Cappadocia is a volcanic province located in the center of the Turkey, in the triangle of Urgup, Nevsehir and Avanos (map). Erciyes, Melendiz and Hasandag volcanoes deposited a soft tuff layer, 150 – 200 m in thickness to this and adjoining areas that was intensely eroded by rain and wind. A unique landscape with canyons, hills and fairy chimneys, Cappadocia is inhabited since the beginning of civilization. Due to the scarcity of stone, people could not built houses thus they started digging underground houses. The oldest traces are the prehistoric settlements of Kosk Hoyuk, Asikli Hoyuk and Civelek Cave, which are dated up to eleven thousand years. Due to this way of life, the Cimmerians who were living there in the Antiquity were called “People of the Night”. This antique tradition of underground digging is still active and, modern hotels, houses or even museums are dug nowadays. In addition to this living style, this area with its unusual topographic characteristics was also regarded as sacred and called, in the Scythian/Khatti language, as Khepatukha, meaning “the country of the people of the chief god Hepat”, although there are more poetic claims on the origin of the region’s name, such as the Old Persian Katpatuka, which allegedly means “the land of beautiful horses”. Following the Late Hittite and Persian era, the Cappadocian Kingdom was established in 332 B.C. During the Roman period the area served as a shelter for Christians and numerous underground cities has early Christians churches.
With its several underground cultural and historical places to visit, and hundreds of cave hotels in addition to its various activities from ballooning to trekking, horse riding, cycling, Cappadocia is a worldwide known touristic place. It offers to the congress attendants the underground facilities and the underground sites to study and visit during the meeting.