Ilhara Valley & Imagination Valley.

Whirling Dervishes :

Witness the sacred dance form of the Whirling Dervishes (a dance form that traces its roots to this part of the region) . With a Master and his several disciples, get transcended into a journey of blissful Sufi style music as the dancers move into the whirling rhythm. A must do activity ! Your hotel can help you book a slot with a pickup option as well.

Derinkuyu Underground city

One of the most jaw dropping locations in the Goreme region is the Derinkuyu Underground city. A multi level city , completely built underground, the entire community of Hitites used to live in thousands, underneath. They had their own cattle rearing place, worship centers, small schools, well and even a prison , all in the underground city. Walking through these tunnels in these underground cities can definitely give you an amazing experience.

Pottery Town of Avanos

A town famous for its hand crafted pottery & terracotta, Avanos is in the Nevsehir Province in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey , near Cappadocia. The city is very popular among the tour operators and also a mandatory stop.

Cappadocia travel guide & Itinerary

You need a min of 2 days in this city to experience the magical city of Cappadocia in all its glory. Primarily the region can be divided into the South & North . Two major tours are operated , one in each part of the town.

Day 0

Arrive at Cappadocia & Check-in to a Cave Hotel

Day 1:

8AM – Red Tour (North Cappadocia) – Includes Lunch

Cappadocia city guide Imagination Valley
  • Uchisar castle
  • Goreme Open Air Museum
  • Love Valley
  • Avanos
  • Pasabag Monks Valley
  • Devrent Valley
  • Urgup Fairy Chimneys

7PM : Whirling Dervishes

Day 2

5AM – 7AM – Hot Air Balloon Ride

8AM – Green Tour (Southern Cappadocia) – Includes Lunch

  • Ihlara Valley – Involves a Long trekking walk of 3Kms
Cappadocia city guide Ihlara Valley
  • Derinkuyu Underground City – Min walk of 1.5kms underground
  • Pigeon Valley
Cappadocia city guide
  • Crate Lake
  • Goreme Panorama Views

Where to Stay in Cappadocia

There are plenty of Cave Hotels offering amazing cave suites with temperature controlled rooms. One of the most popular ones is Stone House Cave Hotel. The hotel runs most of the tours in Cappadocia with a much cheaper rate. Cost of Cave Room Suite was 4500 / night for 2 ppl.

Cappadocia Travel Costs

  • Flight from Istanbul to Cappadocia – 20 Euros
  • Red Tour & Green Tour : 35 Euros for each tour for one person
  • Hot Air Balloon : 160-170 Euros
  • Cave Hotel Rooms : 50 Euros/night for 2people

For my entire Turkey Tour costs, do check out my Turkey tour itinerary

Must Things to buy in Cappadocia

  • Hot Air Balloon Souvenir
  • Leather Diaries

Do check out my post on Istanbul 3 days itinerary

Please do let me know your thoughts & comments on the Cappadocia travel guide

4 Comments

  1. Cappadocia was my most memorable trip in 2010. I so vividly recall the balloon ride and the amazing whirling dervishes. Wish I could go again now that I take pictures and make videos.

  2. I have always had Cappadocia on my list and I surely want to visit it someday. This is a nice guide, I will bookmark it for my future travel.

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