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Bucket List Time! I finally made it to Turkey, where 2 of my most anticipated destinations lay Cappadocia and Istanbul. Cappadocia, home to the most beautiful hot air balloon journeys on the planet, came first and I could hardly contain my excitement.


Sometimes when you backpack you need to watch every penny, whereas other times you need to go that extra distance to ensure your dream destination lived up to everything you had hoped. Cappadocia falls into that category for me. A hot air balloon ride runs around 150-200 Euro but to complete the bucket list stay you gotta stay in a cave hotel in Cappadocia. Step forward the Castle Inn.

Cave hotels can run you up some pretty heavy bills but the Castle Inn is the best valued cave hotel in the region. It’s located in a gorgeous little town called Ortahisar, about 5km from Goreme the main town in the area. The hotel is co-owned by the charismatic Suat, a hot air balloon pilot and all round nice guy. He’s super knowledgable about Cappadocia, can sort out all your tours in the region and even help you plan your next few steps in Turkey. Also, if you book the hot air balloon ride with him he’ll try to organize being the pilot of your balloon which almost guarantees you the best balloon ride of your life, the man is a hot air balloon ninja (I went with him!).

Anyways, the hotel. I uploaded the pic below onto my facebook fan page and boy did you guys love it! 400 likes within an hour or so, my inbox was inundated with questions about prices, locations etc (hence this article).

johnny ward john ward thailand
With Suat the legend

The hotel is only has 6 rooms, and the place feels like a home more than a hotel. No room numbers on the door, the staff come and sit in your room and chat over coffee – it’s a pretty cool vibe, and right up my street. If you have generic chain hotels, then the Castle Inn is for you and what’s even better is that it’s so reasonably priced. I think people who saw the pic on facebook thought it cost me a fortune, but the rooms start at $40 – crazy!

I had such a good time here, I’m definitely keen to come back. If you’re in Cappadocia guys, be sure to swing by. Happy travels!

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