Family: Cappadocia day 4 - Urgup

Trip Start Mar 12, 2008
Trip End Mar 31, 2008

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Today we visited an underground city. The drive to Kaymakali, the city we visited, took about 40 minutes from the hotel in Urgup. The same winding, fairly poorly surfaced roads that we have become used to, but the destination was not a disappointment. We secured the services of Mustafa, a local guide for a 55minute tour for 30YTL, and that was worth every penny. To say that we would have gotten lost is an understatement, and the insights he provided were incredible. The structure itself is extremely complex, and extends at least 100m underground. The entire complex is not open to the public, but what is visible is extensive. The first known inhabitants were the Hittites in about 2000BC, but it was used by Christians as late as the 5th century AD. Up to 5000 people could live securely underground for extended periods while taking evasive action from approaching enemies. They had systems for cooking, cleaning, bathing and making whine as well as a sophisticated hierarchy depending on your wealth and ability to pay taxes. Obviously, not much has changed over the ages.......
We were all enthralled - the kids particularly by the prison for errant inhabitants (and bad children) that appeared to be fairly harsh.
After the underground city, we drome through Uchisar to Goreme, and ended up in the same restaurant for lunch that we had used 2 days prior, and ate pretty much the same food again - a pottery prepared lamb shish, with the same delicious outcome.
After that, a short drive to Cavusin, just outside of Goreme, and a walk into the mountains. This was Patty and my favourite hike - there is no doubt that multiple scenes from Star Wars were filmed in this very spot. Fairy chimneys, eroded canyons, hollowed out mountains - it was all here to see. Great walk, and back to the car just before the rain set in. And back to our cozy digs.....for a movie (North by Northwest) and Turkish Pizza.
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