Open Palace ( Gül?ehir – Aç?k Saray )

Gül?ehir is set on the skirts of Kepez Hill at the side of K?z?l?rmak Çengeli, which is 20 km northwest of Nev?ehir. It's thought that this city was founded by Hittites (II millenium before Christ) by the name of Zoropassos. Then, the name was changed by Greeks to Arabusun.

After Turkish Republic was formed, this place was called Gül?ehir. It's now a 5.000 inhabitants town of Nev?ehir. When you come two kilometers from Gül?ehir towards Nev?ehir, you meet hundreds of early christian hiding places which are carved in the rocks and have half – valley shaped. It's called Aç?ksaray ("Open air palace"). The pictures, dated VI and VII centuries here are quiet damaged yet worth to be seen.

At the same place there's the St. John church and a 200 meters tunnel joining the two valleys. At S???rl?, Gümü?kent, Sivasa and Göstesin villages of Gül?ehir there are some underground towns not open for visit. At Sivasa village there is also a human relief carved on a rock by Hittites, and 300 meters west there is a hierogliphic inscription carved on basalt rock again by Hittites.

This is not all of Sivasa; there is also a Byzantian church on the west of the village, carved on a rock. But the fresks of Jesus, Virgin Mary and other Saints are partially damaged.

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