Surreal shaped landscapes rich in troglodytic ruins, walking trails and delightful cave hotels in the ancient heart of Anatolia.
Travel bucket list idea:
Carpet weaving in Avanos
Avanos, Central Anatolia, Turkey|
Cappadocia’s renowned handicrafts town, Avanos is famous for both its ceramics, made by men, and its exceptional carpets – usually made by women. It’s a tradition handed down from mother to daughter, and still thrives today.
The carpets are hand-made on traditional wooden looms, using locally sourced wool and natural dyes. They’re especially prized for their exceptional quality, intricate patterns, and vibrant colours that reflect the region’s cultural heritage.
There are plentiful carpet shops to peruse, and several have women weaving in them or outside as you shop so you can watch the process – and of course, buy an exceptional carpet to take home.
Getting there & doing it
The best way to explore on two wheels is with an organised tour, led by experienced and multi-lingual guides like Biking in Cappadocia. There are trips of all length, from day tours focused on the popular Goreme region, to full biking holidays across Cappadocia. Groups tend to be small, commonly of four or five, and never more than twelve.
Expect to cover, depending on the topography, between 20km and 50kms per day. On day tours bikes, helmets and lunch are provided, with prices reducing the bigger the group; the biking holidays include transfers, accommodation and full board.
There will undoubtedly be charming en-route stops for refreshments. The Cappadocian valleys are notable as enterprising locals who set up stalls offering tea, beer, juices and sandwiches, at or near favoured panoramic stops. These do not operate set hours or seasons but your guides will know which of them are open.
When to do it
May to June and September to October are the optimum months for mountain biking in Cappadocia, though beware that the trails can get dusty by the end of the summer and the weather is often hot. April and November are also possible, though with a greater likelihood of rain.
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