Highlights of Cappadocia, Turkey

One night and most of two days is the absolute minimum for a visit to Cappadocia. (It’s not worth it to stop here for just one day.)

Two nights is a short visit, and you’ll need three nightsand full days to see all the top sights on the list below.

More time—four nights to a week—is even better, allowing you to go off the beaten track, take some of the good hikes, dine in more of the restaurants, and go even farther afield, such as to Aladağ National Park.

Göreme Open-Air Museum

This compact valley filled with beautiful medieval painted churches is the No. 1 sight in Cappadocia, which means that it’s usually crowded, its small churches filled with visitors. You need to plan your visit. More…

Uçhisar Rock Castle

The highest point in Cappadocia is a natural fortress now penetrated by tunnels and steps that take you right to the top. It’s well worth seeing, both for itself and for the spectacular panoramic views from its dangerous summit. More…

Underground Cities

In the southern reaches of Cappadocia, these honeycombs of dwellings underground are simply fantastic. A must-see! You can tour one or more on the same day you visit the Ihlara Valley. More…

Ihlara Valley

A river runs along this dramatic narrow canyon where medieval Byzantine monks carved monastic cave churches and painted them with Biblical scenes. You can walk as much or as little as you want, making it a stop on a day excursion, or a full day’s hike. More…

Zelve Valley

Set conveniently near Çavuşin between Göreme Townand Avanos, Zelve’s churches are not in as good condition as Göreme‘s, but they are less crowded: climb among the rocks as you like! More…

Devrent Valley

Look at the rock shapes here: pinnacles, bulbs, sensuous shapes, one that reminds you of a camel—Devrent has some of the most fantastic natural rock sculpture in Cappadocia.

Paşabağ Valley

The fairy chimneys in “the Pasha’s Vineyard” are of tawny tufa topped by denser, darker rock caps—a dramatic contrast. Stop here on your way to the Zelve Valley and walk among the weird cones and columns. More…

Soğanlı Valleys

The Upper and Lower Soğanlı valleys of southern Cappadocia, about 36 km (22 miles) south of Mustafapaşa, are great if you want to do some Cappadocian cave-church exploring off the beaten path. At Soğanlı (soh-AHN-luh), you may have hiking trailschurches and weird dovecotes to yourself. More…

Hot-Air Balloon Flight

Among the most popular activities in Cappadocia, with as many as 90 hot-air balloonsall in the morning sky at the same time, a hot-air balloon flight lets you see the entire moonscape of Cappadocia as the birds do—or the angels. More…

Hiking Cappadocia

If a hot-air balloon flight is the best way to see it all, a hike or walk on one of Cappadocia’s many scenic trails is the way to see the moonscape in detail. More…

Towns of Cappadocia

Each of Cappadocia’s towns has its allure and attractions. All are worth a stop, some are worth some wandering, and at least one will be your base for exploring the region. More…

Aladağ National Park

The Kapuzbaşı Waterfalls (Kapuzbaşı Şelalesi) in Aladağlar National Park south of Cappadocia and east of Niğde, are among Turkey’s most unusual: the seven waterfalls spurt right from a solid-rock cliff face. More…

—by Tom Brosnahan


Tours of Cappadocia

Towns of Cappadocia

About Cave Rooms

Best Cave Hotels

About Cappadocia Hotels

Cappadocia Transport

About Cappadocia

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