19th century Cappadocian houses were built on hill sides, either carved out
of the rock or built from large cut stones. Volcanic stone is the only
architectural material in the region used for building ; it is soft when
extracted and can therefore easily be cut and shaped. It hardens
on contact with air to form a very resistant material. The abundance of
stone in the area, and the ease of use have created a building technique
unique to the area.
is used for courtyard gates and the houses' doors. Rosette and ivy patterns
are used as decorations above the arched doors.
areas between floors are decorated in up to three rows of rosettes, fans,
stars, palmet, weather vanes and stylized plant patterns.
Windows are grouped in twos and threes and stylized plant patterns are also used
as decorative borders. Two types of windows are used, either two
panes opening separately or guillotine style.
both types of houses there are numerous living rooms, a kitchen, cellar,
store room, an oven (tandir), wine vat etc. Niches found in the guest
rooms are decorated with paintings of vases full of flowers under silk,
tasselled curtains, scenes from nature or women filling, or carrying water
vessels. These scenes are painted on plaster.
The most interesting examples of local architecture belong to the end of the
19th and beginning of the 20th centuries. Examples can be found all
over the region, but particularly in Ürgüp, Ortahisar,
Mustafapasa, Bashisar, Goreme, Avanos, and in Guzeloz and nearby Baskoy
in the province of Kayseri and in Guzelyurt in the vicinity of Ihlara Canyon.