Turkey: Cappadocia – Eski Gumusler Cave Monastery

An absolutely stunning attraction near Nigde is the Eski Gumusler Cave Monastery. The monastery is a Byzantine-era cave church and is carved out of a square hole in the rock plateau and has a whole cave labyrinth of passageways and secret rooms. The frescoes here date from the 7th to 11th centuries and are absolutely surreal in the size and quality, depicting various biblical scenes, including the Annunciation and the Virgin Mary with baby Jesus flanked by the Archangels Gabriel and Michael. It is one of the largest and best preserved (and restored) cave monasteries in Cappadocia. The monastery was only rediscovered in 1962. It’s quite off the tourist path so you may as well have the entire complex to yourself.