4.5 star rating: Recommended 50 Reviews

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  • Location: Istanbul, Turkey
  • Duration:  15 hours (approx.)
See some of the best of southern Cappadocia on this full-day tour from Istanbul, including round-trip transfers, flights and lunch. Explore this strange-but-beautiful UNESCO-listed region with its ‘fairy chimney’ rock pillars, cave villages and subterranean cities. Walk through stunning Rose Valley; Zelve into Kaymakli Underground City; see the abandoned village of Çavuşin, and ogle Ortahisar Castle and Pigeon Valley, with its rock dovecotes. Finish at a winery to sample some Cappadocia wines before returning to Istanbul.

Enjoy in-depth attention from your guide on this small-group tour limited to 20 people.

Highlights

  • Full-day tour of southern Cappadocia from Istanbul with round-trip flights
  • Discover this spectacular UNESCO-listed region of rock formations and cave villages
  • Explore Kaymakli Underground City, with its subterranean passages and chambers
  • Visit Ortahisar Castle, a carved rock fortress towering above Ortahisar village
  • Walk in Rose Valley, a pink-colored valley of fairy chimneys and cave churches
  • Visit Çavuşin rock village and Pigeon Valley, plus sample Cappadocian wines at a local winery
  • Enjoy a personalized experience on a small-group tour limited to 20 people

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Cappadocia In One Day Small-Group Tour from Istanbul: Rose Valley, Ortahisar, Kaymakli Underground City and Pigeon Valley

Explore the strange and surreal sights of Cappadocia on your small-group tour

Leave your central Istanbul hotel in the early morning for your transfer to Istanbul airport. Board your flight to Kayseri International Airport and, on arrival, travel to Cappadocia by air-conditioned minivan.

After roughly 1.5 hours, arrive at Rose Valley, so named for its rose-colored rocks that change hue through the day. Enjoy a leisurely walk in this beautiful valley, passing its mushroom-shaped fairy chimneys, jagged peaks, and leafy vineyards and orchards. On route, visit the valley’s cave churches, some dating back to the 8th or 9th centuries, and listen to tales of how they were used by early monks.

Next, visit ‘old’ Çavuşin, an abandoned rock village known for its old Christian churches and houses. Take photos of the eerie houses, and gaze at the Basilica of St John the Baptist that sits on a cliff high above the village.

Stop for lunch at a local restaurant (see the Itinerary for a sample menu) and then Zelve into the town of Ortahisar, to view its crowning glory, Ortahisar Castle. Marvel at this unique 295-foot (90-meter) high fortress, with its honeycomb of rock caves carved during Byzantine times. Explore some of the burrowed-out chambers and storage rooms and soak up the panoramic views of the town below.

Drive to Kaymakli Underground City, one of the best-preserved in Cappadocia. Roam this subterranean network of homes, stables, cellars and kitchens and learn how it was used by early Christians to escape persecution.

Next, visit Pigeon Valley, known for its pigeon houses carved from the cliffs and rocks. Ogle the spectacular dovecotes and learn how the locals used to house their pigeons here to farm their droppings for fertilizer.

Lastly, visit a winery to sample some of the wines cultivated in Cappadocia for over 4,000 years, and later, return to Kayseri Airport for your flight to Istanbul. Your tour ends with a hotel drop-off this evening.

Itinerary

Sample Menu:

First course:
  • Turkish meze (small appetizers) of breads, aubergine, artichokes, stuffed vine leaves, meatballs and yoghurt with cucumber and garlic
Main course:
  • Chicken, lamb or beef kebabs
Dessert:
  • Baklava (filo pastry layers filled with nuts and sweetened with honey or syrup) and coffee

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2015

This tour was amazing!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2014

We had just one day to see this absolutely fantastic part of Turkey and this tour did it all for us. We left our Istanbul hotel at 4:40 AM and returned at 10:30 PM so you must be prepared for that long day. We were lucky and had a sunny day and even in November is was warm enough to be able to enjoy everything.

The sights are even more stunning than one sees in the pictures and photographs of other people. Our guide took us to everything promised and we had a wonderful lunch at a very nice restaurant. The shuttle ride from the airport in Keysari to the landscape we wanted to see was 30 to 45 minutes and we made a couple stops along the route to drop off other travelers on the shuttle. Our shuttle driver spoke very little English so we were not exactly sure of "the plan" for our tour, but once he dropped us off at the meeting point with our guide for the day everything ran smoothly. There were only 4 of us plus guide and driver in a very comfortable mini van.

We loved the tour and very highly recommend it. Even if you have only one day and no chance to take the highly touted balloon ride over the area, what you will see will amaze you.

From USD $ 340.00

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Tour code: 3795ISTCAPPA

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