Göreme, Cappadocia — Definitely Worth It

It’s around 6am when we get into Göreme, Cappadocia, and I have that baleful air that’s only acquired after a long and painful overnight bus journey.

But, as I open my eyes for probably the hundredth time that night and try, yet again, to shrug the ache out of my back and shoulders, I hear a low roaring sound.

And then I see them…

Rising steadily into the sky, tens upon tens of giant balloons, all setting out on their sunrise flights over Göreme, ballooning in Cappadocia

“Zac!” I nudge my spawn. “Wake up! We’re here. And the sky’s full of balloons…”

I’ve travelled in over 50 countries on six continents, and Göreme, Cappadocia, is one of the most surreal places I’ve ever visited.

Even after Coober Pedy, Mount Kinabalu, the Painted Lakes, it simply leaves my jaw on the floor.

In fact, even at 6am with no place to stay, I’m grinning like an absolute fool.

Zac, too. (And, let it be written, neither of us are morning people.)

View of vanilla icecream mountains and phallic cave houses in Göreme, Cappadocia.

Because, even more so than Coober Pedy, Göreme looks like another planet. It’s ridiculous.

There are huge “fairy chimneys”, or, as Zac calls them “phairy phalluses”, sprouting everywhere we look, great pinnacles erupting out of nowhere, valley walls soft and white as scooped meringue…

And the town is framed by old cave houses, troglodyte dwellings carved out of the soft tuff rock and expanded over the generations – some of them in ruins, some of them inhabited, many of them hotels.

It is, absolutely, cool as fuck. Crazy, beautiful, cool as fuck.

View of swirling rock formations and pinnacles in Göreme, Cappadocia.

It’s 6am, I’m craving coffee like a zombie thirsts for brains, and nowhere, but nowhere is open, I’m wondering if a night on a non-reclined seat has actually pulled a muscle, and I’m actively looking forward to wandering around town looking for a nice cave hotel.

Ideally, obviously, for no more than 20p. I mean, high season, Göreme, cave hotel, that’s not going to be expensive, right? It’s not like this is arguably Turkey’s largest indie travel destination outside Istanbul.

Oh. Wait…

View over Göreme, Cappadocia.

A guy at a coffee shop kindly allows us to sit in their garden, so I dump Zac and the bags there and set off in quest of our perfect cave.

Y’know. I’ve got a guidebook. I’ve had a look on the interwebz.

But, I kind of want to wander round, get a feel for the place, and find somewhere special for a couple of nights…

Doorway frames views of Cappadocian Valleys, Göreme, Cappadocia.

Can’t be hard, right?!

8 Responses

    • Theodora says:

      Oh, wow, we jinxed each other… We went to the Star Wars location. It will be in another post. So much to write about Cappadocia!

  1. Jenn says:

    I’ve never heard of that place. It looks crazy cool. I hope you post more pictures.

    • Theodora says:

      Wait until we go ballooning! Cappadocia as a whole is absolutely amazing, and I have a bunch of photos just waiting to be tended 😉

  2. Ainlay says:

    Glad to hear you sound a lot happier in Turkey than in Egypt. When you are excited about a place – you really make me want to visit it! (Only place I’ve been to in Turkey is Istanbul which I loved).

  3. It looks really cool, It looks all sort of Star Wars-y, haven’t been, but it’s definitely on my list!

    • Theodora says:

      They actually filmed part of Star Wars a 100k away or so, Kate…. We drove to the location, now need to match it to the film.