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Vallée d'ihlara

Vallée d'ihlara (Turkey)

Practical information about Vallée d'ihlara

  • Family
  • Viewpoint
  • Hiking / Trekking
  • Caves
  • Place or Religious Monument
  • Archaeological Site
  • Castle and fortress
5 / 5 - One review
How to get there
40 kilometres from Aksaray by car
When to go
From April to September
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Vallée d'ihlara

Gaëtan MOLENE Travel writer
16 travel articles

In this steep valley in Turkey, men and women hollowed out the walls to build the churches. A true explorer's path, very fun for children (big and little).

My suggestion:
Take the time to visit the higher up churches, there's fewer people and superb views over the canyon.

After the hundreds of steps going down into the canyon, there is a big surprise with all of these churches carved into the walls themselves and in which paintings are still well preserved.Access to the Ihlara Valley is easy, and the whole family will enjoy the walk.

Enjoy yourself playing at being an explorer through these cave churches. I discovered ingenious closing systems like this stone wheel on a slope which obstructs the passage in the case of an attack. The wheel is still there but be reassured that it has been moved aside!

Continuing en route towards Belisirma, small cafes are placed on stilts on the river which is very original and pleasant after the walk. Going further, I came across some locals who were working on small plots of land and responded politely to my 'merhaba'. One woman even agreed to translate a traditional Turkish song for me. The path leads to the village of Selime where minibuses will drive you back to the departure point. You can also continue towards Belisirma. Be aware that there is an admission fee to enter the valley.

Ihlara Valley seen from the entrance of a troglodytic church.