Lava Houses
Robert "Danny" Ricketts and the Camel Man at the Lava Houses
About one hundred miles southeast of Ankara, Turkey's capital city, a strange landscape has formed from
eroded volcanic lava.  At some remote period of time, Mount Erciyes (13,000 feet), which lies east of the
area, erupted and covered the ground with a thick layer of ash.  After the ash hardened, wind and rain
carved out tall chimney-like formations.  The cave cities are within the triangle between the modern cities
of Nevsehir, Nigde and Kayseri.
Houses were carved from the pumice of an ancient volcano
More than a thousand years before the birth of Christ, Hittites carved out houses and entire villages within
these formations.  Following the Hittites, many other peoples lived in these cave-like dwellings.  Control of
the area shifted many times with Assyrians, Medes, Persians, Goths, Romans, Byzantines, and others
ruling over Cappadocia.
Town of Urgup, Turkey in the Cappadocia region
Mount Erciyes is a dormant volcano (13,000 feet)