Woman in traditional Turkish dress gazing at the sun

4D3N itinerary in Cappadocia, Turkey

In Cappadocia, Halal Travel Guide, Turkey by Soumaya Hamdi

Planning a trip to Cappadocia but not sure where to start? We’ve planned a 4 day 3 night trip for you!

Day 1

Arrive at your hotel in Cappadocia. Check-in and rest.
Head into the town in the evening for dinner. Check out our list of recommended restaurants and explore the local area and try and nab a ride in one of the horse and carriages.

Day 2

turkish breakfast with sunny side up eggs, olives, jam and fruits

Traditional Turkish breakfast

Have breakfast at your cave hotel and enjoy the morning views of the fairy chimneys. Try the locals’ favourite dipping sauce combination of Tahini with grape molasses, and relieve some of the jet lag with some freshly squeezed orange juice.

Explore the local area on a private tour, either by hiring a car, private driver or personal tour guide. First stop is the Goreme Open Air Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage site which dates back to Byzantine times when it was a key monastic settlement. You will have the chance to enter churches, chapels and monasteries, that have been cut into the rock faces, some of which are the oldest in the world. Allow around 2 hours to explore the Museum, and keep an eye out for the ancient frescoes inside the cave walls.

A short drive from the museum is Pigeon Valley – leave half a day to explore this beautiful valley that looks straight out of a J.R.R Tolkien novel. Wear comfortable shoes and bring a bottle of water as it gets really hot in Cappadocia right up into the end of September (around 27 degrees Celsius).

Next, take a 10 minute drive to Uchisar castle, the highest point in the region. The castle, once used as a the main point of defence, is a great spot to capture panoramic views of Cappadocia, fairy chimneys and all. If you plan your day right it is also a great place for Golden Hour and sunset shots. Explore the outer walls of the castle where ancient cave homes have been carved into the walls and are open for visitors to explore.

Finish off your day with a traditional Turkish meal back in the town of Goreme.

Exteriors of the Dark Church at Goreme Open Air Museum in Cappadocia, Turkey.

Exteriors of the Dark Church at Goreme Open Air Museum in Cappadocia, Turkey

Day 3

Be ready for an early start (pickup at 5 am) and a true bucket list experience – today is the day you ride a hot air balloon! There are many companies to book your experience with, and the price can vary depending on how busy the season is. We recommend Kapadokya balloons for an excellent pilot and overall flying experience, but speak to your hotel, as they may be able to barter a good price for you with their preferred company.

You’ll return to the hotel at around 8 am, in time for breakfast over which you can relive your incredible experience. You can then rest for a few hours or head straight into your next adventure.

green red and blue hot air balloons over arid terrain

Hot air balloons over Cappadocia

We suggest you hire a private tour guide (your hotel will have one or be able to organise it for you) to explore the surrounding areas at your own leisure, but with the added benefit of a local’s knowledge and expertise of the region and its history. We took a private tor with the professional tour guides from the Vineyard Cave Hotel, and would highly recommend them for a lively, historical and entertaining experience. Start off with Ozkonak Underground City. Something you will quickly realise about Cappadocia is that it must have a lack of lawyers, because most of the museums and heritage sites offer complete access to visitors – no red ropes, woohoo!

Next, take a drive to Mustafapasha, once known as Sinasos, when it was populated primarily by Greeks. Park the car and explore the town on foot, where you can get up close and personal with the Mediterranean vibe that oozes from the Greek houses and buildings.

At this point you will probably want to grab a bite to eat. Allow your tour guide to direct you to some of the local favourites, or check out our own recommendations.

Finish off your day with a visit to Devrent Valley and Pashabagi, where you may also find the opportunity to embark on a horse or camel ride.

Day 4

Today is the day to join a group tour, specifically to the one that takes you to south-west Cappadocia. Explore one of the larger underground cities – Kaymakli or Derinkuyu – both of which are connected to each other via tunnels. Flintstones Travel are reputed to be a good tour operator. The local houses were each made with access to the tunnels so that families could flee underground during times of persecution. Now they are used as a storage facilities for anything from cars to lemons (we are told that lemons stored underground here have an incredible taste).

You will also have the chance to visit the Ihlara Valley, a beautiful green contrast to the rock that characterises Cappadocia’s plains.

camel with traditional Turkish rug draped on its back

Photo credit: Markim

Take a stop at Nar Gölü (Lake Pomegranate), which was formed when a volcano blew its top. The hot sulphurous water is supposed to be great for the skin, but we don’t advise you to take a dip!

Inspired to book your trip to Cappadocia? Keep an eye out for our travel guide, the essential planning tool to having an unforgettable holiday.

long stretch of black tarmach surrounding by mountains in cappadocia

Road tripping through Cappadocia. Photo credit: HijabimeetsWorld