CAPPADOCIA The region of the central Anatolia which is called Cappadocia was surrounded by Galatia (Ankara) and Lykaonia (Konya) to the west, Armenia to the east, Pontus to the north and Kilikia to the south. It shows a spectacular and surprisingly different landscape with its wind and water eroded volcanic tuff based soil. There are thousands of natural, pyramid shaped rock formations and cave-like settlement places carved by humans since the early ages throughout the region.

Cappadocia is located approximately 50km. to the south of Mount Erciyes (Argaeus), a former volcano. The violent eruptions of Erciyes covered whole area with a thick layer of volcanic ash. During the following ages this hardened tuff created a bizarre landscape by the strong influence of the wind and water erosion. Some of these chimney-like rock formations were dug-in as home or sometimes a church by the local people.

They used to speak a different language than their neighbors. Famous geographer and historian Strabon mentioned about these people in his book "Geographica" with their separate culture and language. This fertile country was occupied by its stronger neighbors throughout the ages. Persians, Macedonians and Romans were among the rulers of the land and its people in different times.

During the early periods of Christianity, the first followers of Jesus and his apostles settled in the area to hide from the soldiers of Roman Empire. It is known that St.Paul was looking for a secure place after expelled from Jerusalem. He came to Cappadocia and established the first Christian colony in this region with his followers.

According to Herodotus, the people of Cappadocia were called Syrians by their neighbors in Anatolia. The name Cappadocian was first used by Persians. They called the land Cappadocia and the people living on it Cappadocian.

Cappadocia was known to be a wealthy country with its fertile land and trade links with the neighbors. The first kingdom of Anatolia was founded in this region by the Hattis, 2000 years before Christ. There are various ruins in this area remained from the Hatti kingdom period.

Finally, this important region of Anatolia was conquered and ruled by the Seljuks and Ottomans.

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