Cappadocia is a region in Turkey renowned for its stunning underground cities and captivating culture. The best underground city in Cappadocia is Derinkuyu, a multi-level underground city that has been carved out of the soft volcanic rock of the region.
History of Derinkuyu
Derinkuyu is thought to have been built by the Phrygians, an Indo-European people who lived in Anatolia in the 8th century BC. It was expanded by the Hittites, an ancient Anatolian people, in the 7th century BC. Derinkuyu was abandoned in the 13th century, after the Mongol invasions of Anatolia.
Features of Derinkuyu
Derinkuyu is an impressive underground city, with 18 levels that descend to a depth of 60m. The city is divided into four distinct areas, each with its own unique features.
- The Upper Level is the main entrance to the city and contains the largest number of rooms.
- The Middle Level is the most heavily fortified area, with thick stone walls and huge doors.
- The Lower Level contains living quarters, storage areas, and religious sites.
- The Deepest Level is the most mysterious and inaccessible area of the city, and is thought to have been used as a refuge during times of danger.
Derinkuyu is also home to a number of underground tunnels, connecting the city to other settlements in the region. These tunnels were used to transport food, water, and other supplies to the city.
Exploring Derinkuyu is a fascinating experience, as the city is filled with intricate carvings, secret passageways, and hidden chambers. Visitors can explore the city on foot, or take a guided tour to learn more about the city’s history and culture.
Things to See
- The Church of St. Barbara is one of the most impressive sights in Derinkuyu. It is an ancient Byzantine church carved into the rock, with beautiful frescoes and carvings.
- The Great Hall is a large chamber with an impressive arched ceiling. It was used as a meeting place for the city’s inhabitants.
- The Tunnels are a network of underground passages that connect Derinkuyu to other settlements in the region.
Derinkuyu is an incredible underground city, and a must-see for any visitor to Cappadocia. With its impressive architecture, fascinating history, and captivating culture, it is no wonder why Derinkuyu is considered to be the best underground city in Cappadocia.