Cappadocia is a magical region in central Turkey. Far from Istanbul and the Turkish coast, Cappadocia is a completely unique landscape, culture and history from everywhere else in the country.
Famous for its peculiar rock formations and natural caves, fair house hotels and its unbelievable ancient history, there is plenty to see and explore in this region.
However, Cappadocia is huge, and spans for more than 5000 square kilometers, which makes deciding on where to stay in Cappadocia quite difficult.
But don’t worry, I’m here to help with that. Though it’s a large landscape, many of the top sites and attractions are easily accessible by public transport. But if you have a short time to see it all, you’ll want to know the best neighborhood to stay in close to the attractions you want to see.
In this guide, I have detailed the best neighborhoods in Cappadocia as well as the main things to do in each area, so you can make an informed decision about where is best to stay for you.
As well as this, I’ve also listed some of my top recommendations for places to stay. With a range of budget-friendly and high-end accommodation to choose from, there’s something for everyone in Cappadocia.
So, let’s jump right in!
Cappadocia is one of the best places to stay in Turkey. If you’re looking for the best accommodation regardless of area, take a look below for my top picks for the best places to stay in Cappadocia.
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Best Airbnb in Cappadocia: Anitya Dublex Stone House
This stunning traditional stone house is ideal for families and guests visiting Cappadocia. With an original stone terrace, guests can enjoy views over the area and a place to relax in the sun. The house includes a full kitchen and bathroom and sleeps up to four people. The village center is just a 5-minute walk away, where you’ll find the ancient Ortahisar Castle.
Best Hostel in Ürgüp: Naturels Cave House
This hostel provides travelers with authentic accommodation at an affordable price. Private and dorm rooms are on offer, with breakfast included in the majority of bookings. Guests can also enjoy free wifi in each room. The house is within walking distance to the town centre and numerous attractions, including the Dark Church and Urgup Museum.
Best Hotel in Cappadocia: Evi Cave Hotel
This hotel provides an authentic stay in Cappadocia. With friendly, helpful staff and a relaxing atmosphere, this place really makes guests feel special.
Packed full of history that in some parts of the hotel dates back to the 2nd century, stay in one of their carefully designed rooms and enjoy breakfast with views of the distant mountains.
Evi Cave Hotel is one of our favourites in Cappadocia but they’re not taking guests right now. We’re not sure if they’re closed for good but we hope they’ll come back soon.
Cappadocia Neighborhood Guide – Places to Stay in Cappadocia
Formerly known by a few different names, Göreme changed its name when the nearby Göreme Valley began to thrive as a tourist destination.
South of Göreme lies Uçhisar, a quieter alternative base for exploring the captivating region of Cappadocia. The town’s houses sweep up to (and into) the iconic hill that lies at the center of Uçhisar
Home to some of the most luxurious boutique hotels in Cappadocia, Ürgüp also has a modern downtown for when you’re tired of the small lanes and quiet atmosphere of the old town.
Riverside Avanos is a relatively chilled out town in Cappadocia. The tourist trail doesn’t really extend to Avanos as a destination in itself, but instead, tourists come to admire the pottery which this town is famous for.
Ancient cobbled streets, ruins of stone houses, charming town squares: Ortahisar is like the beating heart of a Cappadocia long lost to the pages of history.
Cappadocia is famous for its rock formations, luxury cave hotels, sunrise hot air balloons, and its staggering ancient history. When it comes to choosing a place to stay, it is important to think about what activities you want to do as the region is massive.
Most people tend to stay in the town of Göreme, which is home to a number of Cappadocia’s best things to do including the Göreme Open Air Museum – a collection of cave churches from the 10th to the 12th centuries AD. It’s the best place to come for getting to know the region.
If you are looking for a little more luxury, Uçhisar is a colorful and family-friendly region in Turkey that is full of luxury cave hotels and hiking paths through Goreme National Park. Atop the hill is the incredible Uçhisar Castle, a massive rock with a castle’s worth of rooms carved into it. It’s also on the bus route to Goreme and other popular towns so there’s plenty to see and do here to keep everyone entertained.
