The landscape created by erosion and volcanic eruptions in Cappadocia, Turkey, is unlike anything I had seen before. And civilizations back in the day took advantage of this and created underground cities and caves to live in.
Göreme is the usual pick for tourists to stay in. It was mine as well, and although it’s a very tiny town, the upside is that from here you get to walk to the Göreme Open Air museum, take hiking tours and more.
The Göreme Open Air Museum was created during the early days of Christianity and served as a monastery. It was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 and for 15 Liras entrance fee, it’s definitely worth checking out. Inside you will find caves that were turned into churches that still preserve wall paintings that narrate stories from the bible and the life of Jesus.
To see the rest of what Cappadocia has to offer, such as the underground cities and various valleys you can take guided tours. Essentially there are 3 tours (red, green and blue) which cover different areas. If you are looking to visit and enter most of the sites, taking a tour that includes the entrance fees will turn out to be cheaper that doing it on your own. If you are staying in Göreme though, the red tour route is easily do-able on foot.
But if you are looking for a bit more of an adventure you can rent an ATV or scooter and explore on your own. I was lucky to have a travel partner that could drive a scooter, so we rented out one for a day for 80 Liras. It was the best way for us to see the sites at our own pace and the most fun too. We visited the nearby town of Avanos, the rose and pigeon valley and more.
Make sure you also check out the hiking routes! The day we set out to do it, it looked like a big storm was coming our way so we got scared to get in too deep in the valleys, but we heard it’s amazing.
I also took a hot air balloon ride during my stay in Göreme, but even doing so many things in the area, 3 full days there was a bit too much for me.