Paşabağları / Monks' Valley
Updated: Oct 5, 2020
Paşabağları, so called Monks' Valley, is one of the sites of fairy chimneys where you can walk among them. Possibly, it's the best site to see the chapters of erosion of tufa. Multi-headed formation in chimney forms shows you the way of erosion ; they are getting split by the water between the conic tops little by little and getting smaller and throat part getting thiner. You can see one of them is about to fall.
Moreover up on the slopes, you may see some that new conic tops began to be formed. Hopefully, one day, there will be fairy chimneys like the ones you can see on the site today. On the other hand, on the other side of way, it's possible to see some little pieces of tuff stone which used to be fairy chimneys once upon a time but already and almost finished by erosion.
In deed, Paşabağları is like a garden of Cappadocia. Walking among the formations, grapes and apricot trees around you and little alcoves into the tufa rock allow you to get character of Cappadocia. Even, if you visit here in june, you would have a chance to taste Cappadocian apricots or in september and October to taste grapes.
Besides these, you can see a small hermitage where Greek Orthodox Monks lived until the exchange of populations in 1924. You may go into some of the caves on the lower story but to the upper levels you need climb through a little hole in one of the rooms. As followers of St. Simon, these hermits tried to be away from everything to be in their innerself and prefered to live such places. After exchange, such places were used by locals for various purposes. For instance, this hermitage is estimated to be used by sepherd as stable because little holes carved on the walls of cave rooms as mangers.
There is another cave hermitage, too, in Monks' Valley with some graves inside and outside of it. We assume that that was a kind of grave chapel. For this, it's not possible to go in because of the safety precautions. But you may have a look from outside of it.
We recommend you to walk on the hill, too. You can have a different angle to see the formation of Cappadocia. Only mind your steps!