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The caves and various landformations in Cappadocia, Turkey, are not only strange and interesting but are also functional

Amy Waldschmidt

on 9 September 2013

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Transcript of Cappadocia

By: Amy Waldschmidt
The erosion helped shape the bizarre landscape
Cool Curves
On the sides of some valleys,there are strange "sweeping" curves. This is caused by rainwater building up on the inside and wearing away the rock
In Cappadocia, they have a few very large main volcanos that ate away the soft rock along the flow of lava every time one erupted. They are what caused the random little “mountains” in the middle of nowhere.
Fairy Chimneys
One of the neatest and most unique things about Cappadocia is strange rock configurations called “fairy chimneys.” Basically, they are long columns of lighter colored rock, with a larger pyramid-shaped dome of dark colored rock on top. Long ago, there was just a slab of soft rock. Then, after the volcano erupted, a layer of rock was formed on top of the original kind. After thousands of years, the two rocks eroded differently, leaving the one on top “randomly” connected.
Some even look like animals!
A camel
Cave Houses
At the time, there weren’t many good, safe places to live. However, the people soon realized the massive slabs of rock were very soft, and could be easily cut. Therefore, they decided to carve away the rock and live inside.
Some reasons why it was a smart idea to choose to live in those caves are:
1. Good insulation (warm in winter, cool in summer)
2. Fertile soil right outside the caves for gardens
3. When they cooked food with fires inside they were still safe (the rock does not catch on fire)
4. Very large areas; enough rock slabs for entire towns
Some dangers of living there:
1. Low ceilings
2. VERY steep in some places
3. With multiple levels, there are holes in the floor
4. Very dark
Underground Cities
When Romans came to persecute the early Christians because of their religion, the Christians had nowhere to flee. So they decided to stay in Cappadocia, and take refuge underground. They built entire underground cities sometimes over twenty stories deep. Some underground cities allowed up to fifty thousand people to live in them all at the same time! The cities held store rooms, ventilations shafts, wells, stables, churches, and living areas. Cappadocians originally built them for times of Roman attack, as well as animal attacks, but eventually they moved in to stay.
It was a challenge to be able to know how to get enough air, food and water to supply everyday living, but they figured it out. The ventilation shafts supplied air throughout the whole village, and wells supplied water. As for food, they ate mostly dry foods that they had stored from farms. They also sometimes ate the animals they brought underground with them.
Cappadocia, Turkey, is an amazing region with many spectacular qualities. Beautiful caves and fairy chimneys dot the valleys. But the caves and various landformations in Cappadocia are not only strange and interesting, but are also functional. Ancient people who lived there carved into the Tufa rock and made their homes inside! However, this was not the only place Cappadocians chose to live. One more place is hidden to your view. This is because they lived underground. Entire cities nested below the surface. This, combined with the bizarre, but breathtaking landscape makes Cappadocia a one of a kind place that is truly stunning.
The remarkable Cappadocia region is unique and special in its own way. It has amazing fairy chimneys, caves, and even underground cities that are useful as well as attractive. The caves, partially carved out by the inhabitants, made a great place to live for various reasons. The underground cities also served their purpose as a place to flee from animals and Romans. They also were a surprisingly good place for everyday life as well. All of this combined into one region certainly makes Cappadocia, Turkey, a place to remember.
can view them today

If you wish to see the cave houses in Cappadocia, you are permitted to explore the valleys on your own, or with a tour. My family and I did both when we visited Turkey. You are allowed to climb up and investigate the homes and actually walk around to see where people used to live.
To see the underground cities, you must be on a tour. Most tours lead you around dimly lit passageways through very narrow, low ceilinged areas. While they are sometimes over twenty stories deep, you can only see the first eight that have been excavated.
Finally, to see the truly incredible land formations like fairy chimneys, you also have the opportunity of hiking on your own through the canyons. However...
You also have the choice of taking a hot air balloon ride!
You have to leave your home at least by 4:25 in the morning to take a small shuttle to a meeting point. From there you combine with many other families to take a large bus to the hot air balloons. You watch as it is filled with air, and lifted off the ground. Then, you get in and it takes you low and high through various valleys (like Love Valley, and Pigeon Valley). The ride lasts an hour before you land right into a trailer and you get out!
Hope you enjoyed Cappadocia!
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