Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa

Location: 

GPS coordinates: 38.577029, 34.895390
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa

Description: 

There are three rock churches in the valley that is situated to the south of Mustafapaşa centre. The most impressive of them is the church and the monastery of St. Nicholas. Along with the other two churches - St. Stephen and Sinasos - it forms Monastery Valley Open Air Museum (tr. Manastır Vadisi Açık Hava Müzesi). It is worth mentioning that there are 14 churches dedicated to St. Nicholas in Cappadocia.

Visitors to the monastery complex are welcomed by a massive stone gate in the wall surrounding the buildings. It was erected shortly after 1856 when the edict of Hatt-ı Humayun was announced. It guaranteed the equality before the law for all citizens of the Ottoman Empire, regardless of their religion. It also allowed the freedom to make renovations and repairs in buildings designed for the purpose of religious worship. This edict caused a flourishing of religious architecture in many communities throughout the Empire.

Another renovation of the monastery was completed in 2012. The builders were able to restore the original appearance of the portico by using the photographs taken at the beginning of the twentieth century. What is unusual in Cappadocia, the outer wall of the sanctuary is now decorated with icons brought in from Greece.

In the courtyard of the complex, there is a small cemetery, also renovated as part of the recent reconstruction project. Above the church rises the building of a pigeon house where it is possible to climb the ladder. The views from this place will please the eyes of every lover of the Cappadocian landscape.

Getting there: 

Follow the brown signposts to the south from the centre of Mustafapaşa. The road is now of good quality after the renovation of 2012. The monastery of St. Nicholas can be reached by car or by walking. The distance from the town centre is just 1 km, and there are many fascinating rock formations and so-called fairy chimneys, characteristic of Cappadocia, along the way.

Bibliography: 

Image gallery: 

Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa
Church and Monastery of St Nicholas in Mustafapaşa