One of the largest towns in Cappadocia, Ürgüp provides luxury accommodation for an unforgettable stay. There’s an upmarket downtown area and plenty of opportunities for fantastic excursions.
If you’re looking for a town with more western amenities, aka a Starbucks, the town of Avanos is a slow-paced provincial town on the banks of the ‘Red River’. There’s not much of a tourist scene here, and so accommodation tends to be cheaper, making it great for Turkey backpackers looking to get off the beaten path.
Finally, Ortahisar is the coolest place to stay in Cappadocia. It provides a perfect blend of historic and contemporary sites, so you can experience the very best of both worlds.
If you’re still unsure, read on for a more in-depth guide to Cappadocia’s different neighborhoods, and the best things to do in each area.
Cappadocia’s 5 Best Areas to Stay In
Now you’ve got a sense of the best areas to stay in Cappadocia, let’s look at these are top areas in Cappadocia in more detail. Plus, I have some recommendations for accommodations that are suitable for any travel style and budget!
If it’s your first time visiting the fairytale landscape of Cappadocia then Göreme has got to be the perfect base. It’s an ideal place to visit for those who want to experience the best of this region of Turkey.
The town is at the heart of the Cappadocia area offering the best transport connections to other areas of the region and the country as a whole. Not only that but it’s the ideal place if you want to book tours of the area including visits to the more remote spots as well as hot air balloon trips.
Closer to Göreme itself there are heaps of awesome hiking trails you can take right from your hotel door. It’s also the top spot to witness the hot air balloons at sunrise from just above the town.
It’s a pretty small town too that can easily be covered on foot. There are plenty of great restaurants for all budgets where you can try dishes such as pides (Turkish flatbread pizzas) and Gözleme (savoury stuffed turnovers). There are also some smaller cafes as well as supermarkets for those on a mega-tight budget.
The town is pretty touristy, to be honest, with most establishments being aimed towards visitors rather than locals, but it still retains unique charm due to the number of fairy chimneys actually dotted in and around the town itself.
In fact, one of the most fun things to do here is stay inside one of the cave hotels! Forget some kind of Neanderthal dusty dwelling, these are pretty much luxury hotels inside many of the ancient homes of the town. Can’t afford a luxury hotel? Well, you’re not going to miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience either, because they even have a cave hostel, how freaking cool is that!?
Best Hostel in Göreme: Kamelya Cave Hostel
Yes, you read that correctly, there’s a Cave Hostel in Goreme and it’s bloody epic! This small hostel not only offers two cave dorm rooms (one mixed, one female only) but it offers reasonably priced ensuite privates too!
You even get a traditional Turkish breakfast served on the terrace overlooking the town where you can spot the hot air balloons at sunrise! World’s best hostel or what!?
Best Hostel in Göreme: Whisper Cave House
This hostel in Göreme is ideal for solo travelers or couples on a budget. Guests can enjoy breakfast with a view of the hot air balloons and valleys on the outdoor terrace each morning. Private rooms come with ensuite bathrooms, and all dorms have free internet access. The town centre is a short walk away, and staff is happy to help organise your activities and excursions.
Best Hotel in Göreme: Imperial Cave Hotel
Spend peaceful nights sleeping in a room carved into a cave. The luxurious surroundings of the Imperial Cave hotel are just a short walk from the city centre and the best things to see in Cappadocia!
The cave hotel boasts a beautiful terrace where guests enjoy sunset meals with views of the hot air balloons. Rooms are spacious and comfortable with a side of luxury; some even come with an open fireplace and sauna.
Top Things to do in Göreme, Turkey:
- Mountain bike through Göreme’s rugged valleys.
- Get lost in the stunning Göreme Open Air Museum – a UNESCO World Heritage Site showcasing the rock architecture of the region.
- Try a ‘pottery kebab’ – break open the pottery to reveal your chosen dish.
- Catch a glimpse of the legendary fairy chimneys, Cappadocia’s mystical color-changing rock formations.
- Try a spot of valley hiking (but stay hydrated)…
- Feel the romance of the grassy Love Valley.
- Check out the varied natural rock formations at Devrent Valley.
- Wonder at the sharp scenery of Zemi Valley.
