festivals in Cappadocia
Located in Türkiye's Central Anatolian region, Cappadocia has been home to many ancient civilizations over the centuries. Cappadocia is famous for its unusual landscape which is the result of the erosion of lava from ancient volcanoes dating back to between 9 and 3 million years ago. The enchanting and mysterious atmosphere created by the unique geology, and the historical and cultural features like the fairy chimneys and the underground cities have made Cappadocia a popular tourist destination in Türkiye. Many festivals, concerts, and art performances take place in the charming atmosphere of Cappadocia.
Cappadox, Türkiye's first destination festival, is a multidisciplinary cultural festival including music, contemporary art, gastronomy, and outdoor disciplines. It welcomes many Turkish and international artists on the natural plateau that is formed behind the fairy-tale landscape of Cappadocia. Visitors can enjoy various musical performances from jazz to classical music, exhibitions organized with a different theme each year, and other arts & culture events at Cappadox. At the same time, while in Cappadocia, visitors have the opportunity to taste the delicious dishes of Central Anatolia.
This special region regularly hosts world-renowned Turkish and international artists and music groups around fairy chimneys and valleys in Cappadocia, and provides an unforgettable experience for music-loving audiences.
The Cappadocia Tent Festival, which takes place in June, and the Balloon Fest Cappadocia, an international hot-air balloon festival that takes place in July, create colorful images in the region. Balloon Fest Cappadocia is hosted by the Ürgüp Municipality and participated by hot-air balloon pilots from various countries. The audience witnesses the spectacular hot-air balloons fill the sky accompanied by music.
The International Cappadocia World Dance Festival, held in Avanos, brings dancers from different countries together, and offers the opportunity to get to know and watch the local dances of different cultures.
At the International Cappadocia Photo Contest organized by Nevşehir Municipality, with the cooperation of the International Federation of Photographic Art (FIAP) and the Photographic Arts Federation of Türkiye (TFSF), photographs by many international photographers compete. Following the competition, the photographs picked by the jury are presented to the art lovers at an exhibition.
Gastronomy Experiences in Cappadocia
The region of Cappadocia is believed to have a very long history of winemaking dating back to the Hittites. It is famous for its grape cultivation and vineyards as well as its award-winning wines. There are many wine-tasting shops in the area and festivals where visitors can taste the local products.
The Ürgüp Grape Harvest Festival, organized in September, promise wine and gastronomy enthusiasts coming to the region a wonderful experience. Kicking off with a festival parade, the Ürgüp Grape Harvest Festival continues with local folk dances and magnificent light shows and concerts at night. “The Best Grape of the Year Competition” is among the most popular events. Thanks to the competition, visitors can taste the freshest grapes from the local vineyards. Visitors who wish to take part in the grape harvest, can pick the grapes directly off the vines.
Cappadocia’s gastronomy festivals offer a wonderful opportunity to get to know the rich cuisine and products of Central Anatolia, and a chance to taste mouthwatering local delicacies.
The Traditional Kaymak Festival, held in the town of Kaymaklı in August, aims to introduce this very special and delicious product to all visitors - kaymak is a creamy, rich dairy product that resembles clotted cream. There is a contest for the best kaymak and folk-dance performances attract interest at the festival.
Traditional Festivals in Cappadocia
Cappadocia’s traditional festivals offer the opportunity to get to know the culture of Central Anatolia and experience the region’s legendary history. These local festivities and arts & culture festivals are primarily held in the spring and summer.
The Hacı Bektaş Veli Commemoration Ceremonies Culture and Art Festival (Hacı Bektaş Veli Anma Törenleri ve Kültür Sanat Etkinlikleri) hosts many local and international guests every August, and is one of the most popular events promoting the region’s culture. The festival showcases Anatolian traditions that attract great interest from visitors.
The Salcano Cappadocia Cycling Festival, one of the longest-running competitions in Cappadocia, takes place in September and brings together amateur and professional cyclists from different countries of the world. The Salomon Cappadocia Ultra-Trail, which is among the 28 races of the Ultra Trail World Tour series, the Champions League of trail running, takes place in October and offers runners a unique experience in the breathtaking atmosphere of the hills and valleys of Cappadocia.