Near Istanbul, just half an hour by ferry from the port of Eminönü, is this little fishing village. It's gorgeous, because despite being very touristy (is the last port on the Bosphorus ferry) and although the waiters will haunt you to sit at an empty table for lunch, you'll see picturesque corners full of tranquility. It's imperative to eat fish as it's very fresh.
Visiting the village of Çavusin is going back to a completely different time. If the Cappadocian landscape doesn't give you a foreign sensation, visiting this small town is like stepping into another world. Those of you who are seeking an authentic rural experience in Cappadocia absolutely have to visit this place that's about six kilometers from Göreme. Walking among the vineyards and fields you'll approach the beautiful cemetery, which must be passed with respect. The village is always quiet, only two busy little tourist-oriented restaurants break the silence. Across the village, all surrounding you smile, eager to help and curious to see a rare tourist. And, simply raise your head to see the Çavusin old, abandoned an entire city carved into rock that must be accessed by steep stairs and ramps. Amazing place, little known but highly accessible.
Avanos was a town especially important during the prebizantina era. It's currently known for its pottery. Not only is it for sale, given its various small and artisanl factories, but also this ceramic ornament serves public places. For example, the pitchers that are placed on the banks of Kizilirmak (Red River), from the road. Although until twenty years ago, everyboy was a Potter, these days only about 200 make their living exclusively with this profession... apparently. This town also lies equidistant from other interesting places of Cappadocia.
Istanbul is perfect for a pleasant walk, with the mosque of Bosphorus, little bars, tea shops and small shops along the river. You can take the vapur (a sort of water bus) to one of the stops near Ortakoy and take a walk around the neighborhood, through to ortakoy sultanamhed, besiktas, square taksim, istihkbal and Galata bridge ....
If you fancy exploring the Costa Licia in 'gulet' (traditional wooden boats), with delicious food, stay in a comfortable small hotel and spend a few days, Kas is the place you should go. The town revolves around its harbor where fantastic yachts with flags from different countries and old gulets are docked. In front of it, almost like a lighthouse, stands the white minaret of a mosque. Kas is a city for travelers and sailors who love the good life. In the lovely cobbled streets, shaded by bougainvillea and jasmine, abound carpets and antiques shops and beautiful restaurants serving typical Turkish delight. There is nothing like returning to Kas after a boat trip to Cachet. The sunset colors everything red, gulets return to port, and the terraces of restaurants, and some diners light lanterns.
From the Valley of Goreme, you take Avanos road to Urgup. Although not specifically recommended in the guidebooks, it is a good place to eat cheaply (real "Turkish Food"), buy souvenirs and, above all, to see the transition of a troglodyte village to a town. Walking or rather climbing through the streets of this town helps us understand the lifestyle and culture of the place. It is irresistible to occasionally stop by the side of the road to take pictures of the scenery ...
Like Mustafapasa, Ortahisar is another interesting and lovely town in Cappadocia. Few tourists visit. The old town is located at the end of modern Ortahisar, around the great castle-very run down-of Byzantine perched on a rock. From the old citadel you can see the panorama of the mountain. Almost all are uninhabited appear like purple ghosts. The village is very quiet but if you walk around the old town you can discover places full of life. You'll see a couple of ceramic factories, some Cappadocia wine cellars, and antique shops with hidden treasures several centuries old.
Selçuk, besides being the nearest town to the ruins of Ephesus, is the perfect place to spend a day. It's small, only 25,000 inhabitants, yet offers all the comforts for the traveler while not losing its tranquil atmosphere. In addition to the many things that can be seen here, the houses and the surrounding environment justify a visit. Surrounded by green meadows, orchards, hammanes in ruins -any excuse to go through it and enjoy nature. In addition, the center is fairly lively with great priced restaurants, it's possible, for example, to sample delicious Turkish pizza plus an Efes beer for about 3 euros. Especially beautiful is the Byzantine aqueduct that is fairly well preserved and runs partly through the town - look up high to see the huge nests of storks. A perfect place to spend the night, chatting quietly with the locals and wandering through green surroundings.
The imposing citadel of Selçuk is on Ayasluk Hill, the same that St. John wrote about in his Gospel. It's possible to climb it from the Basilica of St. John and the views are pretty good. It was built by the Byzantines in the sixth century, and rebuilt by the Selyúcidad to restore it back to the modern age. Inside you can see a Seljuk mosque and a ruined church, but the citadel remains closed due to the partial collapse of a wall, it's still being restored. Despite not having access to the interior it's worth going to see it up close. The vision of the citadel on top, with the cloudy sky, is breathtaking. By the way locals to sneak inside to sell old coins. It's highly recommended to follow guidelines.
Passing Çavusin through Urgup, find Zelve, a small town famous above all for having its own Open Air Museum, a little smaller than that of Göreme. Zelve was a monastic retreat between the ninth and twelfth centuries, inhabited until 1952. In that year it was decided that, due to collapses, the place was too dangerous to live in and villagers were relocated a few miles away in New Zelve. The place is, therefore, uninhabited, but is a good place to recharge your batteries in one of the teahouses and there is outdoor parking at the Open Air Museum. In addition to tea shops, the craft stalls are very interesting and the alkanes are especially nice as not many tourists come from other sites of Cappadocia. A warning: be extremely careful with bus schedules back. The last may leave at five p.m. or before and you miss the bus, the only way to reach the nearby towns is by taxi or hitchhiking. Go early!
Karamürsel is another one of the many coastal towns that mark the entrance of the Bosphorus in Istanbul. If you travel along the coast, you can see beautiful scenery, as well as finding small villages like this one where you can enjoy sunsets that you'll want to always remember.