Cappadocia

Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 04:49 PM
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Cappadocia

Somehow I posted this on the wrong page before.....so sorry if you've already seen it (it's updated now though).

I will be in Turkey from Sat Oct 6 to Monday Oct 15. The focus of my trip is Cappadocia (including one day in Ankara) and when I'm done there will head to Istanbul (but I go there regularly so if I'm having such a great time in Cappa and miss Istanbul this trip, then that is fine).

With up to 8 days I can see a lot and not cram a few things into 2 days like many people. Am looking for some advice keeping in mind that I'm an independent traveler, like to spend more time at some sites than many people do, like to stay centrally and am very athletic. Here is my (long) list of things that interest me:

Urgup
Winery
Good place to stay

Goreme 7 K NW Urgup
Open Air Museum (Karanlik Church, Kilise dark church)
Hike Rose Valley to Pasabagi
Love Valley
Pigeon Valley
Kapadokya Balloons

Cavusin 5K N Goreme
Hike/bike path from Goreme
Hike Red Valley to Urgup

Zelve 6K NE Goreme
Open Air Musuem
Cerikli Church

Uchisar 3K SW Goreme
Uchisar Kalesi
Pigeon Valley to Goreme

Avanos 11K N Goreme
Pottery (somewhat touristy)
Mkt day Friday

Koskonak-
Underground city

Derikuyu 30K S of Goreme
Underground City

Kaymakli 21K S Nevsehir
Underground city although more cramped do D first

Mazikoy
Underground /above ground city - climbing

Ihlara - 110K S Nevsehir
12 K hike one way
Better w/ guide
Hike from Ihlara to Selime
Selime has Monastary and Fortress

Maybe
Ortahisar
Guzelyurt
Soglani Valley
Eski Gemusler Monastery
Konya (combine with a different trip to coast)

A few questions:
1. I don't want to do a tour (other than to Ihara) so I'm a bit concerned about travel - how reliable is the dolmus in early-mid oct? Would biking to some of the destinations that are close to each other be great or awful?

2. Goreme sounds like an unappealing place to stay but it seems more convenient than Urgup since you can walk to a few places from there - thereby reducing the transport issue. Thoughts on this tradeoff?

3. Other than Ihara, is there anything else that is better with a guide/tour?

4. Is ballooning really worth 230 Euros?

5. Any other suggestions?

Thanks!
Susan
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 05:10 PM
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Esbelli Evi in Ugrup was a highlight of the many places we stayed in Turkey. Found it via other recommendations here on Fodors.

You mention the 'transportation' issue. We really enjoyed driving around from place to place at will in Cappodocia with a car. I really don't know how dependable other transporatation is. We actually "picked up" another couple staying at Esbelli Evi who went with us one day exploring. Another couple had no transport and ended up hooking up with another couple who had hired a guide -- so they joined forces.

Is the ballooning really worth all that money? We've ballooned elsewhere, but Cappodocia will always remain the best in my mind. Yes -- it's really a remarkable experience.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 05:39 PM
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Thanks Patrick. The Esbelli Evi is booked but I think the Serinn is available - it sounds very nice also.

Re the car, that definitely would give me the most flex. However, I don't know how to drive a standard (lame I know but I've never even owned a car so I don't drive frequently). I just checked Avis (thinking they might have automatics) and they are sold out that week!

I really want to go ballooning so I think I will (there are some other places that are recommended and considered safe but are slightly cheaper so will have to figure that out).
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 07:30 PM
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Susan: My wife and I are avid hikers and will be going to Cappadocia next year. If you find some especially appealing hikes, please report back to us!
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 11:25 PM
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You have to read this members blog page !!

http://chocolateachuva.blogspot.com/

Especially with the very colorful and descriptive views of balloning and hiking in Cappadocia. With wonderful photos as well. I certainly could not describe it any better.

Reading this report makes me long for a return visit as it has been over 8 years since I last visited the Cappadocia area.
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Old Oct 3rd, 2007, 02:41 AM
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Sounds like a great trip! We spent a week in Cappadocia this summer and just loved it and you will be glad that you are giving it more time.

We decided not to go on the balloon ride and friends who went on it did not think it was worth the money. Many people do love it tho.

We adored staying at the Esbelli Evi which was a highlight, but it is far from the action.

We also stayed at the Local Hotel in Gorem which we enjoyed. Great location, pool was an asset for us with a kiddo and the food was fabulous at the restaurant next door.

If I had to do it again, I would also stay at one of the French places in Uchisar. Yes, the moving is a pain, but the different areas and variations on cave houses is special and I think worth it.

We enjoyed the pottery even if it was somewhat touristy and we were the only ones there which made it nice. My daughter LOVED doing a little on the pottery wheel and hubby too.

We found Goreme a great place to stay and the location can not be beat. We did one day of a private tour with the manager from Local Cave House that might be something you might consider. He will take you where ever you want to go.

Turkey and Cappadocia is unbelievable at meeting your every whim and need. They do service and hospitality like no place else on the planet. What ever you want...ask.

We found the underground cities better with a tour, but picked up a private one when we arrived.

Look to our blog under archives for info on our month in Turkey which may be a help to you:

http://www.soultravelers3.com/

Have a great time!! I think you are very smart to give it more days than most.
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Old Oct 3rd, 2007, 04:04 AM
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Hi Susan,
Thinking to allow yourself this much time to Cappadocia is great as it will give you opportunity to go in depth and localize better.
Travelling around with Dolmus may not always the convenient possibility. Hiring a car will give you more fredom for sure. There are other options for an automatic transmitted rental car.
Adding Mustafapasa to your itinerary highly recommended.

If you wish to get advice and documentation please send me an e-mail for adress of my office and you are most welcome if you like to drop by when in Urgup.

Have a great time and happy travelling in Cappadocia,

Murat
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