This place is awesome! Located in the central party of Turkey (nearest big town is Kayseri), this region is dominated by a large volcano. The rock formations from its ash deposits are soft, and nature erodes them into fantastic shapes, many of them like big mushrooms.
People work the rock too. The region is full of dwellings, villages, even entire cities carved out of the stone:
Natures handywork is even more beautiful:
Our hotel, the Esbelli Eva in Urgup, is a beautiful dwelling with rooms partly carved out of the stone, and then partly built-up of stone blocks. This keeps the rooms nicely cool during the hot summer. Here is the bedroom where we stayed:
The people of Turkey are warm and friendly. Here is a shot of some local men at an outdoor cafe:
The cuisine is excellent, with the freshest of ingredients all prepared simply. We ate beef, lamb and chicken with good fresh vegetables and potatoes. We went out one night to an upscale restaurant in Uchisar with a French-trained chef. His meals are wonderful:
When we tell people about Turkey we find some are put off by – “isn’t it dangerous? Aren’t there terrorists there?” We don’t think so!
Turkey is officially a secular country, with no state-imposed religion. Turks are free to practice any religion they choose. A majority of them practice Islam, but there are Jew and Christians (and everything else, I am sure!) in Turkey as well.
The Turks we met were really nice people, interested in who we were and where we were from. They seem eager to join the world and welcome all visitors. They are really eager to join the EU, so much so that their license plates are already equipped the the EU’s circle-of-stars emblem.
Mel and I cannot rave enough about Turkey. Go!