Uçhisar is a troglodyte village situated 4 km east of Göreme. It is famous for the huge rock formation once used as a fortification. This extraordinary rock is the highest peak in the region and offers a magnificent panoramic view of the whole of Cappadocia with Mt. Erciyes in the distance.
Most rooms in the castle are connected to each other with stairs, tunnels and passages. At the entrances of many rooms, there are millstone doors, just like the ones in the underground settlements, used to control access to these places. Due to erosion it is unfortunately not possible to reach all the rooms. Most of the rooms, located on the north side of the castle are still in use as pigeon houses (dovecotes) today. Farmers used these pigeon houses to collect the droppings of pigeons which is an excellent natural fertilizer for the orchards and vineyards. A secret tunnel from the castle to the river bed 100 m below, hewn out in order to provide the water supply in the event of siege, has been recently discovered.
There are also many pigeon houses in Pigeon valley (Güvercinlik vadisi in Turkish) which lies between Uçhisar and Göreme. Most of these cave dwellings have been painted white to attract the birds, many of them have also red symbols around the entrance holes.
The fairy chimneys to the west, east and north of Uçhisar were hollowed out and used as graves during the Roman period. Inside these rock-cut tombs, the entrances of which generally face west, are stone slabs on which the bodies were laid.