- Visit Cavusin Greek Village with its labyrinthine cave homes and the 5th-century Monastery of John the Baptist.
- Admire the famous rugs and carpets that Göreme is famous for – and try your hand at haggling.
- View the spectacular scenery with a hot air balloon tour at sunrise.
- Catch a magnificent sunset and watch the town change color.
- Take a tour to the Underground City and Ihlara Valley.
- Finish it all off with a relaxing trip to the local hammam (Turkish bath).
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Uçhisar is a quieter base for exploring the captivating region of Cappadocia. The town is home to the amazing Uçhisar Castle, a warren of tunnels with a stunning vista over the surrounding area from its top.
Uçhisar is less touristy, and a great choice for those looking to get more off the beaten path. It’s close to many hiking trails and the bus route to many attractions in the region, so you’ll never run short of activities.
Best Hotel in Uçhisar: Serenity Hotel
Each room in the Serenity Hotel boasts an ensuite bathroom, wifi, and tea/coffee makers. Meals can be enjoyed at the excellent onsite hotel restaurant, which provides a buffet breakfast and a taste of Turkish cuisine. This luxury hotel is clean and central, featuring traditional furnishings. Guests can also enjoy stunning views over the city from the rooftop deck.
Best Guest House in Uçhisar: Anatolia Raymonde Cave House
With a variety of rooms available, this guest house is ideal for families traveling to Cappadocia. It’s ideally located close to Cappadocia National Park and Uçhisar Castle, and staff is on-hand to help organise excursions, making your trip as stress-free as possible. Each room comes with an ensuite bathroom, and a buffet breakfast is served each morning.
Top Things to do in Uçhisar:
- Explore Uçhisar Castle and the extensive caves that shoot through the hill underneath it.
- Be adventurous and explore the cave houses of Pigeon Valley.
- Hike to White Valley via the trail starting in town.
- Enjoy a sunset ATV tour through the valleys.
- Do a spot of wine-tasting at Kocabag Winery.
- Check out one of the local stores specializing in onyx ornaments.
- Wow your taste buds with the Anatolian cuisine cooked by locals at the cosy Sakl.
- Relax at Kapadokya Peri Cave – a cafe with a fairy chimney for a terrace.
- Enjoy horseback riding through Love Valley.
Ürgüp also has a modern downtown area, home to some of the most luxurious boutique hotels in Cappadocia. It’s the place to be if you like things local but equipped with modern amenities.
It isn’t packed with nightlife options, but Ürgüp is well-positioned for exploring more of what the enchanting Cappadocia region has to offer.
Best Hostel in Ürgüp: Naturels Cave House
Ürgüp lacks hostel accommodation, but Pansiyon has everything you need for an exceptional stay. The natural cave house is set in a 300-year-old building and is run by a very welcoming family.
Just steps away from the centre of the action, you can choose from a private stone room or shared cave room. Breakfast is served on the terrace daily.
Best Hotel in Ürgüp: Kayakapi Premium Caves Cappadocia
Choose to stay in the lap of luxury at this beautifully designed boutique hotel. Set in the rocky hillside, each room is unique and the staff is happy to help out with every aspect of your stay.
The cave hotel sits just 5 miles away from Göreme National Park, and a shuttle can be arranged to take you to the town centre. It also boasts a spa and heated outdoor swimming pool – the perfect place to unwind after a busy day’s sightseeing.
Things to do in Ürgüp:
- Spare some good thoughts at Temenni Wishing Hill, learn about St. John the Russian and see the tomb.
- Go and see the grand mosque at the center of town.
- Check out Ürgüp’s charming belediye – town hall…
- … And visit Ürgüp Museum just across the road for some history lessons.
- Hop on a water taxi and take in the stunning views of the town from a different angle.
- Go wine-tasting at Turasan Winery, where the Greek-Ottoman tradition continues.
- Snap a sunset pic at the iconic landmark that is Three Graces Fairy Chimneys.
- Marvel at the surreal moonscape of Pancarlik Valley.
- Take a road trip south to mystifying Sobesos – a 4th-century Roman city.
