There are 34 underground cities in the Cappadocia region, and Derinkuyu is not just one of these-it’s the deepest. Below its surface lies an underground city that reaches sixty meters below the earth’s surface. It features all the classical sections of the other underground cities: wineries, stables, storage areas, cellars, refectories and churches.
Derinkuyu was carved out of a rock formation made up of many layers of compact volcanic ash known as tuff. This easy-to-melt, porous, and fragile rock explains how ancient people were able to cut the underground city deeply with simple instruments like a pick and shovel.
The city was started to be built by Early Christians in the first years of Christianity to protect themselves from the cruel persecution of the Roman Soldiers. The only official religion in Romans was the Pagan Religion until 4th century and the people who do not believe in that was brutally persecuted by the soldiers.
The Christians of Cappadocia found the solution of living underground when they realized soldiers were rounding up people for attacking their village. Derinkuyu Underground City is an elaborate maze made from tunnels, caves and one can easily get lost here as it is a huge complex.
Derinkuyu Underground City has been listed as a part of UNESCO World Heritage List in 1985. The city has been opened to the visitors since 1965. The city has a unique room in the second level used as a religious school during enemy times and peace time. A 100-meter-long tunnel of leads from the third to seventh levels where there is a cross-shaped church, cemetery, water well and at the bottom of ventilation shaft. The underground city has a total of 8 levels although not all are excavated. This would have accommodated between 5000 to 8000 people at a time for up to one month.
Derinkuyu Underground City is 40 km far from Goreme center, 50 km far from Urgup town and 55km far from Avanos town. If you would like to visit this place on your own, you can use public buses departing from Goreme bus station. Firstly, you need to reach up to Nevsehir city center and change the bus for Derinkuyu town. It will take over 1 hour to get to the underground city by public buses. It will be same for the guest who are staying in Urgup , Avanos or Uchisar hotels, they need to arrive at Nevsehir city center then they need to catch another bus for the underground city. There is an entrance fee of 60 Turkish Lira per person for the underground city. The GPS Coordinates of the city is 38°22’22.7″N 34°44’01.5″E.