Cappadocia Turkey Travel Guide 2024 (Updated)

Hot Air Balloon in Cappadocia

The “Land of Beautiful Horses” and Fairy Chimneys Turkey Cappadocia

What is famous about Cappadocia?

Cappadocia in Turkey is most famous for its unique geological features and layers of history. It is a moonscape region where man and nature have carved the shapes.

Cappadocia Belloon

Cappadocia in Turkey is the name of the region. The region has been created by the erosion of the soft layers formed by the lava and ashes emitted by the volcanic mountains of Erciyes, Hasandağ (the month Hasan ) and Güllüdağ. Moreover, rain, wind, and ice have shaped them for millions of years.

pasabag-monks-vineyard

How are fairy chimneys in Cappadocia formed?

While the landscape is eroded, basalt stones remains and forms conical structures with some reaching as high as 45 m. The region is still being created over time by erosion of the relatively soft volcanic ash around them. Past cultures dug into them to create dwellings, castles, and even entire underground cities, used as hiding places by early inhabitants.





The local people referred to these unique rock formations as “fairy chimneys”. The name has endured throughout the ages. If nature was the first artist to arrange the decor, it was Anatolian humankind who carved the rock and created Cappadocia as an open-air museum full of unique natural and cultural phenomena.

What food is Cappadocia In Turkey famous for?

Cappadocia means “the land of beautiful horses” as one interpretation of the name Katpatuka. It is the key to the several potential possibilities for exploring and experiencing this fantastic land, from riding to cycling, from exploration to unique cuisine. No matter the season or time of year, Cappadocia has something to offer you.

Cappadocia allows you to leave our planet behind without actually leaving it. The region will blow your mind!



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The Activity In Cappadocia Turkey On The Top of Every Bucket List

You had better be ready for the once in a lifetime experience in a hot air balloon in Cappadocia. This should be a must in your bucket list. Cappadocia in Turkey  offers such unique experiences that you will drown in the choices.

The hot air balloons of Cappadocia are one of the most desired travel activities in the world. Visitors fly above the historical caves of Goreme. The sky will be full with countless balloons during sunrise. It feels like being in an unreal world. You won’t be able to take it out for the rest of your life.

The Things To Know Before Choosing The Hot Air Balloon Company

There are many options as for selecting a company for hot air balloon ride. You should examine the reviews, how long they have been in business, how long the trip takes and the price of course.

The cost of a hot air balloon ride is between 120 USD and 350 USD per person. The price depends on your choice. If you want less people than normal or a private smaller balloon, the price goes higher. You have to pay the full amount when you book your flight.

Cappadocia Balloon




The weather is the most important thing in every kind of flight. Therefore, Your flight can be canceled. If this happens to you, they will put you on another flight the next day. What if it happens again? They will refund the full amount you pay. The prices of the tour include hotel pick-up and drop-off, sometimes a snack to eat before the ride. The tour lasts roughly 60 minutes depending on the company, the pilot and the weather. However, the whole process may take a couple of hours. As we can do everything online, you can book online if you want because it is more convenient and could be cheaper.

HOT AIR BALLOON AVAILABILITY

As we explain above, you should know that the hot air balloons don’t fly everyday. Weather conditions must be perfect for them to lift off and for a safe flight. You had better book your flight for the first morning you’re in Cappadocia. It will give you opportunity to fly in the event. If something with weather goes wrong, they will put you to another flight.

The Morning Before The Adventure

The hustle starts at around 5 am. The tour shuttle picks you up from your hotel and drives to the check-in area. They will give you a simple breakfast and coffee.

As soon as the check-in process has been over, they will assign you to a group and specific pilot/balloon. The groups drives to the launch site. As the flight time comes, you will realize that everyone is excited about the coming flight. The thing you feel in your tummy is not because of the things you eat but because of the curiosity.




When you arrive in the balloon area, it will be dark. However, the flames will lighten up the night while they are filling the balloon with hot air. During this process, you will have the chance to capture good pictures. The scene forming during the inflations of the balloons is something you can’t see everyday.

hot air balloon Cappadocia

You may need wear something thick depending on the season you go but anyway the weather is much cooler up there. The captain gives instructions like how to hold onto the basket, not to bend over, the correct landing position etc.

The flight!

As you climb into the basket, the excitement will reach the climax. The places you stand on can not be changed because of the weight distribution. Nevertheless, you will be able to see the amazing view regardless of your position. The sky will be full of hot air balloons scattered throughout the sky across the unique landscape below.

balloon cappadocia

During the sunrise, there will be opportunities for great pictures of the colorful balloons, futuristic landscape below. Since you will be in the basket naturally, you need a selfie stick to capture yourself and the balloon together.

When the balloon takes off, you will slowly drift off into the sky. You won’t believe your eyes when the pilot fly by the fairy chimneys for you to take amazing photos. The main words said during the ride are generally  “wow, amazing, look!, wooowww”.




