Towers and Trails of Cappadocia
Turkey, Discovery, 8 days - from £695 (land only) - from €975 (land only) - from $1,140 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at Kayseri Airport. KE group service begins with a 2 hour transfer to the Ihlara area. We overnight in the group hotel in Guzelyurt `Beautiful Home` a fascinating town where traditional life lives on in its most unchanged form. With its rich Ottoman-Greek history and dramatic setting below the snow-capped summit of Hasan Dagi, Guzelyurt is a great place to explore.
Day 2: Today we walk in the atmospheric and fascinating Ihlara Valley, a 14km peaceful canyon dotted with hundreds of rock cut rooms, ancient churches and traditional fields and farms. After lunch in Belisirma village we drive to Selime where we visit the monastery complex, the largest religious building in Cappadocia, before returning to our hotel.
Day 3: We visit one of the most important sites in the area, Guzelyurt's Church Mosque before exploring nearby 'Monastery Valley'. We then drive to Derinkuyu for a visit to the incredible underground city, a trip highlight and an unbelievable historical maze which was home to over 50,000 people! After the visit we continue to `fairy-tale` Goreme at the heart of Cappadocia and check into our hotel.
Day 4: Our walking starts from Cavusin, one of the oldest settlements in Cappadocia. Following a footpath which passes fascinating rock formations and fairy chimneys, we enter the Zelve Monastery Valley. After a visit to the monastery we take a walk through the Pasabaglari `Monks` Valley noted for its unique toadstool-capped fairy chimneys. We return back to our hotel in Goreme.
Day 5: Today we start with a visit to the open-air museum in Goreme to see a superb collection of ancient frescoes from the surrounding rock churches. We then hike through the Meskendir Valley to the Red and Rose Valleys, reputedly the most beautiful valleys in Cappadocia. After exploring the red and rose coloured sandstone churches we end the day with a visit to Avanos, known for its pottery.
Day 6: After a short drive we begin hiking through the Akvadi `White` Valley, following an old river course through flourishing vineyards. The fairy chimneys in this valley are slender and unique. Arriving in Uchisar at lunchtime, we will hike up to the high viewpoint known as the fortress, with superb views. In the afternoon we explore the Zemi Valley with poplar trees and volcanic rocks.
Day 7: Today we hike up onto a plateau which offers magnificent views over the Uzengi Valley. We then enter the Pancarlik Valley to visit the churches of Kepez and Sarica before finishing our walk in one of the most important centres in the area, Urgup. Once a bishopric, the town is now known for its cafes and wonderful wines. We spend our final night in Cappadocia and enjoy a celebratory group meal.
Day 8: We have an early morning transfer to Kayseri Airport, where KE group package services end.