Fairy chimneys and cave dwellings in Uçhisar, Cappadocia, Turkey
© Ivan Kmit/Alam
And to think that I saw it in Cappadocia
The fantastical 'fairy chimneys' found in central Turkey's historic Cappadocia region were formed by a collision of the natural and the man-made. The landforms were created when volcanoes deposited mounds of soft, porous rock called tuff, which was later covered with hard basalt. In the 10th century (though possibly starting up to 5,000 years ago) humans excavated the tuff to create caves and catacombs that could fit thousands of dwellers. Through not only the astonishing ruins but the many 'cave hotels' hewn into rock in the city of Göreme, the memory of those ingenious city planners lives on.