Turkey: Cappadocia

★★★★★

Visiting Turkey would not be complete without stepping foot in this extraordinarily unique landscape. A veritable must-see.  I reached Cappadocia via public bus from Pamukkale.

Recommended Stay: At least 3 days.

Day 1: Cappadocia: Goreme & Hiking the Red and Rose Valleys

★★★★★

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The bus that I was on attempted to drop us off at Nevsehir, which was about 30 minutes away from Goreme. The other tourists and I complained about this so the bus begrudgingly caved into our request to be taken straight to the center of Goreme town. I arrived at around 5am. I had a glimpse of hot air balloons ascending into the air space surrounding Goreme.  Breathtaking.

I stayed at Rock Valley Hostel. I was extremely satisfied with the place. It has a pool and the rock formations as its backyard. Incredibly stunning.  After depositing my luggage at the hotel, I quickly went on an independent hike along the Red and Rose Valleys. I was pretty impressed with how I finished the hike all by myself especially that there were virtually no one else on the trails, except for occasional encounters with a few hikers.

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Credits: Turco Travel

At the end of the hike was the small town of Cavusin. I finished the hike late afternoon so there were no public buses available anymore. Thankfully, I was able to hitchhike back to Goreme. Before sunset, I hiked up a very famous viewpoint in the center of Goreme. It was about a 5-minute walk from the main drag, and an excellent way to view the surrounding towns with a marvelous sunset as its backdrop. Breathtakingly spectacular.

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Sunset in Goreme
Sunset in Goreme

Day 2: Cappadocia: Hot Air Balloon & Goreme Open Air Museum

★★★★★

Weather permitting, the hot air balloon ride is the ultimate unmissable experience in Cappadocia. Departing early in the morning daily, this is the best vantage point to capture a magnificent wide-view lens of this unique Turkish landscape.

After the balloon ride, I independently explored the Goreme Open Air Museum which boasts astonishingly well-preserved frescoes from the 10th-12th centuries housed inside monasteries carved from the mountains.

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Incredibly preserved frescoes

 Day 3: Cappadocia: Green Tour

★★★★★

The Green Tour is one of the most popular day trips originating from Goreme. It includes the following sites:

  • Derinkuyu Underground City
  • Ihlara Valley
  • Selime Monastery
  • Pigeon Valley vista point

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After visiting Cappadocia, I continued eastward towards Mt. Nemrut and eventually Kurdistan.


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