Churches and Monasteries in Cappadocia

The rock cut churches and monasteries were developed by the Christians from the cave dwellings and they are also situated deep underground. These excavations have reached down to about 85 meters, or until the water level has been reached, and are marked with efficient ventilation systems. There are many settlements in Cappadocia that were established primarily as ascetic communities following the rules mentioned by Bishop of Caesarea Mazaca in the 4th century, St. Basil the Great.

Goreme Valley is famous for its churches and these churches followed the rules laid down by St. Basil the Great. In fact it was under his guidance that the first churches of Goreme Valley were built. Presently the Goreme Valley with its numerous small communities having their own churches forming large monastic complex serves the purpose of the Open Air Museum.

The most striking monastery in Cappadocia is the Eskigumus Monastery, its main church is roomy and well ventilated, but the main point of interest lies in its well-preserved frescoes that are considered the best representative of Byzantine art in all of Cappadocia.