Below you will see the most unique land formations such as Deverant Valley, Zelve Valley, Rose Valley, and Red Valley. If you are with a good company, your pilot will show you the valleys and tell you the names of them. It is important because you should be able to review your photos when you get home.

hot air balloon Cappadocia

If you are lucky enough, the weather will be calm so that the pilot can land the ballon on the trailer smoothly. However smooth or hard the landing is, generally pilots gets the applause from the passengers.

What To Do In Cappadocia Turkey?

The Center of Possibilities: Cappadocia

Cappadocia is a beautiful region in central Turkey known for its unique landscape, underground cities, and hot air balloon rides. While hot air balloon rides are certainly a popular activity in Cappadocia, there are many other things to see and do in the region as well. Here is a short text that could be used as an introduction to some of the other activities and attractions in Cappadocia.



Carpets, Rugs and Cappadocia

Cappadocia is center of hand made silk and wool carpets. Sensing the luxury in their textures is truly an experience by itself. You can even witness the astonishing process of silk threads production. The cocoon of the silkworm is carefully unwrapped to present one with the delicate fiber that is silk. The local silk ateliers create a lots of varieties of products from this beautiful and rare fabric. The products range from scarfs to carpets. You deserve to award yourself one of these.

Cappadocia is also center of varied handcrafts. You can join making clay pot for yourself. You will have a chance to have choices of goods from ornamental trinkets to kitchen and table goods. Some clay ateliers pride themselves for their elegant paintings and embellishing custom clay and ceramic goods. A perfect moment for the unforgettable memories of Cappadocia.

Pottery Of Cappadocia

pottery in Cappadocia

Avanos is located 18km from Nevşehir city. She is famous for its tradition of pottery-making having been alive since the times of the Hittites. If you ever wonder whether you can manage, call by at a workshop, and take your position behind the wheel. What is about to happen is totally up to your hands and the power of your imagination. However, don’t worry! Master potters around will give you a helping hand and.

Before the take off time comes, you should not forget to have an example or two of the craftsmen’s work as a reminder of your good time there.

Carpets & Kilims In Cappadocia Turkey

Although many civilizations around the world have cultivated the flatweave technique to create rugs, those practices mostly originate in Central and Western Asia. Many nomadic Turkic tribes passed through Anatolia. They left elements of cultural heritage and know-how behind. However, the tradition of textile weaving might be the one directly taking us on a journey through time.

carpets in cappadocia

Traditional nomadic homes didn’t have furniture. Instead, the tent-residents used to rest on carpet-covered floors on floor cushions and rolls of bedding. These textiles were meant to be light and practical besides beautiful. In winter, they would use the rugs to cover indoor spaces and insulate the room against the cold weather. In the summer, they offered shade and protection from the heat. Kilims and fabrics were also a major part of wealth exchange. Therefore, weaving was usually an important skill for a woman to have not only as leisure activity but also a full-time occupation.

carpets in cappadocia

There are two main types of rugs currently in production in various locations around central Anatolia. First, the kilim (a flat-woven carpet), the oldest of which may have emerged in Çatalhöyük near Konya in 7,000 BC. The second type, halı (knotted rug), is believed to have been introduced by Turkic tribes sometime during the 8th or 9th century.




According to historical evidence, halı (knotted rug) must have made their way to Anatolia during the 12th century. They used kilims to make travel bags and floor cushions. On the other hand, they used halı and rugs to cover the walls and floors of stone houses and tents. This used to make them cozier, and more importantly – warmer.

turkic tent Turkish tent carpets

Between the 12th and 19th centuries, village women wove carpets for private use, turning them into forms of self-expression. Working with their hands, they used exotic natural materials like wool and silk. The design reflected symbols and motifs symbolizing their tribal heritage, hopes and dreams, besides local superstitions. Today, handmade carpets remain in Turkish culture as an art form.

Production of a Turkish Carpet In Cappadocia Turkey

Silk is what makes the Anatolian region of Kayseri stand out among other locations known for rug production. This precious thing is used to make the most exclusive rugs, the purchase of which is a serious investment. The long and complicated silk carpet weaving process starts with washing raw silk, unwound from cocoon, in hot soapy water.

raw silk cappadocia

Once they rinse the thread, they add the dye to the water. Color is a very important element of any carpet or kilim. They are the way to determine the origin of a the item. While factories in Cappadocia in Turkey  today use chemical dyes, in the past, they colored the threads entirely with dyes from roots of various local plants. The recipes were tradesman’s secrets. Therefore, even the use of the same material by different dyers resulted in varying color tones. Moreover, the microclimate and other factors such as soil type also affected the colors.




Dyed thread is divided according to their colour palette and left to dry. Once the threads are ready, they are loaded into looms, and warped according to the desired dimensions of the carpet. Based on the thread’s thickness, the weaving process can take from six months (for a small 30x40cm decorative pieces) to several years (for carpets larger than two square meters).The silk threads are smooth and shiny. Thus, pure silk carpets woven on the weft (horizontal weave), cause an optical illusion of changing colours when rotated 180 degrees. One see same pattern different depending on different angles.

the roots coloring the silk example cappadocia

If the vertical threads (the warp) are thicker than the horizontal ones, it means that they have used two different materials to make the carpet. A pure silk carpet is both very thin and very smooth. Thereby, you can easily slide and spin it on the floor (hence the majority of them are not meant to be walked on, but rather hung on walls or displayed in frames like paintings). On the other hand, blends tend to be more spin-resistant. Thick, soft thread indicates cotton, thick and itchy ones are pure wool.

