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Trekking in the Ihlara Valley

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During the trekking which should start at the Ihlara Village  one gets to see the rock-carved chambers and churches on both sides of the valley as one proceeds along the bends of the river. Until the point where the stairs at the entrance to the valley start one should keep to the left strand.

 The church one arrives at here is the Kemer Church on the right of the valley, which is followed by Egritas Church. Egritas Church has single row and rectangular plan. There is a seperate chamber connected to the burial rooms to the West of the suspension vaulted structure. It was stated on the inscription on the eastern Wall of the church, that the church one of the oldest of valley, was dedicated to Mother Mary. The depictions on the frescos include Jesus Christ enthroned between two angels, Annunciation, Visitation, Nativity, dream of Joseph, Flight into Egypt, Baptism, and Arrival in Jaruselam an deven though they are seriously worn, their vivid colors are still attarctive.

As one proceeds in the valley, two more churches are seen. The first one of these is Kokar Church has one floor and a cross-shaped plan. The depictions on the froscoes dated to late 9th and late 11th centuries, are rich in number. The frescoes which depict The Last Supper, Crucifixion, Entombment, Ascension and the Apostles in thematic unity are especially interesting. The decorations in the two burial chambers of the church are among the first examples of the use of red dye.

One of the Cappadocia Churches
One of the Cappadocia Churches

After Kokar Church in the valley, there is Pürenliseki Church. Pürenliseki Church consists of four rock-carved chambers. There are graves on the nartex floor. The frescoes here are dated to early 10th and 12th centuries. Major scenes from the childhood of Jesus Christ and from the Bible such as the Prophecy, Mary and priests, Annunciation, Visitation, the Shepherds are depicted.

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