Thursday, 15 January 2015

Mega 5,000-year-old underground city discovered in Cappadocia


By Boulent Mustafa

An ancient underground city, believed to be the largest in the world, has been discovered in central Turkey. The subterranean settlement was discovered in Cappadocia, Nevşehir – an area popular with tourists.

Cappadocia is internationally renowned for its stunning, lunar-like landscape, beneath which are a large number of underground settlements. This latest discovery is by far the biggest city of its kind, creating considerable excitement amongst the archaeological community.

The first signs of the new settlement were spotted last year, but it was only during work for a new housing development that its full extent became apparent, with tunnels some 7 km long found.

Mehmet Ergün Turan, the head of Turkey’s Housing Development Administration (TOKİ), told Turkish media that although they had spent some 90 million TL (£25 million) on the housing project, all work had now ceased, and that they do not view the investment as a loss given the huge cultural significance of the discovery.

The area is now registered with the Cultural and Natural Heritage Preservation Board, which will prevent any further work from taking place.

Previously Derinkuyu, also in Nevşehir, about an hour’s drive from the new site, was the district’s biggest underground settlement. The multi-level city, said to date back to 8th century BC, was large enough to house an estimated twenty thousand people and their livestock.


Get Away to Cappadocia, 22 Jan. 2014

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