About Cappadocia, Monks Valley

Pasabag or Pasha's Vineyard, is situated on the Zelve road between the popular town of Goreme and traditional pottery making town Avanos. Here you can find spectacular cone topped rock pillars known as Fairy Chimneys standing tall through out the vineyard, Pasha was a in important officer in Ottoman times when the region was captured. However Pasabag is more commonly known as Monks Valley, it earned its name from the many monk refuges carved into the soft rock cones.

St Simeon was one of the many monks to take refuge in Cappadocia, attracted by the solitude and isolation that the region provided, St Simon built his home 15 meters above the ground in one the fairy chimneys, descending only to collect the offerings of food and water that his followers brought to him. By the 4th century Cappadocia was largely inhabited by monks and many of their excavated homes can be found in this valley. The monks were able to hollow out the soft volcanic tuff inside the pillars and create narrow staircases leading up to the cone shaped shelters which they used as living quarters. For a fantastic views of the area you can crawl inside the rock and climb the staircases to gaze out over the moon-like landscape. Also in the valley you can visit a chapel dedicated to St Simeon and abandoned hermit cave homes.

The Fairy Chimneys in monks valley are certainly the most impressive of the Cappadocia region, some pillars are 15 meters tall and split into twin chimneys, some even support three chimneys. The mushroom shaped pillars have formed due to the effects of wind and rain on the soft rock but they have become widely known as fairy chimneys; legends say they were built by the fairy's for their underground homes.

Monks Valley is only few kilometers from Goreme, you could combine it with a visit to the Open Air Museum or a trip to the man-made stone dovecote in Pigeons Valley, Daily Cappadocia Tours also stop here.