List Words : Wanderlust Journeys | 31 December

Top 6 walks around Cappadocia

On assignment with Wanderlust Journeys, Kav Dadfar tracks down the best trails surrounding Cappadocia

1. Güllüdere (Rose) Valley

Head out in the afternoon to walk among Güllüdere Valley’s enchanting fairy chimneys, stunning rock churches and beautiful vineyards, and then wait for the stunning panoramic sunset view of the valley.

2. Devrent Valley

It's almost as if Devrent Valley was plucked from a planet far, far away and dropped into Cappadocia. Just a short drive from Göreme, the lunar landscape is unlike any other valley in Cappadocia, and the animal-shaped rock formations will keep you entertained as you walk.

3. Soganli Valley

To avoid the crowds, take a leisurely walk through the epic Soganli Valley (near the town of Mustafapasa) and explore ancient dwellings and rock-cut churches adorned with striking paintings depicting the life of Christ. Before you leave, stop by the main square and haggle with a local woman selling traditional Soganli dolls.

4. Guvercinlik (Pigeon) Valley

Pigeons have been an important part of Cappadocian life for centuries with farmers using their manure as a rich source of fertiliser. Situated between Göreme and Uchisar, the historic Pigeon Valley provides an easy walk among its man-made caves and old pigeon houses and churches.

5. Gorkundere (Love) Valley

Arrive early enough and you’ll have a breathtaking view of the famous hot air balloon morning liftoff. Afterwards, admire the spectacular and unique rock formations and let the stream guide you as you gently walk past fruit trees and vineyards to the town of Avanos.

6. Ihlara Valley

Take a trip to the Ihlara Valley and visit the site where Byzantine monks taught Christianity to locals in the cave churches. If the 14 kilometre walk to Selime is too long, choose the shorter journey to the Belisirma village. Taking around an hour and a half, it includes most of the churches but requires a descent of 320 steps.

Kav Dadfar travelled with Wanderlust Journeys last year to Cappadocia On Assignment for Wanderlust magazine. www.dadfarphotography.com