The Magic of Turkey: Cappadocia Luxury Travel Guide
Updated: Dec 21, 2021
In Part 2 of our Turkey travel story, we explore the fairytale land of Cappadocia and make a final stop in the town of Olympos, located in the beautiful blue waters of Turkey and also known as Turkish Riviera.
Words by Markin Abras (part 2 of 3)
Cappadocia is located in the village of Uchisar and is only an hour’s flight from Istanbul.
The magical ‘fairy chimney’ landscape of Cappadocia is truly awe-inspiring. Formed by ancient volcanic deposits that erupted millions of years ago, Cappadocia eroded over thousands of years into hundreds of spectacular columns. The volcanic soft rock allowed houses, churches and monasteries to be carved out. Over 30 rock-hewn churches and chapels can be found in the region, dating from the 9th-10th centuries.
Balloon experience provided by Cappadocia Voyager Balloons
Cappadocia is also home to 36 ancient underground cities, including the famous city of Derinkuyu, which could house up to 20,000 people in its 18 floors. Kaymakli underground city is also a must visit and consists of 8 floors underground that could house up to 3,000 people. It was mainly used during the Byzantine period for protection from invading armies.
Other notable sights include the Goreme Open Air Museum, Zelve Open Air Museum, Uchisar Castle, Pasabag, Devrent and the Forgotten Cave Churches.
Click below to launch slideshow >
Cappadocia Voyager Balloons
Gaferli Mah, Müze Cd., 50180
Göreme, Nevşehir Merkez
+90 532 717 50 50
Experiencing Cappadocia from a hot air balloon not only gives you the best views, but also a unique perspective of the magnificent landscape. You can smell the air, view different vantage points and appreciate the geological terrain from a bird’s eye view. At Voyager Balloons, you will experience just that and much more.
Voyagers Balloons has been in operation since 2008 and is often rated number one on many travel sites and guidebooks. Known for its high safety standards, balloon fleet and experienced pilots, Voyagers Balloons was founded by Cappadocians Teyfik Olmez and Mehmet Halis Aydogan. The company has an impressive fleet of 12 balloons, all equipped with the quietest burners available. A professional and friendly staff, fluent in English, Portuguese and Japanese, makes the whole flying experience informative and enjoyable for all.
Choose from 3 categories of hot air balloon flights - Standard, Ultra-Comfort and Exclusive. The Standard flight has a 4 compartment basket that can seat up to 16 people, with a flight time of approximately 60 minutes. The Ultra-Comfort option has the same basket size as the Standard option, but carries up to 8 people. This gives you more space and the flight time is 75 to 90 minutes. The Exclusive flight option offers guests a seat on the plane and a view of Cappadocia’s surroundings. The specially designed basket accommodates a maximum of 4 people, allowing you to experience Cappadocia intimately. Also enjoy a 90 minute flight, delicacies on board and a champagne reception upon landing at Exclusive Flight.
All flight categories are commercially insured for flight, ground transportation and crew. Airfares start at around $100.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Voyagers Balloons will pick you up from your hotel an hour before sunrise in one of their luxury minibuses. The process of ballooning starts very early in the morning, as cool air is a prerequisite for the successful lifting of the balloons. Wear warm clothing as it can get cold in the early morning hours. A buffet breakfast will be provided but due to Covid-19 restrictions only tea, coffee and croissants will be served. After breakfast you will be taken to the launch site to watch the fascinating inflation of the balloons. Once the balloon is fully inflated, you will climb into the basket and get ready to take off. During the flight you will enjoy unforgettable views including explanations about the terrain beneath your feet. After landing, you will receive a flight certificate as a souvenir.
Hot air balloons are stable, very comfortable and considered extremely safe to fly. Takeoff and landing locations change depending on wind and other weather conditions. If the ride is cancelled for any reason, a full refund will be given. Wear sturdy shoes and warm clothing as it can be chilly in the early morning hours. Voyagers Balloons ‘ fleet is modern, flown by experienced and certified pilots, and goes through an FAA-like inspection process. Children under the age of 6 are not allowed to fly. However, babysitting services are available upon request.
Stay in Luxury
The Museum Hotel
Tekeli mah. Eski,
Göreme Cd. No.1, 50240 Nevşehir, Turkey
+90 384 219 22 20
Located on Uçhisar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, The Museum Hotel is a world-renowned luxury hotel known for its luxury and unique features. Located on the highest point of Cappadocia, it offers breathtaking views in all directions and unforgettable sunsets. Built in restored caves thousands of years old, guests experience a fusion of history and luxury.
Click below to launch slideshow >
As the only Relais & Chateaux property in Cappadocia, it features 30 distinguished stone cave rooms that have been painstakingly restored. Choose from 6 types of stays: Deluxe Rooms, Deluxe Suites, Superior Suites, Prime Suites and Imperial Suites and Pool Suites. Each room, with bare store walls, is uniquely decorated with handpicked antique furniture, texture and artwork.
Many rooms offer unobstructed views of the enchanting Cappadocia landscape, oversized bathrooms and Jacuzzi tubs. Enjoy complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi, HD TV, safe, whirlpools, air conditioning and tea and coffee making facilities.
One of the most notable features of The Museum Hotel is the Roman infinity pool, which offers magnificent views of Cappadocia. It is the ideal place to relax and enjoy unforgettable sunsets. It is also a popular spot for early morning balloon watching, when hundreds of balloons rise at sunrise. The Museum Hotel also has its own garden where organic produce and spices are grown, as well as private gardens and beautiful flowers. Look out for slow-moving turtles, peacocks and other birds that make the Museum Hotel their home.
The Museum Hotel also has a meeting room that can accommodate 36 people - ideal for weddings and special events. A specialized event planner is available on site to help you create a memorable experience.
Click below to launch slideshow >
FOOD & DRINK
The award-winning Lil’a Restaurant, under the direction of Chef Saygin Sesli, serves traditional Turkish cuisine with flavors from Anatolia and Cappadocia. Known for its quality service, enjoy a gastronomic experience with unforgettable views. Lil’a serves local, seasonal produce and focuses on sustainable farming methods from its 200 acres of farmland and 250 acres of vineyards.
Start with stuffed onions with basil and sumac sauce. Notable main courses include the slow-cooked veal cheeks in red wine sauce, served with portobello mushrooms, couscous and roasted shallots. The rack of lamb, served with roasted Cappadocia potatoes, is another delicious choice. The dark chocolate soufflé with figs and almonds, served with vanilla cream sauce, is by far our top choice for dessert.
Lil’a offers an exceptional traditional Turkish breakfast for hotel guests. Lil’a is also open to non-hotel guests from 11:00am to 10:00pm. For reservation inquiries, visit www.lil-a.com.tr/en or email email@example.com.
the town of Olympos, located in the beautiful blue waters of Turkey and also known as Turkish Riviera.