Best Day Tours from Istanbul to Cappadocia are more akin to a psychedelic fairytale, with honeycombed hills and towering boulders offering a glance of beauty that looks more at home in a sci-fi fantasy land.
If you find yourself on vacation in Istanbul, make sure to enhance your experience with a day trip to Cappadocia. Whether you’re an admirer of hikes, a lover of natural beauty, or merely want something different from the hustle and bustle of Istanbul, a trip to Turkey’s Goreme valley should be high up on your list.
You can visit the following places on a day trip with a local private guide.
Goreme Open-Air Museum: The Goreme Open-Air Museum is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the main attractions in Cappadocia. It was once an important Byzantine monastic settlement uses to house monks. Today, you can see many refectory monasteries placed side-by-side. Each one comes with its own fantastic church, and the museum is located just 15 minutes from Goreme village centre.
Derinkuyu: Derinkuyu was one of the largest underground cities in the world and housed up to 20,000 people at one stage. The ancient underground city was only discovered in 1963 after a Turkish resident knocked down the wall to his house, only to find a hidden, ancient 18-storey city that had been there for several million years.
Kaymakli Underground City: Derinkuyu isn’t the only underground city in Cappadocia. In fact, there are some 36 underground sites, each one with a unique tale to tell. Kaymakli Underground City features many subterranean passages and chambers with living quarters, stables, kitchens and cellars. This well-preserved city was once home to Christians who sought refuge from persecution.
Red Valley and Rose Valley: If it’s romantic sunsets that you’re after, Red Valley and Rose Valley have you covered. Their names come from the pinkish red-coloured rock that changes colour throughout the day. Their position makes Red Valley and Rose Valley ideal for sunsets, as they sit where the sun beams down and often provide a pink colour on the rocks that they shine off.
Ortahisar: A charming town in the Cappadocia region, Othahisar is picturesque and full of fun things to do during one of your day trips from Istanbul to Cappadocia. Ortahisar Castle is like nothing you have ever seen with its rock formation dominating over the town. The Ethnographic and Culture Museum features a handful of displays that portray historical life in Cappadocia.
Pigeon Valley: Known for its many human-made dovecotes (Pigeon Houses) that were carved into the volcanic tuff, Pigeon Valley is one of the most popular attractions in Cappadocia. A favourite with hikers, Pigeon Valley is a top spot for walking around and seeing the beauty of Cappadocia first hand.
Devrent Valley: While humans inherited most of the valleys in Cappadocia, Devrent Valley remained people-free. As a result, there are no churches or castles. Instead, visitors can expect to find pink-hued rock formations and geological anomalies that are the result of centuries of erosion. The rocks form pillar-like shapes and other odd shapes, which makes for a great picture or two.
Pasabag: Also known as Monks Valley, Pasabag is noted for its fairy chimneys. Visitors will find an unusual, almost moon-like landscape that has remarkable formations. They’re called fairy chimneys because early inhabitants of the area believed they were chimneys for the fairies who lived underground.