Staying in a Cave In Cappadocia Turkey

cave hotel cappadocia

Cappadocia in Turkey is a land of natural wonders. There are some unique experiences every traveler wants to experience. One of the most unforgettable experiences is staying at one of Cappadocia’s world famous “cave hotels”. Locals have turned some of the region’s cave houses into luxurious boutique hotels. These hotels offer a real experience of the region’s unique architecture while providing all the modern comfort.

Horseback Riding

horseback riding in cappadocia

Another way to discover Cappadocia in Turkey is horse riding. If you never experience horse riding, riding a horse will another experience you never forget. It will also allow you to closely observe the beautiful details around you. There are many daily horse tours to choose from. There are also multi-day rides around Cappadocia besides full moon rides where you can explore this region at night. It may also a romantic moments with your partner or a fun moment with friends. You can ride through Valley on footpaths where vehicles cannot enter, around fairy chimneys and among village vineyards. You will get the chance to see the most beautiful valleys of Cappadocia such as Meskendir and Güllüdere.



Hiking/Trekking In Cappadocia Turkey

hiking in Cappadocia

Cappadocia is a paradise for nature hikers. Hiking around Cappadocia is a unique experience offering some of the most unreal scenery in the world. There are several popular trails including the Valley of Pigeons near Göreme, the Love Valley, the Rose Valley and the Sword Valley, all of which take a few hours and make you feel like both a time traveler and an adventurer through historic churches, necropolises, beautiful nature and many more. You can also walk longer trails such as the 14 km Ihlara Valley.

The Largest Cathedral In Cappadocia Turkey

Selime Monastery

selime monastery

Selime Monastery is the largest one in Cappadocia. It has two floors and the floors date back to the 8. and 9. centuries. There are depictions such as the ascension of Christ and Mary. Later, you encounter a high corridor at the exit, a part of the caravan route through which people took camels. Since the old market used to set up in Selime, caravans would come here and peoplec  took the camels to the central part of the cathedral for safety. The whole complex’s aim is to house those wanting to rest and worship.




Selime Monastery has many important features and One of them  is that it is the place where they trained the clergy in the region. What is more, they held the first loud ritual in Selime Cathedral. The structures made by carving the rocks and most of them, as churches, still have the traces of Byzantine art. what is more, It is worth to learn that the upper part of the cathedral was a castle against the invaders.

How Can I Go To Selime Monastery In Cappadocia Turkey?

The Selime Monastery is a beautiful and historic site located in Cappadocia, Turkey. If you are planning a visit, here are some options for how to reach the monastery:

By car: If you are driving to Selime Monastery from another part of Cappadocia, you can use a GPS navigation system or a map app to find the best route. The monastery is located about 30 kilometers from the city of Nevşehir. Click here to reach google maps.

By tour: Many tours of Cappadocia include a visit to here. You can book a tour online or through a local travel agency, and the tour operator will handle transportation to and from the monastery.

By public transportation: If you prefer to use public transportation, you can catch a bus from Nevşehir to the village of Selime, which is located near the monastery. From there, you can walk or take a taxi to the monastery.

Ihlara Valley

Ihlara Valley

Who doesn’t want to travel in time? If you are one of those who are curious about time traveling, then Ihlara Valley Cappadocia is the right place for you! The 14-kilometer-long valley has always been an important religious center since the early days of Christianity. It sheds light on the numerous churches and historical living spaces. The frescoed churches formed by the geological features of the region. people carved them into the rocks just like the spirit of the monastery.

You can still visit the architecture while wandering inside the amazing structures. 14 of these churches are open for visit. These are Ağaçaltı, Sümbüllü, Yılanlı, Kokar, Prenliseki, Eğritaş, Direkli, Saint Georgeus, Karagedik, Ala, Bezirhane, Bahattin Samanlığı and Batkın Churches. If you want to see pictures, they takes place at the bottom of this page.




You should be ready before starting your valley walk for 382 step ladder. It may take up to four hours depending on your pace. You should take your time while traveling through the old times. However, you don’t need to worry about time because resting spots on the Melendiz Stream allow you to take breaks and rinse your journey down with a cup of tea.

The Churches in the Ihlara Valley Cappadocia Turkey

To reach the pictures of churches, You can click on the link.

Ağaçaltı Church – Sümbüllü Church – Yılanlı Church – Kokar Church – Eğritaş Church – Direkli Church – St. Georgeus Church – Karagedik Church – Ala ( Alahan) Monastery – Bezirhane Church – Bahattin Samanlığı – Batkın Church

For More Must-See Underground Cities in Cappadocia

If you are interested in Cappadocia, here is the link of the best ways to travel to Cappadocia from Istanbul.



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