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Review: Cappadocia

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Cappadocia, Turkey

An unforgettable experience

  • By SilverTraveller SilverTravelUser_4561

    1 review

  • April 2008
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4 people found this review helpful

Turkey is as intricate and colourful as the patterns of a Turkish carpet, myth and legend interwoven with the history of six civilisations shape the background of this fascinating country; the scenery is stunning, the people are incredibly friendly and the food is out of this world. It is also a land with a magnificent past, everywhere you turn you stumble across relics of ancient civilisations.

If there were 8 natural wonders of the world instead of 7 then surely Cappadocia would be the 8th. A land of mystery and wonderment. A visit to Cappadocia is an unforgettable experience, whether it’s during the heat of the summer or in the snows of winter, it’s a magical land unequalled anywhere else on earth. A reasonable level of fitness and mobility would be advisable to make the most of your visit.

Volcanoes originally formed Cappadocia, then earthquakes and erosion through millions of years shaped it into the form it is today.

On a visit to Cappadocia make a stop at the city of Konya, an important Muslim centre in Turkey. You will be made welcome at the Museum dedicated to Mevlana, the founder of the Whirling Dervishes religious sect where you can see the smallest Koran in the world, intricate glassware and so much more.

On arrival in Cappadocia there are so many wonderful sights to see including the ‘ice cream’ valley where all the rock formations look like the swirling ice cream of a Mr Whippy cone. Imagination valley – the name says it all – is that a camel or a cockerel? One rock pinnacle that is instantly recognisable is the Virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus, and the fairy chimneys are unmistakeable – should we call it Bedrock – will Fred Flintstone come whistling round a boulder?

Take a trip to the Goreme open-air museum, an abandoned village where the brave can climb to the top inside the carved out monastery. All the houses too, are carved out of the rock

Go down into one of the underground cities, carved out of the rocks by the early civilisations when they wanted to hide from marauding persecutors, up to 15000 people lived in these cities, with all their animals, for up to 3 – 4 months at a time, even keeping their dead in temporary graveyards until such times as it was safe for them to emerge into the outside world again. The cities go down many levels yet the air is never stale, an incredible feat of engineering in ancient times.

The early Christians also carved their churches out of the rocks, there are some 365 churches with decorations from the very simple to the most elaborate story of Christ. But no matter which churches you visit you will find that the colours of the paintings are as beautiful today as when they were originally painted hundreds of years ago.

There is no doubt that on a holiday to Turkey a trip to Cappadocia is definitely worth the effort.

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