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Excursion to Cappadocia in Turkey

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Nature tried to glory in the central part of Anatolia, where Cappadocia was located: the volcanoes left millions of years ago the unusual beauty of rocks, pillars, valleys, caves. Man used natural changes for his own purposes, creating cities under the earth, monasteries, churches in caves.

A beautiful translation of the name of the area from the Persian "Land of Beautiful Horses" speaks of the presence of a large number of graceful animals here. Cappadocia gave the world famous educators, many saints. Famous Cappadocians: Saints George and Longinus, enlighteners Vulfil, Nino Cappadocian, Grigory the Illuminator, developers of the doctrine of the Trinity, gave us the Christmas holiday - Grigory Nyssa, Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian.

Flipping through the pages of the past

Mention of Cappadocia and its inhabitants is met even before our era. Justin in the summary of Pompey Trog "The History of Philip" (about 1 century BC - 1 century AD) tells of the young representatives of the royal dynasty - Pline and Scolopite, deported from their native lands and settled off the coast of Cappadocia Pontic, having won The Temmischer Plain. Their stay here ended pitifully: the robbed tribes lured the abusers into an ambush and destroyed them.

We also meet in the Bible about the Cappadocians who were once present at the Cathedral, on which the Holy Spirit unexpectedly descended upon the apostles. In the First Epistle of St. Petra also mentioned the country of Cappadocia (Ch. 1, st.1).

In the 5 thousand years. BC. the historical past of Cappadocia begins. Hittites, Medes, Persians, Romans and Ottomans ruled here at the time. In 350 BC. Ariarat II founded the kingdom of Cappadocia. In 17 years the country was conquered by Alexander the Great. In 302 BC. Ariarat II defeats Amintu, expels the Greeks, restores his power. Kingdoms division occurred before 255 BC. Ariary III. In the 3rd century BC. the country was divided into 10 small provinces.

More than once Cappadocia became a field for battles in numerous wars. In 193, Ariarat III fought against the Romans. The truce with them occurred in 189-187 BC. e.

Demetrius expels Ariarat from the kingdom, but in 160-153 by decree of the Senate he returns to the throne. Ariarata IV on the throne is replaced by Pontus.

A bloody inhuman event occurred during the rule of Laodike, the widow of Ariarat V: she killed five sons in order to remain on the throne. In 130-129 the country was in charge of the power, transferring power to the sixth son - Ariarat VI.

The sale of slaves in Cappadocia was one of the main sources of income. The kings of Bithynia and Cappadocia supplied slaves to the market of the island of Delos, from where the slaves went to Rome.

In the year 93 BC. e. Armenians conquered Cappadocia. In 17 AD. The Roman Empire made it its province. The Seljuks came to the country in 1087. To the Ottoman Empire, Cappadocia was annexed in 1515.

In 400 years, the Armenian population is being destroyed. In 1923 the Greeks were deported from the country. The structure of the Turkish Republic of Cappadocia enters in 1919, the official accession took place in 1923.

At the moment the district is divided between the provinces Nevsehir, Aksaray, Kayseri, Nigde.

Fantastic valleys, mysterious caves, underground cities

Bypassing the sights of Cappadocia in a reasonable time is not possible: tourists are offered a trip on scooters or in a hot air balloon. The territory is large, the terrain is hilly and is not suitable for hiking (you will understand what is at stake, seeing everything with your own eyes). Let's say some of the most famous places in Cappadocia.

Valley Derwent. The imagination of the person standing in front of her will paint the silhouettes of animals and objects that somehow appeared here.

Valley of love. Unusual mountains, strange cones, erotic (according to the locals) poles, mushrooms with hats. This valley is also called "Land of the Moon Landscapes", "Lost World".

The Cappadocia Valley. It is about 70 million years old, the frozen eruption of volcanoes with deep cracks, lava with geological rocks. Unusual rocks are real works of art of nature, formed as a result of weathering of volcanic rocks.

