Queue Indiana Jones soundtrack
We went deep… 53 meters into the center of the earth. Armed with our trusty guide we descended down narrow corridors, bypassing infinite abysses and death drops, with only the derriere of our fellow tourist in sight.
Okay. This is an exaggeration. While we did venture into the depths of Derinkuyu, our safety was never at risk. The drops were covered with grates and the only injury one could incur was a bump on the head if not cautious enough.
Derinkuyu was one of the underground cities that were built as a refuge for Christians from the Romans. This labyrinth of caves and tunnels included a kitchen, living rooms (the sole dwelling place for each family), a church, grave, well, stable and ventilation tower. Christians would occupy these anywhere from a couple of days to four months.
The rest of our tour included a visit to Mustafapasa (modern-day Sinssos) where the Greeks and Turks lived together until the population exchange of 1924, the Keslik Monastery, a recently found excavation site at Sobessos, and the Soganli Valley where we did a short trek and learned about the pigeon caves (cave owners harvest pigeon excrement since it is great fertilizer.. Ew?).
More cave diving and pigeon poop… It’s always an eventful day in Cappadocia.