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(Paul Miles 29 Dec 2007)

Living with sheep and satellite TV ( And stay in luxury Gamirasu Cave Hotel )

For more than 4,000 years the people of Cappadocia, central Turkey, have lived in caves. The soft volcanic tufa was first excavated by the Hattis, who made homes in cliffs and phallic columns of rock called fairy chimneys. But, over the millennia, a number of different ethnic and religious groups have followed suit. Chipping away at the porous, pale solidified lava with bronze tools, they have carved out storage areas, animal mangers, niches for oil lamps, chambers for pressing grapes, tandoor ovens and sunken work areas for weavers. Although many of the cave houses are no longer homes – the government has pushed to move residents into modern apartments and some are now being turned into characterful boutique hotels – some traditional residences can still be found.

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