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> The Pearl of Erciyes Issue: 2008-3 Section: Other


Formation Of Mount Erciyes

Turkey is a fairly rich country in terms of volcanic activity.

One of the most important parts of this richness is undoubtly Mount Erciyes.

Mount Erciyes which is located approximately 20 km away from Kayseri in Middle Anatolic Region and it is located south is a natural richness making it beautiful being a passive volcano at the height of 3916 metres and an area excessing 1100 km2.

Formation of Erciyes came into being in three phases. These phases began approximately 20 million years ago.

Erciyes enhanced as being a three-layer volcano. At Mount Erciyes, presently main volcano cone at the time of eruption of volcanes.

Today’s Cappadocia landscape near Nevsehir - Ürgüp is the result of the natural forces during the intense volcanic activity.

After numerous eruptions, these cones started quiet period. In this period, there were breakings, downfalls and raisings on the ground with the movement. It’s a characteristic of layer volcano that it was formed. Many of volcano coni like Liyos Hill (2509 m), Mount Yilanli (1643 m), Mount Kolenli (2680 m), Mount Yilband (1643 m) are results of these eruptions.

1,5 and 2 million years ago from our age, at the last period of fourth age, as our other high mountains, Mount Erciyes has circus(1) lakes occured at the higher parts. By ending of this age some new volcanic eruptions happened.

The scientists proved that; the volcanic activities at Mount Erciyes continued nearly until 2000 years ago.


Do You Wonder; Wonderful Nature Shapes Occured As A Result Of This Explosion?

Mount Erciyes not only played an important role at the formation of Cappadocia, but also many other volcanes’ eruptions contributed to the formation of the region.

These activies has started 10 million years ago and continued until our age.

The eruptions of all these volcanes caused formation of some lakes, rivers and plateaus which have nearly 100 metre thicked and at different hardness.

The violence of plateau became different constantly with the effect of the materials that were spitted from the volcanos at lower altitudes.

Eroding of these tufa(2) layers by rain waters and wind which is another factor of tufa layers.

Torrent water, which comes down from high slopes with a great speed, cracked hard rocks and caused a separation of rocks by sloping from each other.

Plant covers scarcity and half arid climate and non structure of thick tufa layers is the reason that torrent waters strengthen.

Easy decomposed materials department of these rocks was thimbled deeply by effect of torrent waters on wind in the course of time.

So cone bodies occured with been bazalt hat that was at the tap of the rocks.

In the formation of cappadocia besides rain water which we mention as second power the existence of basalt(3) which has resistance for eroding is important too.

Basalt which is function doing like hat,decreases to eroding and it increases fairy chimney’s life.

Besides wind’s effect also is known in the formation of fairy chimneys.

Therefore rain waters are much more important than wind.

If we are to examine fairy chimneys’ shapes in Cappadocia Region in general, fairy chimneys which have a structure like hat upon, have a body conic. Rock at the tap of parts is found in block shape.

Bodies of them formed with tufa an ashes of volcano and created rock.

Part of hat occured by more hard rocks like ignimbrit and lahar.

It will be understood that part of hat is more powerful than bodies.

If we want to classfy fairy chimneys, we can work out with 3 styles.

The first of them seems like a sharp pencil.

This means that it fully completed its formation.

The second one has some pieces of stone on it and has a conical style and resembles a mushroom.

The third one lies upright and has a sharp hill.


How Much Have These Natural Miracles Connection With Cappadocia Tourism …?

Cappadocia Region has hosted a lot of tourists since the time of its formation. Cappadocia is a touristic city which has lots of historical and culturel places.

In this reagion that churchs and underground cities are the most interesting places.

These places are visited by a lot of tourists. I want to mention about two important places.


Derin Kuyu Underground City

This is the widest and deepest one of all the underground cities in the region it has 83 m depth and 8 floors. There are kitchens, dining holls, borns in underground city and it is different from other cities that it has a missionary school. Another feature of this place is that, there is an airing chimney which is 55 m depth. These chimneys are also use as water wells. When city was surrounded it could not be reached to earths surface in case of poisoning.


Kaymakli Underground City

It is an 8 floors underground city. At first, it was not exactly an underground city. But later it was turned into an underground city by digging up other areas at the time of Rome and Bizantine. Here, there is also stall at entrance as usually being in other underground cities. There are a lot of corridors for passing other churches and living places. Next to them there is a cemetery for leaders of churches. Besides there are some wine stores, kitchens and living rooms at third flour. Today four flours of this underground city is opened for visiters Kaymakli Underground City is the one of the widest and the most populated cities of this region.


Tokali Church

It is biggest rock church of Cappadocia. It has four rooms. The old church, the new one, the church under the old church and the one at the north of new church. Here, you can see icones such as borning, visiting, killing of small children, downward of Christ to tell and icone has seen generally raising of Christ to the sky.

You can also see the icones of miracle of Christ.


The Virgin Mary Church

Following Tokali Church, you can see the Virgin Mary Church it is a very vertical place you can see some saints’ pictures and death of The Virgin Mary and Chris. This church has four scenes of Bible.

Thus, it is very important.


Circus(1): Small holes which occured with effect of glacier, on high mountains;

Tufa(2): Ash of volcano;

Basalt(3): Hard,volcanic rock.



  •, 25.03.2008;
  •, Mephisto Turizm, Türkiye Seyehat Acentalari Birligi;
  • Cetin-Karip,, 08.12.2007;
  •, 24.12.2008;
  •, Avanos belediyesi, 01.10.2006;
  •, 13-02-2008;
  •, 03.10.2008