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KAYMAKLI

GOREME
AVANOS
CAVUSİN
ZELVE
IHLARA VALLEY
UÇHİSAR
ÜRGÜP
DERİNKUYU
KAYMAKLI
PASABAGI
 
KAYMAKLI
KAYMAKLI
Kaymaklı underground city is built under the hill known as the Citadel of Kaymaklı, in the centre of the town 19km from Nevehir, on the Nevşehir - Niğde road. It was opened to visitors in 1964. In the village of Kaymaklı, the ancient name of which was Enegup, the people have constructed their houses around nearly one hundred tunnels of the underground city. The inhabitants of the region still use the most convenient places in the tunnels as cellars, storage areas and stables, which they access through their courtyards.

Kaymaklı Underground City is different from Derinkuyu Underground City in terms of both form and organization. The passages are low, narrow and sloping. Only 4 floors are open to the public, in which the spaces are organized around the ventilation shafts. On the first floor of this underground city is the stable. The small size of this area suggests that there could be other stables in sections that have not yet been opened. The passage to the left of the stable contains a millstone door and leads into the church. To the right of the corridor are rooms hollowed out as living areas. The church of the 2nd floor has a single nave and two apses. In front of the apses is a baptism stone, and on the sides are seating platforms. The graves on this floor are located next to the church, supporting the idea that these graves belonged to religious people. There are also some living areas on this floor.

The most important areas of the underground city are on the 3rd floor. Besides numerous storage places, wineries and kitchen, the block of andesite with relief-texture found on this floor is very interesting. Recent research has proved that this stone was used as a melting pot for copper. The stone was not brought here from outside but was part of the andesite layer unearthed while hollowing. To be able to use it as a melting pot, 57 holes were carved on the surface of the stone. The copper ore, about 10 cm in length, would be put into one of those holes and would be hammered using a hard piece of rock. This technique has been known since the Prehistoric Periods. The copper brought to Kaymaklı Underground City was probably dug from a quarry between Aksaray and Nevşehir. (The same quarry was also used by the people of Asiklihöyük, the oldest known settlement in Cappadocia Region.) The fact that there are a lot of storage rooms and places to put earthenware jars in the wineries on the 4th floor indicates that the people living in this underground city were economically stable. Even though the whole city has not been completely opened, and since only 4 floors have been uncovered, it is certain that Kaymaklı is one of the largest underground settlements in the region. The number of the storage rooms in such a small area supports the idea that a great number of people resided here.
 
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