Insider’s Guide to Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia [2024 Edition]

Uchisar Castle is a magnificent ancient site located in Cappadocia, Turkey. Standing at the highest point of the region, the castle offers an excellent view of the nearby landscape and has been standing for centuries as a testament to its resilience.

The castle itself features remarkable architecture that is unique to the area, with intricate details carved into stone walls and cleverly designed lookout towers providing stunning views from above. Its cultural importance is undeniable; not only does Uchisar Castle attract thousands of visitors every year, but it has also become an important symbol of Turkish culture and a popular spot for photographers looking for beautiful scenes to capture on camera.

For those planning a trip to Cappadocia or just interested in learning more about this unique historical site, here are some valuable tips for visiting Uchisar Castle in Turkey.

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History of Uchisar Castle

Uchisar Castle is an ancient fortification located in the city of Uchisar, Cappadocia, Turkey. Built by Byzantine settlers in the 4th century AD, it has long been a popular tourist attraction due to its stunning views and unique architecture. The castle is 60 meters high and 9000 square meters wide, overlooking the surrounding area, and serves as one of the most prominent landmarks in Cappadocia.

The history of Uchisar Castle dates back centuries before its construction began. Roman historian Ammianus first mentioned it Marcellinus, around 400 CE when he, wrote about “a royal citadel” at Uchisar which was on top of a mountain peak during his time there. In later centuries, it served as an important defensive structure for Ottoman troops who used it to ward off attacks from rival forces such as those led by Timur Lenk (Tamerlane). Much of what we know about the castle during this period was recorded, including details regarding its layout and design elements like towers and walls that were added over time.

Architecture & Design of Uchisar Castle

The architecture of Uchisar Castle is as impressive as its history. The castle was dug out of the natural landscape of soft volcanic tuff. It consists of multiple layers of walls and towers that form a maze-like structure, protecting from both attackers and the elements.

Uchisar Castle Prominent Features

The castle features several underground tunnels used to store weapons and supplies during times of siege. On top of the hill stands one large central tower with magnificent 360 views of the entire region of Cappadocia. This unique design has made Uchisar Castle one of the most photographed landmarks in Cappadocia.

Tips to Visit Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia

Uchisar Castle provides stunning views of the surrounding area, and its unique architecture and rich history make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the culture and sights of the Cappadocia region. To get the most out of your visit to Uchisar Castle, there are several tips you should keep in mind before embarking on your journey. Here are some key points to remember when planning your trip to this incredible castle.

Hour & Entrance Fee

The hours of Uchisar Castle are 7 am โ€“ 8 pm, perfect for watching the sunset from the top of the castle. There is an entrance fee for Uchisar Castle, and note that you cannot use the Turkey Museum Pass to enter the site.

Parking at Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia

There are a small number of parking spaces close to the entrance of the castle. Otherwise, you can park on the street or in a paid parking lot down the road from the entrance. The parking fee is 30-40 Turkish Lira paid to the parking attendant.

How Much Time is Needed at Uchisar Castle?

You can easily visit Uchisar Castle in 30 minutes to an hour. You can explore the inside of the castle, then take the 275 steps up to the top of the castle to see the panoramic views of Cappadocia.

When is the Best Time to Go to Uchisar Castle?

The best time to go to Uchisar Castle is at sunset for spectacular views of Goreme, Red Valley, Rose Valley, Love Valley, and Pigeon Valley. The colors of the rocky valleys during the golden hour right before the sunsets are beautiful.

Visting Uchisar Castle with Kids

Uchisar Castle is a wonderful site to visit with kids to learn about the region’s history and have some freedom to explore.

Once you’re making your way up the steps to the top of the castle, be aware there are areas you can get off the path and walk around. If you have small children, you’ll want to keep them close because there are holes going from one level to another within the castle. Most of them are blocked off, but keeping your eyes on the kids is best.

How to Get to Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia

Uchisar Castle is in the town of Uchisar in Cappadocia, Turkey. There are many villages, towns, and cities near Uchisar, making it easy and quick to get to. Below are some of the most popular towns in Cappadocia near Uchisar Castle.

