Hi there: Just back from an amazing 2 week trip to Turkey which included 4 days in Cappadocia. I have to say that for me, Cappadocia was the highlight of my trip. There is noplace like this and it's a great place to see local life and traditional people. I get the sad feeling it won't be this way for long so don't miss it. Here are a few thoughts/suggestions:
* we stayed at the Kelebek hotel in Goreme which was absolutely incredible. Beautiful rooms, the views are incredible, staff very helpful and accomodating and food good.
* After driving thru Urgup as well I felt Goreme was more striking of a town and also felt slightly less overwhelmingly touristy (they had a Dockers store in Urgup!). Of the two I'm glad we stayed in goreme.
* It is really important not to take photos of the villagers without asking their permission. Some are more than happy to have their photo taken but some will get very upset if you take a photo.
* One of my favorite experiences was just walking around the small roads in Goreme where the daily life was happening. We saw kids playing, women cooking grape syrup outside, men stomping grapes. It was a truly unforgettable experience.
* yes, the hot air balloon ride is worth it. I recommend one hour (versus longer) both for the $$ and just that it's enough. I really recommend Kappadokya Balloons. There are lots of companies but not all use licensed pilots or quality balloons. Kappadokya has been around for 16 years and are universally recommended.
* Open Air Museum in Goreme is great. We went to Kaymakli Underground City which was interesting but you go thru pretty quickly. Derinkuyu is supposed to be deeper but we didn't get there. It's pretty intense going intot he small corridors and not for the claustrophobic.
* We hired a local guy to drive us around for a 1/2 day which cost us 40 YTL. He took us hiking in the rose valley (incredible!), to many small but amazing rock formations, to Avanos and Ushisar. This was a cost effective and great way to see some unusual sites.