Cappadocia Offers Otherworldly Holiday

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

  The famous fairy chimneys in the central Anatolian tourist attraction of Goreme in Cappadocia have for centuries been hollowed out and used as homes by locals. This tradition continues today, with many of the would-be residences serving as hotels.

  The natural rock formations, shaped from centuries of volcanic deposits and the effects of water and wind, offer lodging for prices that range from $50 to $250 a night. The rooms have natural temperature control; they stay cool in summertime and warm in winter.

  Mustafa Durmaz, the head of the Goreme Tourism Development Cooperative, told the Anatolia news agency that both native and foreign tourists visiting the region frequently chose to stay at the “chimney hotels” over regular modern hotels.

  British tourists were the most frequent summer visitors to the chimney hotels, while visitors from the Far East formed the majority of the region’s winter tourists, Durmaz noted. Turkish holidaymakers’ interest in the chimney hotels has increased in the last few years, said Durmaz, adding that the region was home to around 30 such accommodations.