The narrative sounds as though it were taken directly from an Indiana Jones movie.
When remodeling his home in 1963, a guy from Turkey’s Nevşehir Province tore down a few walls and was horrified to discover what was hidden there.
He came across a weird, dark area that, as he soon learned, connected to a complex network of tunnels that led to further, cavernous rooms.
They came onto a massive underground metropolis without knowing it, and what they found was just amazing!
Derinkuyu, a name that roughly translates to ‘deep well,’ is the name of the city.
The term is well-deserved because, although neither being the largest nor the oldest network of underground tunnels, this one is the deepest at 18 levels.
It was thought that the underground city was constructed between 780 and 1180 AD, during the Byzantine period.
This extensive network was probably utilized as a bunker to safeguard the locals during times of conflict and to protect them from natural calamities.
It is estimated that the system of tunnels is large enough to house and shelter up to 20,000 people, along with their animals and food supplies.
One of several underground complexes unearthed across Cappadocia, it is by far the largest underground city in Turkey to have been excavated.
The Byzantine period, which lasted from 780 to 1180 AD, is thought to have been when the city was founded.
The city’s layout and security measures were so intricate that it had stone doors that could be locked from the inside to keep adversaries out of the tunnels.
In case the adversary could somehow get past the stone doors, each floor is sealed off separately.
Similar amenities can be found in many of the underground networks in these areas, and Derinkuyu is no exception.
Wine and oil presses, stables, cellars, storage spaces, refectories, and churches were found by experts.There are several underground complexes in Cappadocia, and this is just one of them.
The presence of a massive complex with a roomy area and a barrel vaulted ceiling on the second floor made this particular site special.
According to archaeologists, the rooms on that floor were left empty so that students might complete their studies while this space was utilized solely as a religious school.
The inhabitants of the area appeared to have exploited a big ventilation shaft of 55 meters to collect water for everyday consumption.
It was thought that they had access to fresh running water that was not connected to the surface for safety reasons to prevent intrusions from above-ground contaminating their water source.
Wine and oil presses, stables, cellars, storage spaces, refectories, and churches were found by experts.
In the underground city, only about half of the historic passages are accessible. However, it is thought that they are linked to other underground settlements by tunnels that can go for long distances.
The underground city was first made accessible to tourists in 1969, and it is still open today for anyone who wants to take in the amazing architecture.