The Highs and Lows of Cappadocia, Turkey

The Highs and Lows of Cappadocia, Turkey

The most gorgeous way to travel and see Cappadocia has to be via #hotairballoon. Floating high above #Turkey and watching the sun rise is truly #aspirational and very magical. Once you have finished viewing it above, you must go into the Kaymakli Underground City; a fascinating trip!


Although the 4:00 am wake up call for our hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia, Turkey, was shockingly early, we were really looking forward to the adventure. We were groggy and tired, but filled with anticipation for our balloon adventure. I don’t do well with heights, but we went hot air ballooning in Egypt the year before and discovered we liked it. Hot air ballooning in Cappadocia, was one of the things we were most looking forward to when we came to Turkey.

After a 4:30 am pick up by the balloon company, Goreme Balloons, we drove around and picked up other passengers, finally getting to the launch site about an hour later for a light breakfast of rolls and tea, a safety briefing. Then we loaded into the mini-bus for a quick trip out to the launch pad.

Wonderful view
Wonderful view

The area outside of Goreme has miles of large, dirt fields. This is the balloon staging area. Everywhere, as far as they eye can see are balloons in various stages of inflation.

After takeoff, it was immediately evident just how packed the skies can be. We counted nearly 100 different balloons from dozens of companies. 

We counted nearly 100 different balloons

The numerous balloons rose into the sky in eerie silence, occasionally punctuated by the rushing flames above your head as your pilot warms the gas in your balloon. 

from  $275

Hot air Balloon Flight in Cappadocia

Aspirational
 Cappadocia, Nevşehir Merkez, Turkey
You may also like

Discover Cappadocia Tour

Hot air Balloon Flight in Cappadocia

The highlight was watching the pilots of other balloons hitting the gas burners – it caused the balloons to illuminate in vibrant colors! It was gorgeous to see.

The landing process
The landing process
Great experience
Great experience
Prepare for takeoff
Prepare for takeoff
Amazing sunset viewAmazing moon view
Amazing sunset view

Our pilot expertly navigated the deep canyons and got us ridiculously close to some of the rock formations. From the balloon vantage point, we could see all of the Rose Valley, the Red Valley and Goreme Valley. It was spectacular and well worth doing! 

Amazing sunset viewAmazing moon view
Amazing moon view
Baloon festival
Baloon festival

Back at our hotel, the hotel manager told us about his hometown of nearby Mustafapasa, the Greek town, and raved about it. We drove through it. It looked like a pleasant village, but didn’t really speak to us so we didn’t spend much time there. Instead, we drove the back roads in the direction of Kaymakli. The drive through Ayvali, Guneyce, and Mazi were amazing. There weren’t any other cars on the roads and we really feel like we’d wandered back in time in Turkey. The countryside was a dull brown from the heat, broken up by spots of irrigated green vegetation.

We made a scenic and desolate drive through the Anatola Countryside on the way to Kaymakli. After our drive, we tried to get lunch in Kaymakli, but couldn’t find a place that was open and serving food, so we grabbed some chips. After our snack, we went down into the Kaymakli Underground City. The city is built under the Citadel rock and inhabitants of the region would take refuge in the Underground City during times of siege. They had built several levels in this underground city for the storage of food, housing of animals and people.

from  $75

Kaymakli Underground City Tour in Cappadocia

Aspirational
 Cappadocia, Nevşehir Merkez, Turkey
You may also like

Discover Cappadocia Tour

Cappadocia Atv Tours

They had built several levels in this underground city for the storage of food, housing of animals and people
Underground city of Kaymakli
Underground city of Kaymakli

In the afternoon, we drove on to Uchisar Castle, the site of a massive rock outcropping that was once used as part of the fortifications to protect the region (and is the highest point in the region). We stopped here to take some photos and also have a quick snack at one of the no-name snack stands by the parking lot.

Fairy chimneys spread through the unique Cappadocia landscape
Fairy chimneys spread through the unique Cappadocia landscape
Beautiful views of Cappadocia’s fairy chimneys
Beautiful views of Cappadocia’s fairy chimneys

The views from this rocky outcropping are majestic and it is easy to see why this “castle” was of such strategic importance to the inhabitants of the area.

Loved this story?

Subscribe to our newsletter

to receive new story and activity ideas in your inbox.

Keep inspired By other stories