History can never stop to amaze us and we are still finding out new things, new cities that thrived many centuries ago. These ancient civilizations show us many spectacular things we have been able as human race to create before thousands of years.
Visiting an ancient place that is open for public always incites feelings of how human history is rich with various civilizations and although for us they are ancient they still had their own history and way of life, their knowledge and values.
There are plenty of ancient cities around the planet and we have discovered many of them, but there are still more to search for. The latest that has been discovered is in the Cappadocia region, located near the Nevşehir fortress, and it is considered to be the largest in the world. Nevşehir and the surrounding Cappadocia region are well known for the existence of underground cities and villages, and many of them have been discovered and open for the public eye.
This giant underground city according to experts dates back as far as 5,000 years. Many experts believe that these underground cities have been built as safe places in times of danger and war.
This underground ancient city was discovered when construction workers demolished 1,500 buildings for the purposes of an urban renewal project. This area was a part of their project, but when they saw what they have found the construction works have stopped and the excavation process began.
The excavation is still not complete, and the exact size of the underground city is still not determined, but the results of a comprehensive survey, involving a 4-kilometer area, carried out by a team of Nevşehir University geophysicists reveal that this city is about five million square feet (460,000 square meters), and 113 meters deep. This discovery indicates that this is probably the largest underground city in the world.
The city is enormous in size revealing amenities like chapels, wineries, staircases, kitchens, cellars, stables, bezirhane, and even linseed presses that had been used for the lamp oil production in order to light up the underground city. Plus, scholars maintain that this giant underground city used to be a big, self-sustaining complex with many air shafts and water channels. In times of danger, the Cappadocians would retreat underground and then the large stone doors would be closed from the inside, and each floor closed off separately.
One of the experts who took part in the excavation of the site was Özcan Çakır, a professor in the Geophysics Engineering department at Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University near Gallipoli, who maintains that this city was used as a storage and transportation space for food and produce. He stated:
“We believe that people who were engaged in agriculture were using the tunnels to carry agricultural products to the city. We also estimate that one of the tunnels passes under Nevşehir and reaches a faraway water source.”
According to the estimation of the experts this city could have been built in the 8th to 7th centuries B.C., and then became bigger in the Byzantine era, used as a refugee settlement during the Persian Achaemenid Empire. Some experts believe that it might have been even built by Persians.
The greatest mystery about this site is how people 5, 000 years age have managed to build such huge underground city.
Hasan Ünver, the Nevşehir mayor states that “this new discovery will be added as a new pearl, a new diamond, a new goldto Cappadocia’s riches”. He plans to make this excavation site attractive to the public by building the world’s largest antique park with boutique hotels and art galleries above ground. There will be walking trails and a museum underground for the visitors to see every aspect of this site.
“We even plan to reopen the underground churches. All of this makes us very excited.”
Check the video below and see this amazing underground area with its caves: