After an overnight bus ride we arrive in Göreme at 7.30am, the main tourist town within the area of Cappadocia.
Driving into Göreme, the sky is filled with hundreds of hot air balloons. The number one tourist activity offered, for a staggering €100 per person.
After being pointed in the direction of the campsite we’d found, the ‘Campsite’ informs us they don’t take campers.
We end up stumbling upon a very cute Hotel/hostel called Paradise Cave Hotel which offers us 25TL each including breakfast and a double room.
Cappadocia is situated 1200 metres above sea level, the pointed rocks formed during the ice age, and were previously inhabited by the Herodotus civilisation who used the rocks as cave houses.
Throughout Cappadocia there are multiple valleys, the closest one to us is Rose Valley situated a short 15 minute walk from our hostel.
Göreme is one of those places you walk round with your mouth gaping open as you try to take in the bizarre scenery.
Walking amongst Rose Valley we were half expecting JaJa Binx to jump out. Later finding out that Cappadocia inspired the set for Star Wars, not surprising as it does seem ‘out of this world’!!
The terrain almost desert like, plus there was a dry heat bellowing down on us as we ambled amongst the giant rocks.
The rocks themselves varied in size, some with windows some with stairs etched in the sides showing which ones were previously used as houses and are hollowed out. Dan entered one of the cave houses that wasn’t closed in, and was showed round by a local, I stupidly wore my jellies so couldn’t climb up. He was shown through the five stories within the cave, each level having to heave oneself up through a circular hole in the roof. This was because in the Herodotus period, the area was frequently raided, so if attacked, huge round stones could block each level.
The following day we walked to Love Valley, about a 1 hour walk from the hotel.
On entering the valley a sign explains that the name comes from the phallic shaped rocks which fill the valley…
Basically, a valley full of giant rock willies!!!
We decided to cut our time in Göreme short due to finding it a wee bit too touristy and expensive.
The scenery is amazing, but we did find that once we’d seen one valley, they all seemed very similar and in order to get to any of the valleys further away you had to get a tourist bus or hire a motorbike or scooter. Also, the town of Göreme is exceptionally touristy, food and accommodation is expensive, making it hard to stick to a budget. Dan and I managed to do one night, two full days including food and a scarf each, on 130TL, with no cost spent on tourism activities.
An amazing place to visit, truly memorable.