Valley of pigeons. The length of about 4 km, it is located between Goreme and Uhchasar (the highest point of Cappadocia). Fertile soils were not enough, and the population decided to receive fertilizer from pigeons and bred them here in the rocks. Special minerals attracted birds, so the valley is strewn with windows-nests.

Cities in the rock are another creation of nature in tandem with man. The most famous is the city of Chavushin. In ancient times, runaway Christians lived here, then the Turks drove them away and lived here until the earthquake of 1953. The place became the center of pilgrimage: the cave church of St. John the Baptist (5th century AD). The cemetery of Chavushin also strikes: many were in 100 years. In Cappadocia, about 50 underground cities.

The city under the land Derinkuyu - the largest, leaving deep into 85 meters (lived here about 50 thousand people). Had about 20 floors, only 8 were examined.

Avanos is a city of masters of pottery, weaving and winemaking. On the main square of Avanos is no accident is a monument to potters and weavers.

Yurgium is an ancient city with a fifty-meter hill in the center, the slopes of which are considered sacred. Located here are the tombs of noble people and important personalities. Since 1971, the city has a historical museum. It is small, but archaeological finds in it surprise and amaze imagination. The city is famous for wine and carpets.

Goreme is a fantastic city. Extinguished several hundred thousand years ago, the volcano Erdzhias (the altitude of the mountain is 3916 m), throwing out lava, froze in unusual forms and combinations. Soft breed of tuff allowed to build churches, monasteries, houses here in the rocks, and in our time also hotels.

When visiting underground cities should take with you warm clothes - on the lower floors of the cities quite cool. Museums are open to tourists from 8 am to 5 pm. The entrance to the underground settlements costs about 15 lire.

Only 5 km separates Avanos from the Dams Valley, in which Sarah Khan's Caravanserai is built. It was erected by the Seljuks in 1249. This building was intended for the residence of traders and animals. In the area of ​​the caravanserai in more than 2 thousand square meters. meters are placed baths, a mosque. Currently, the museum and cultural center have settled here. Pass in the building of the show, in which artists dance sema.

About 350 churches are carved into the rocks of Cappadocia. Service in them takes place once a year, during the arrival of the Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew. The Valley of the Earthen Pyramids (17 km from Nevsehir) became the location of the Dark Church, churches with buckles, churches with sandals, churches with apples, Snake Church, Devichy Monastery and St. Barbara's Church.

Cappadocia is the center of pottery. Small factories make dishes, souvenirs made of ceramics. They can be purchased as a memorable gift about a trip to an amazing place.

No less striking are the gorges in the area. Ihlara Gorge Here in the 14th century churches are being built, out of 105 facilities access to tourists is open to 13. This volcanic canyon is 14 km away. Here there are temples connected by a network of transitions. Ancient frescoes in churches tell the story of the Bible.

Objects of tourist infrastructure are represented by hotels of different types: traditional, and private houses with estates, and even cave hotels.

We choose the way to Cappadocia

The main city of Cappadocia is the Kaiser, and the tourist center is Göreme. Getting to them is easy. And in Kayseri, and Nevsehir there are airports. In Göreme from Kayseri to cover 90 km, from Nevsehir - 50 km. It is convenient to buy air tickets with a transfer "Moscow-Istanbul-Nevsehir" or "Moscow-Istanbul-Kayseri". From Istanbul to go to Goreme by bus until 11 o'clock.

From Ankara, take the bus to Göreme (4-5 hours), by plane you can fly to Kayseri.

It is possible to travel from Istanbul, Ankara and other cities of Turkey to Kayseri by train. The big minus in such a trip is a long time on the way: up to 14 hours.

To follow is easier by bus or on a rented car already in Cappadocia itself. Regular buses between the cities of the district are frequent and regular, the roads are excellent.

Travel to Cappadocia is comparable to arriving on another planet: the landscape and structures are unusual, fantastic and mysterious.

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