From Goreme

From Goreme, it’s a quick 5-10 minutes (5 km) trip along Adnan Menderes Caddesi which changes to Goreme-Uchisar Yolu. You can park along the street or in a paid parking area, then walk up to the castle.

From Urgup

From the town of Urgup, the trip to Uchisar Castle is about 15 minutes (13.6km). You’ll take the Nevsehir Urgup Yolu / D302, exit, and take the Adnan Menderes Caddesi to Uchisar.

Transportation to Uchisar Castle

We recommend renting a car while youโ€™re in Cappadocia, to explore on your own the ultimate about of flexibility. You can rent a car for the day, or extend your rent for the entirety of your trip. If youโ€™re traveling with kids, we believe renting a car is the best way to travel in Cappadocia.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Rent a Car in Cappadocia

Tours That Include Uchisar Castle

There are several ways to tour Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia, Turkey. Take a small group tour or plan a private day tour of the region during your trip to Turkey.

Red Tour (North Cappadocia)

Experience the best of Cappadocia’s Northern region with a Red Tour. This small-group day tour takes you to six popular destinations along the ‘Red Route’, including Love Valley, Monk Valley, Imagination Valley, Goreme Open-Air Museum (a UNESCO World Heritage site), Avanos, and Uchisar Castle. The Red Tour is a full day tour with lunch included โ€“ a great option to save money traveling in Cappadocia.  

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Book the Red Tour in Cappadocia

Private Cappadocia Tours

Discover the captivating history of Cappadocia as you visit landmarks like Uchisar Castle, Red Valley, and Goreme National Park with your private guide and driver. Admire the beautiful rock formations and fairy chimney valleys the region is known for. With a private tour, you can enjoy a tailored itinerary that suits your interests and needs, providing more flexibility during your visit.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Request a Private Cappadocia Tour Itinerary & Pricing

visit uchisar castle

Is Uchisar Castle Worth It?

Yes, Uchisar Castle is a must-visit for anyone looking to experience Cappadocia, Turkey’s rich history and culture. With its iconic hilltop location and fantastic views of the unique rock formations and volcanic tuff, this ancient fortress provides stunning views from its many towers and walls. It also boasts an impressive array of tunnels and chambers that allow visitors to explore another side of Uchisar Castle’s long history. With recent renovations providing more accessibility to visitors, Uchisar Castle is well worth a visit in Cappadocia.

hot air balloons over uchisar castle

Best Things to Do Near Uchisar, Turkey

In addition to Uchisar Castle, there are many there are plenty of other sights to explore nearby. From ancient churches and underground cities to hot-air balloon rides and fairy chimneys, there’s something for everyone near Uchisar Castle.

Next, weโ€™ll look at the best things to see near Uchisar, Turkey.

โœ…  Hike Love Valley to Uchisar Castle

Hiking from Love Valley to Uchisar Castle is popular among visitors to Cappadocia, Turkey. The journey takes you through the stunning landscape of this region and offers an opportunity to experience its unique culture and history. The path begins in Love Valley, known for its breathtaking views of fairy chimneys and rock-cut houses. From there, hikers will ascend the slopes of Uchisar Hill before reaching the top, where they can explore the ancient fortress of Uchisar Castle. Along the way, travelers will be treated to spectacular scenery and some interesting cultural sites, including underground cities and monasteries that date back centuries.

โœ…  Sunrise Hot Air Balloons

Sunrise hot air balloon rides in Cappadocia, Turkey, are an unforgettable experience. Floating silently over this ancient region’s fairy chimneys and rock-cut houses is a truly magical experience that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime. From churches carved into the rocks to underground cities hidden beneath the surface, there are plenty of fascinating sites to discover while soaring through the sky.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Book a Sunrise Hot Air Balloon Ride

kaymakli underground city

โœ…  Visit Kaymakli Underground City

Kaymakli underground city is an ancient site located near Kaymakli in Cappadocia, Turkey. The city comprises several levels of tunnels and chambers that stored food, weapons, and other supplies needed for survival.

