Turkey is a massive transcontinental country with vast landscapes and secret destinations. Here’s a glimpse of our favorite stops in Türkiye. An Instragram famed destination, Cappadocia spreads over several towns, mostly popular for its hot air balloon tours across the mountainous valleys. The three main cities of Capppadocia are Göreme, Uçhisar and Ürgüp.
Things to Do
Wind Mills: Probably the only “attraction” in town, these ancient windmills date back to 19th century and overlook the entire village.
Marina Port: Alacati is most known for windsurfing, so the port is filled with surfing schools. There’s also many restaurants and cafes, but mostly yachts and anchored boats.
Delikli Koy Beach: A beautiful beach with white rock formations giving you all the flashbacks of the Pamukkale travestines.
Places to Eat
Bumba: The most glorious breakfast experience in Alacati. The bohemian vibes, trendy décor, excellent service and phenomenal food. Get the traditional all you can eat Turkish spread, and hang out with the restaurants pet turtle & cats.
Kose Kahve: Located in the center of the town, Kose Kahve is the most popular coffee shop. Both comfortable and beautifully decorated, it makes for the perfect caffeine pitstop.
Mudavim Pide Salonu: You can’t visit Turkey without having Pide. Stop by for the freshest, made to order savory & sweet pide selections. It’s a little shop at entrance of the town, but it’s a must stop!
Hoshaff: Trendy café and bar with an assortment of delicious food. You can sit in the terrace right behind the bar inside, or opt to get a table outside in the middle of the square.
Places to Drink
Morah: This is the perfect midday stop, and even better at night with live music, bands, great cocktails and a delicious pot of freshly made warm sangria.
Goz Lounge: Nightclub/place to hang out in the evenings. Cozy little setting and a winner with the locals.
Places to Stay
Maizon D’Azur (same owners as Meydan): If you’re looking for a budget friendly location to spend your time in Alacati Meydan and Maizon are perfect options. Meydan is much more central, but there’s a bar downstairs that can get rowdy at night. Maizon is perfectly quaint and quiet but in a hidden street and can get a bit dark at night. I loved my stay regardless!
Splurging a little
Gaia Otel : A luxurious lodging location, but well worth it. The staff is incredibly friendly and allowed me to take a tour of the hotel. The décor and the rustic boutique vibe of this place is all you’re really need while visiting.
Alacati is a small town that is completely pedestrian friendly. If you want to venture out to see some of the attractions by the marina, you’ll be able to easily grab a taxi from the city center.
Most visitors get to Alaçatı through Izmir city. From the port city, you’ll need to hop on the train towards Kaymakamlik (which is also the last stop, and where you need to get off). The bus ride is around 50 minutes. Once you get off, you’ll need to take a bus to Çeşme for another hour out. The bus is only 8 TL and the scenery along the way is beautiful.
Will you around on a Saturday? Don’t miss out on the grand Saturday market . The whole town is out and about among street vendors selling everything you can think of. You’ll be surrounded by locals and Dozens of stalls selling souvenirs, jewelry, home trinkets, clothes and accessories.
Things to Do
Derinkuyu Underground City: Although a bit out of the way, the underground city is a must visit! Spend hours discovering the underground settlements & quarters.
Devrent Valley (also known as the imagination valley): Mostly known for its camel rock sculpture and other rock formations!
Galerie Ikman: Instagram famed carpet store, stop by the galerie for a beautiful assortment of carpets, handbags & other goods. & of course make sure to get your picture taken!
Uschisar Castle: Right from Pigeon Valley you can take a quick detour and head upwards towards the castle. One of the best viewpoints of Cappadocia as it is the highest point in the valley.
Pigeon Valley: The start of your first hike! Enjoy a walk and viewpoint from Pigeon’s Valley. There’s one of many evil eye trees that make for great photos and of course plenty of pigeons.
Pasabag Valley: The valley is huge, you can easily spend 2-3 hours here. Snap photos of the odd cone shaped rocks, enjoy a horse ride, hike a few hills and climb through the formations.
Zelve Open Air Museum: Home to an ancient Byzantine monastic settlement which dates back to the 17th century, this open air museum is only a 1km away from city center.
Places to Eat
Millocal Restaurant: Run by the Millstone Cave Suites, hands down one of the best restaurants in Cappadocia. Bonus: you’ll get excellent views of the valley during sunset as well!
Mozaik Restaurant: Great local authentic food, not a tourist trap either! Genuine servers and staff that will welcome you like family.
Ziggy’s Café & Shoppe: Antique local restaurant, run by the same owner as Ziggy’s shop. You get a great combination of good food, hospitable staff and a shop to purchase one of a kind trinkets.
Places to Stay
Göreme is the center of Cappadocia, and the best place to stay to get the full experience. Our favorite hotels are: Artemis Cave Suites, Sultan Cave Suites, Mithra Cave Hotel or Rox Hotel. These hotels are all cave suites that hold the authentic Cappadocian settlement vibes but also offer some of the best sunrise views in town.
There are two main airports that are close to Cappadocia – Kayseri Erkilet Airport which is a little over an hour from Göreme & Nevşehir Kapadokya Airport which is 40 minutes. In all cases, there is an excellent hotel pick up system that you can sign up for through your lodging. It costs about 40 Liras (TL) each way and eases the hassle of figuring out a way into town.
The “triangle” cities have a vast busing system that takes visitors to any of Cappadocia’s known attractions. The bus costs as little as 3 TL but could be more depending on where you’re going. They run every 30-minutes to an hour, so be sure to know the schedule ahead of time. Most buses will be going in two directions Avanos or Nevsehir – which are the neighboring cities, where most of the locals actually live. These directions will have clearly identified stops along the way for you – so don’t worry!
The only risk in visiting Cappadocia in the winter is the fact that the hot air balloon rides might be cancelled or delayed due to weather conditions! Otherwise, you’ll be in the valley surrounded by heaps of beautiful snow which will make for a perfect holiday getaway.
Plan to stay at least 3 days in Cappadocia to cover most attractions & get several chances to see the hot air balloons for sunrise!