June 23, 2010

Colourful Christian frescoes inside a cave, Goreme, Cappadocia, Turkey

Location: Frescoes in Elmali Kilise, Goreme Open Air Museum, Cappadocia, Turkey (38° 40′ 0″ N, 34° 50′ 0″ E)
Date: 11 April 2010, 11.20am
Camera: Canon 400D with Canon 70-200/f4L USM

Cappadocia is one of few places that I really enjoy in Turkey. Don’t get me wrong, Turkey is a fabulous destination to spend a few weeks- it has incredible history and heritage, beautiful coastline and an incredible atmosphere and culture, being at the crossroad between east and West. At some point, one feels like in Europe but most of the time feeling this is Asia with its population, Central Asia/Middle Eastern culture, practices and heritage. Well, the people look Middle Eastern anyway. It is precisely such familiarity (to me anyway) that I did not feel as excited as I should while travelling in Turkey. I am a person more inclined towards landscape, history and culture; in terms of landscape, I was not as fascinated as I was in some other countries. Cappadocia is the standout. Its unique natural wonders of moon-like landscape, fairy chimneys, underground cities, cave churches and houses carved in the rocks is just simply awesome and breathtaking. It is relatively inexpensive compared to the rest of Turkey and one can easily spend a week or so, just relaxing in the amazing landscape. Goreme in the centre of Cappadocia has some of the finest rock-cut churches, with beautiful and colourful Christian frescoes. Elmali Kilise (Apple Church) is one of the most beautiful and intact of the churches.

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