Uchisar Castle is the highest peak in Cappadocia region except the volcanoes and the most prominent land formation. A climb up the 120 steps to the summit of the fortress is a logical introduction to the rocky scapes of Cappadocia. Starting from the 1st century, Romans, Byzantines, Selcuks and Ottomans took advantage of the natural elevation of three of the area’s rock formations and used them as natural fortresses.
Uchisar, together with Ortahisar and a rock castle at Urgup (now in ruins), provided the means for an early warning system using mirrors and lights, sending messages among the fortresses. Today the outer layers of Uchisar’s rock have been washed away by erosion to reveal a honeycombed structure of tunnels and cavities, rising above the man-made facades of the modern semi-troglodyte village. Recently discovered was a secret tunnel leading to the riverbed, which provided an emergency water supply in the event of an attack.