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Riverside Avanos is a relatively chilled-out town in Cappadocia. The tourist trail doesn’t really extend to Avanos as a destination in itself, but some tourists come to admire the pottery which this town is famous for.
You’ll feel like you almost have the town to yourself, especially wandering around the narrow lanes that snake up into the Anatolian hills.
Greek-Ottoman architecture still has a place here, and there are a few grand houses in town that will catch your eye. Plus, if you’re missing the comforts from home, you’ll find a Mcdonald’s and Starbucks here.
Best Hostel in Avanos: Kirkit Pension
Pension is perfect for those backpacking with friends. Choose from a selection of private double, triple, or family rooms, all that is set inside a picturesque garden.
The quiet village and friendly local atmosphere will expose you to traditional life in the Cappadocia region.
Best Hotel in Avanos: Riverside Mansion Hotel
Contemporary decor added with charming, traditional furnishings makes this luxury hotel the perfect place to stay. The peaceful riverside gives guests the chance to relax in picture-perfect surroundings.
Top Things do in Avanos:
- See the pottery artisans at work – and maybe grab a souvenir or two.
- Take a signposted walking tour of Avanos and admire its charming historical buildings.
- Walk the Torre di Grado overlooking the sea and take in the stunning Italian scenery.
- Go on a relaxing and romantic gondola ride along the river…
- … Or a more hair-raising jet boat ride!
- Visit the ancient Zelve Open Air Museum on the slopes of the White Mountain, home to the highest number of chimney fairies in Cappadocia.
- Explore the ancient and incredibly unique Özkonak Underground City to the north.
- And of course, catch a beautiful riverside sunset whilst sipping çay – Turkish tea.
Ancient cobbled streets, ruins of stone houses, and charming town squares: Ortahisar is like the beating heart of a Cappadocia long lost to history. Donkeys pulling carts regularly trot through town, and old men linger over çay at street-side cafes.
Ortahisar is home to a growing number of boutique guesthouses and luxury hotels as the world gets wise to the surreal beauty of this small Anatolian town.
Best Hotel in Ortahisar: Asyada Suites Hotel
This hostel has everything you could want from budget accommodation in Cappadocia, including breakfast, valet parking, and wifi. Most of Cappadocia’s attractions are within walking distance, including the Dark Church and Open Air Museum. The hostel is ideal for couples and families visiting Turkey.
Best Hotel in Ortahisar: Ortahisar Cave Hotel
With complimentary breakfast for the budget-conscious and reasonably priced rooms, this wallet-friendly cave hotel fills the gap for hostel accommodation in Ortahisar. The laid-back atmosphere and Ottoman-style decor of the rooms will enchant you into relaxing on a rugged, rocky backdrop.
Things to See and Do in Ortahisar:
- Visit Uzengi Valley and check out the views from one of its pigeon-house caves.
- Go admire Ortahisar’s kalesi (‘castle’) perched atop a jagged, alien-like rock – said by locals to be the tallest fairy chimney in Cappadocia.
- Marvel at the collection of antiques and knick-knacks at the eccentric House of Memories.
- Rise and shine to a sunrise viewed from the centre of town near the castle.
- Get to know more about the area via the Ethnographic and Culture Museum.
- Tuck into the highly recommended juicy lamb tandir at Evi Tandir.
- Relax at Ali Baba Cafe and admire the view down across Ortahisar.
- Simply walk around, get lost, and soak up the atmosphere of Cappadocia’s most authentic town.
FAQ about Finding a Place to Stay in Cappadocia
Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Cappadocia and where to stay.
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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Cappadocia
It’s undeniable that visiting Cappadocia is one of the coolest things to do in Turkey. From its ancient historical roots to its stunning natural landscape, it’s a destination that every backpacker in Turkey must see.
Whatever you’re after, there’s a neighborhood of Cappadocia to suit you. Most people choose to stay in Göreme, but each town offers its own unique views, activities, and atmospheres.
If you’re still unsure where to stay in Cappadocia, you can’t go wrong with Naturels Cave House. Super affordable and close to everything, it’s the ideal base for experiencing the region. For something more upmarket, Evi Cave Hotel is my other top pick, thanks to its laidback atmosphere and helpful staff!
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