Cappadocia Hot Air Balloon. Instagram and Facebook are overflowing with photographs and posts from Cappadocia. And for good reason. Cappadocia located in central Turkey is a must-see. And hands down the best way to take in this magnificent panorama is from a hot air balloon. Cappadocia is a fairy tale setting of protruding rock chimneys. In centuries past, these rock formations were hollowed out to make homes and serve as ancient Orthodox churches. Today, your hotel might be located in one of these rock chimneys.
Hot Air Balloon
Part of the tourist ecosystem are the dozens of hot air ballooning companies that are vying for your business. I chose to work with Butterfly Balloons. Before choosing Butterfly I was overviewing the many options and checking the longevity of the different companies. Butterfly has been in business for over seven years and had excellent reviews on TripAdvisor.
In darkness, a minivan picked me up in the darkness at the hotel and brought me to the Butterfly office where I checked in. I munched on a light breakfast. We were then escorted to a field where dozens of balloons lay spread out. Industrial fans were fired up, and hot air was blown into the inert balloons. Within minutes, multiple balloons stood sentry. My group hopped into the balloon and the captain launched us into the air.
For the next hour, we glided breathlessly through the air, absorbing the beauty of the panorama.
The morning ended with a celebratory glass of champagne mixed with some OJ.
Where To Stay
I stayed for three nights at the Kelebek Cave Hotel. As the name implies my room was carved into a cave. I think that counts as unique. The hotel stood high providing excellent views of Goreme. The breakfast was outstanding, with more food and variety then you could handle. I also appreciated the complimentary sweet tea delivered in the prerequisite glass. Other bonuses included good internet and a friendly and efficient staff.
Sweet tea and the view from the hotel
The awesome breakfast
How To Get There
Travel within Turkey is quite straight forward and economical. Buses criss-cross the nation and the several airlines will bring you nearly everywhere. I took an overnight bus from Pamukkale to Cappadocia. It was approximately $15 and 8 hours. Leaving Cappadocia, I flew back to Istanbul for around $70 one way.
And check out my hot air balloon experience in Bagan, Myanmar.
Cappadocia Hot Air Balloon.
Disclosure: I was an invited guest of Balloon Butterfly and Kelebek Cave Hotel. These are my true opinions.