Quads And Balloons
24th December 2016
Quad Biking….An exhilarating sport, perfect for exploring Cappadocia’s fascinating and wonderful scenery. Despite Cappadocia being visited yearly by tourists from around the globe, the enchanting landscape is difficult to explore. Even though the area is perfect for walkers, many of the rock formations and churches cut into the rocks are far apart from each other. So, we decided we would have ago at Quad biking.
This great way of exploring the Cappadocian landscape is a fun, safe and excellent way of seeing the finer details of the Cappadocia region.
The route would take us from Goreme to Sword valley, then to the Ladies Monastery, which is cut into a hard and dangerous cliff face rock. The trip would continue to Rose valley and Red valley, before seeing the abandoned ghost village of Causvin. the last place would be Love valley, where we’d watch the afternoon Balloons lift gently into the air. The whole tour would take 2 hours.
So, at one o’clock, we set off on our adventure. The first stop was Sword valley. The reason for its name is because the rock formations look like swords.
There is much to do, like explore the rock formations, take photos, and the area is brilliant for a picnic, but we only stopped at each sight for ten minutes to take photos. we then carried on to the Ladies monastery.
There are multiple locations in Cappadocia where you can find these cave churches. First the largest collection in a small area is the Goreme Open Air Museum, which has around sixty chapels/churches. Other Churches, like the El Nazar and Yusuf Koc Church, are hidden away from tourism. However, I believe the most isolated church/monastery in the area is the Ladies monastery, which is carved into the bottom of a large, towering rock face. Inside, there is a kitchen which also served as a stable, seperate rooms, and even a small balcony over looking the beautiful landscape.
After looking around the monastery, we jumped back onto the Quads, and continued to the Rose valley and Red valley. Red and Rose valleys are the most popular valleys in Goreme. They are easy to access, easy to walk and offer spectacular landscapes, with rock formations including many Fairy Chimneys. The valley is large and sweeping, and is notourious amongst walkers and hikers, who love to explore the scenery of the area. Even though the weather was quite foggy, we could still admire the stunning cliffs and hidden churches. Interestingly, we observed a change of rock colours from white to beige-ish – pink-ish indicating the transition from Red to Rose valley.
After a cup of tea, we continued to the village of Cavusin, wich was built into a large, towering rock formation.
One of the oldest settlements in the area, Cavusin is separated into 2 parts; the new town and the old Greek village. A small winding path led its way to the top of the hill, where the 5th century church of Saint John the Baptist, situated in the old village part is. Because of its age, it makes it the oldest church in Cappadocia. In the church, there are many routes passing through the ancient rock, and each lead to a higher level. One even go’s to a balcony, which looks over the valleys.
The next part of the tour was to go and see Love valley.
This next valley is the most famous valley of all Cappadocia : Love Valley! From the top of Love valley, there is a good viewing point of the Hot air balloons lifting into the air. After our tour, we went back to the atv place, before going back to the hotel for an early nights rest, ready for the Hot air ballon ride in the morning, so watch this space!
25th December 2016
Our alarm went of at six o’clock. With rapid speed, Summmer and I got dressed and went downt o the office, to wait for Mum and Geoff, aswell as the bus…..
With five minutes to spare, the balloon company arrived, we boarded the bus and drove it to the valleys to where the Hot Air Balloons are launched from. The company we were flying with was Turkiye Balloons, the newest and most successful company in the area. The balloons they use are Lindstrand Balloons, which are made in England. The balloon we were in carried 20 people, but many carry some 27 people. Despite it being winter, the basket was full, but thankfully, we were not cramped or squashed. After a while standing in the basket, we were up in the air…slowly rising high into the air.
Soon, we were over two hundred metres high, and there was a beautiful view over the area. Many Fairy Chimneys were visible, as well as Rose valley, Red valley and Love valley.
The different colours of the diversified landscape left us breathless, and the fact it was Christmas and snowing, made the whole thing much more exiting. Although we had only gone for half an hour, mum was already scared, and whilst huddling behind Summer and I, she was too traumitized to take any photos! Eventually, she started to look over the edge, because we had started to descend and fall down to the level of the Fairy Chimneys and Trees. We then started to rise back up, causing mum to hide once again.
After a one hour ride, it had finished, and since we were having a christmas party at the resturant Fat Boys, the rest of the day was spent there. Merry Christmas everyone! Keep watching this space.