Cappadocia, Turkey II

Friday, December 31, 2010

Although I already wrote about it here, here's a few more quick interesting facts about Cappadocia:

- The crazy landscape might look familiar. The Sand People scene in the first Star Wars movie was filmed here.

- Early Christians, possibly including Saint Paul, fled here in the 2nd century AD before Christianity was accepted. They fled Roman and later Muslim persecution by hiding in the caves, twisted valleys, peaks, and underground cities of the region.

- 200 years later, monasticism began here. Saint Basil encouraged hermit communities to form. They abandoned their homes and led chaste, reflective lives here in poverty. 

- Cappadocia is mentioned twice in the Bible [Acts 2:6-111 Peter 1:1-2]. Cappadocians were among those present on the first day of Pentecost.

- Estimated number of cave churches: 1000

- Number of underground cities: 40 (maybe more.. still being discovered)

- Most famous tourists: Alexander the Great and Marco Polo

-The wild rock formations were created by volcanic eruptions and then smoothed by wind and rain.

-Many of the rock towers have caps and are called fairy chimneys or mushrooms. Some locals believe angels put them there.

-Cappadocia is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

- Julia

P.S. Still a few more posts from Cappadocia... the Open Air Museum (which houses many early cave churches), a Turkish dance night, and our nature walk through Rose Valley. This is one of those magical  places where you simply can't put the camera down.

Eating a traditional pottery kebab.
Surprised to find that rug weaving by hand still exists!
One of the nicest hotels in the area: Anatolian Houses


  1. I did think it looked a bit familiar. Pretty awesome about Star Wars! Thanks for the bit of history... and happy new year!! I hope your celebration in China, I believe is where you are right now, was something truly memorable and fantastic!

  2. i could just look at your pictures all day. absolutely beautiful! and how cool is that soup/chili looking meal in the clay pot! have a happy new year!

  3. I can tell you truly adore this place and I can see why!

  4. Your blog and photos are really wonderful. Thanks for sharing your travels.

  5. your photos are so, so gorgeous! i hope you don't mind, but i reblogged here:

  6. Your hotel was not far from mine. I loved the place so much, I want to move there!!

  7. i love the rugs! did you get a chance to look at the prices?

  8. Thanks for the positive words.

    Sarah- So awesome of you to share about our travels on your blog. Thank you.

    Natalie- I wouldn't mind living there for a bit. It feels like going back in time, doesn't it?

    Maylee- Yes, they are freakishly expensive! But they are made by hand and take ages to complete, so I can see why. A tiny rug about 2x4'' was $200 and the large room-size rugs were around $20,000. We didn't bother shopping around after we heard those prices from the first guy. I would love to own one someday.

  9. hi Julia and Yuriy! you guys are awesome for responding to comments! So much for wishful thinking. I thought it would be cheaper to buy directly from the artisans. I just discovered your blog, but would have loved to meet up with you when you were in Paris. Your images are really creative and inspirational! btw, have you ever thought of doing photography workshops?

  10. Maylee- Yes, as did I! Especially in a country where everything is cheaper compared to home. Ah, such a bummer we missed each other in Paris. We would have loved some guidance... we found that so few people in Paris spoke English! We have done a couple small, really beginner workshops back home to see how it'd go and hoping to do something a little more advanced and planned out in the future. Would you come? :)

  11. I would love to, but unfortunately it's not in the budget. (yes, we actually have a budget that my husband (the accountant) sticks to.) if you ever plan one in paris, i'll do my best to put it in the budget!