โœ…  Stay in a Cave Hotel

For a truly unique experience, staying in a cave hotel in Uchisar is the perfect choice. Located in the heart of Turkey’s stunning landscape, these cave hotels allow visitors to explore the local sites while enjoying the comfort and luxury of modern amenities. From traditional cave dwellings to rooms cut into cliffsides, the accommodations near Uchisar Castle provide guests with breathtaking views of Cappadocia and the famous sunrise hot air balloons.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Book a Cave Hotel in Uchisar

โœ…  Eat at a Cave Restaurant & Folk Dancing Show

If you’re looking for an unforgettable experience in Cappadocia, Turkey, dining at a cave restaurant is the perfect choice. Not only will you get to enjoy a delicious dinner of traditional Turkish food, but you’ll also be treated to an entertaining show featuring folk and belly dancing performances. The unique atmosphere is ideal for special occasions or an evening out with friends.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Book a Folk Dance & Dinner Show

ATV Tour Cappadocia

โœ…  Sunset ATV Tour

Taking off on a quad tour in the valleys of Cappadocia in Turkey is an epic adventure at sunset. The colors of the sunset against the red rocks of the valleys and fairy chimneys make for magnificent views. Highly recommend!

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click Here to Book a Sunset ATV Tour

cave hotels in uchisar

Where to Stay Near Uchisar Castle

๐Ÿ“ Museum Hotel

The Museum Hotel in Uchisar, Cappadocia, has been renovated from ruins, caves, and ancient houses. The rooms and suites have antique furnishings, minibars, flat-screen TVs, whirlpool tubs, Wi-Fi, and tea and coffee-making facilities. Certain rooms have unique features like stone walls, wine taps, fireplaces, and ornamental pools. Some rooms also come with private gardens and spa areas.

๐Ÿ“ Kale Konak Cave Hotel

Experience an unforgettable stay in Cappadocia at the Kale Konak Cave Hotel, where you can enjoy Wi-Fi, air conditioning, breakfast, airport shuttle service, and stunning views of hot air balloons from your room.

views from uchisar castle

FAQs: Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia, Turkey

How tall is Uchisar Castle?

Uchisar Castle stands at an impressive height of approximately 60 meters (196 feet). It is the highest point in Cappadocia, Turkey, and is visible from many miles making it an iconic part of the Cappadocia landscape. The castle was built into the hillside, offering sweeping views of the region and providing visitors with an unforgettable experience.

How old is Uchisar Castle?

Uchisar Castle is believed to have been dug into the soft volcanic rock by Byzantine settlers around 800 AD and has since been a symbol of Cappadocia and Turkish culture. It has also undergone some renovations as part of a project to restore it to its former glory in recent years.

Can you walk from Goreme to Uchisar?

Yes, you can walk from Goreme to Uchisar. The route is known as the Pigeon Valley hiking trail and typically takes 1-1.5 hours to complete. Along the way, you will witness breathtaking views of the Cappadocia valleys, fairy chimneys, and other impressive rock formations. It’s a great way to explore the valley when you have limited time.

What Cappadocia tours go to Uchisar Castle?

Take part in a small-group Red Tour of North Cappadocia to visit Uchisar Castle. You’ll have the opportunity to visit six of the most well-known destinations and see views of the fairy chimneys in Love Valley and Monk Valley. Additionally, you’ll visit Imagination Valley, explore the Goreme Open-Air Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and make pottery in the town of Avanos.

uchisar castle cappadocia turkey

Conclusion: Uchisar Castle in Cappadocia

Finally, Uchisar Castle is a stunning and iconic destination in Cappadocia, Turkey. Whether you’re looking for adventure or want to take in some incredible views, Uchisar Castle offers visitors an opportunity to explore its fascinating past while enjoying the beauty of this unique region.

From hiking trails with breathtaking views to exploring ancient underground cities, this Cappadocia will surely be a highlight of your trip. Take part in a small-group tour, book a room at a cave hotel, or take a hot air balloon ride for unrivaled area views.

Some links on this page are affiliate linksโ€”that means that at no extra cost to you, we earn a small commission if you book through these links, and that helps keep this blog running.