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.
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.)
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.
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.
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…
Can’t be hard, right?!