Day 1 - Cappadocia - (L)
Around 9:00 AM, we will meet you at your hotel and take you on your full-day tour visiting Cappadocia's most famed sites.
* Underground City of Derinkuyu: You'll gradually make your way down into the depths of the earth of this ancient settlement that has 18-20 floors which boast depths as long as 40 meters. (Don't worry, we'll only go down to the 8th floor!) Youll marvel at the fact that Derinkuyu is just one of 36 Cappadocian underground cities, which archaeologists date back to the time of the Hittites around 4,000 years ago.
Timeless Derinkuyu will leave you with a sense of awe of how the dwellers of these cities lived. As you wind your way down, you will begin to feel as if you are in a maze of epic proportions. Everywhere you look, there will be nooks and crannies carved into the rocks: holes, windows , paths, alleys, little rooms. You will see ancient kitchens and stables; storage jars for oil, wine and water; rock-carved tables, chairs, and beds; and deep wells for water. You will be amazed at the elaborate ancient ventilation the residents constructed.
* Ihlara Valley is an oasis in the middle of the Anatolian plain. We'll explore this canyon and take in the beautiful green scenery as we stroll alongside the river. Here, you'll see ancient monasteries complete with pigeon holes carved into the cliffs by the monks; the pigeons acted as messengers to communicate with neighboring monks!
Ihlara is a 16-km -long gorge cut into volcanic rock and is the result of several eruptions of Mount Erciyes. The whole canyon is honeycombed with rock-cut underground dwellings and churches from the Byzantine period.
The early Chistians escaping from Roman soldiers hid here, and there are hundreds of antique churches carved in the volcanic rocks.
* Traditional Anatolian village: You'll see head-scarved women in the fields (where they work from sun up until sundown) and the mustachioed, vest-wearing men hard-at-work playing cards or tavla (backgammon) in the kahvehane (coffee shop). You'll get time to stroll in a village such as this and see the average Turkish villager at work...or play.
This marks the end of your tour; we'll transfer you back to your hotel.
Total cost: 45 Euro per person - (ask for early booking discounts)
* All land transfers with comfortable vehicles
* 1 lunch (in a traditional restaurant)
* Professional, English-speaking tour guides
* Admission to Derinkuyu
* All taxes and service charges
* Drinks with meals