Dan and I first visited Türkiye back in 2010 on a Mediterranean cruise after taking the bar examination in the US. We were super excited for this stop a decade ago, and spent nearly 24 hours in the Istanbul port. We have been meaning to return since, but it didn’t happen until we visited Izmir, Cappadocia and Istanbul over 11 days in July 2023! This articles details what we did in Cappadocia, as well as whether 3 days was enough time in Cappadocia!
Cappadocia, Türkiye is an ancient region (yes, region, not a town/city) in Central Anatolia, Turkey, i.e. right in the middle of the country. The Cappadocia region dates back prior to 499 BC (!) and presently is separated into 5 provinces. Cappadocia is currently super popular as being the magical “balloon town” in Turkey, where hot air balloons literally fly through the towns (well, Göreme specifically) every morning. Cappadocia is also well known for its otherworld looks, including wild rock formations and fairy chimneys.
For planning purposes, prime tourist Cappadocia mainly consists of 3 small towns – Gorëme, Uçhisar and Avanos. These towns are the closest to the main Cappadocia sites, and well suited for tourists. We stayed in Gorëme, which is the largest of these three towns and is home to many hotels, including cave hotels, restaurants, shops and nightlife. Gorëme is also the main town to view the magical hot air balloons most mornings. Uçhisar, apparently popular with the French, is located on a hill top just down the road. Uçhisar is famously home to Uçhisar castle, as well as restaurants, shops and some nightlife. Finally, Avanos felt more like a town, with the Kızılırmak River running through it and numerous local pottery shops. There is a DoubleTree by Hilton in Avanos for those seeking Western accommodation.