The Ihlara Valley is a stunning natural wonder located in the Aksaray province of Turkey. It is a popular destination for hikers, nature lovers, and anyone seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.
One of the best ways to experience the beauty of the Ihlara Valley is by embarking on a day hike through its winding trails and lush greenery. The valley is home to a network of hiking paths that follow the Melendiz River, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.
As you make your way through the valley, you’ll encounter a variety of flora and fauna, including olive trees, pomegranate bushes, and a wide range of bird species. You may even spot a few of the valley’s resident rock hyraxes, small mammals that resemble guinea pigs.
The Ihlara Valley is also home to a number of ancient churches and monasteries, many of which were carved into the rock walls of the valley during the Byzantine era. These structures are not only important religious sites, but also serve as a testament to the ingenuity and perseverance of the people who built them.
One of the most famous churches in the Ihlara Valley is the Ağaçaltı Church, also known as the “Tree-Shaded Church.” This beautifully preserved structure is adorned with frescoes depicting scenes from the Bible, including the life of Jesus and the stories of various saints. The frescoes are well-preserved and offer a glimpse into the art and culture of the Byzantine era.
Another notable church in the Ihlara Valley is the Sümbüllü Church, which is known for its intricate carvings and frescoes. The church’s frescoes depict scenes from the Old and New Testaments, as well as portraits of various saints. The carvings on the walls and ceiling are equally impressive, featuring geometric patterns and floral motifs.
In addition to the Ağaçaltı and Sümbüllü churches, there are several other ancient churches and monasteries worth visiting in the Ihlara Valley. These include the Agacalti Kilise, the Yilanli Church, and the Karagedik Church.
After a day of hiking through the stunning Ihlara Valley and visiting its ancient churches, it’s time to sit back and relax. As the sun begins to set, you can find a quiet spot by the river and watch the shadows stretch out across the landscape. You’ll feel a sense of peace and tranquility wash over you, a feeling that can only come from being surrounded by nature and history.
Join us on our magical visit in the Ihlara Valley and watch us climb, explore and enjoy intensly in this wonderful area of Turkey and watch all our adventures here on Youtube: www.youtube.com/@dutchsailingfamily