Erosion has shaped the incredible landscape of the valley of Goreme. Taking a note of themselves, people, thousands of years ago, began to create their creations, knocking out rooms and even entire tunnel complexes in this soft and pliable breed. Starting from the 4th century AD a whole urbanized, underground cultural landscape was created.
Many years ago, during volcanic eruptions, this region was covered with a thick layer of ash tens of meters thick, which hardened and formed soft rocks called tuff. Wind and water have done their job, leaving behind more solid rocks, forming an incredible, fabulous landscape in the form of cones, pillars, turrets, mushrooms and chimneys that rise to 40 meters in height.
But human hands were able to do no less ambitious work. The rocky wonderland is dotted with a network of man-made caves: living quarters, places of worship, stables, and warehouses — all of these were carved into soft rock. The tunnel complexes formed whole cities with an eight-story house hidden under the ground.
Goreme was inhabited even in the era of the Hittites (1800 to 1200 BC) and was located on the border between competing empires. At first it was the Greeks and Persians, and later the Byzantine Greeks and their numerous rivals. Such a precarious political situation led to the fact that residents were looking for shelter, places hidden from view, and created temporary or permanent dwellings in the soft rocks of these rocks.
Later, the territory became a religious haven in the early days of Christianity. By the fourth century, Christians fleeing the persecution of Rome came here and created monastic communities. Monks beat out extensive dwellings and monasteries in the rocks, and starting in the seventh century, you can find frescoes in rock churches that have been preserved in good condition to this day.
Goreme is rich in history, but not all human creations in the rocks are a museum. Some are still used as houses; others like hotels that offer a truly unique hospitality experience.
The main threat to this World Heritage site comes from the forces that, first of all, created it. Erosion forces a person to take extensive measures to preserve this amazing place so that it can survive for more than one thousand years. Also, with the growth of tourism, man has given rise not only to modern development, but also to irreversible processes, and even the destruction of certain creations, which he himself once created.