Encouraged by the fine weather, a carnival atmosphere, music, food, dance and a love of Kayaköy,
thousands of people came to the Kayaköy Festival last Sunday for the valley’s first event of the year.
The organisers told FT that they were delighted by the attendance and the overall success of the day.
Celebrating a natural and beautiful setting
The organisers also believe that the popularity of Kayaköy, as a natural, historic
and beautiful setting, brought out the crowds.
Overall they estimate that between three and four thousand visitors came
along throughout the course of the day and said they had received a great
deal of positive feedback.
Kites a flying success
With promotion mainly through social media and posters,
the event included a kite festival, with children (and adults) making and flying
them in the warm spring breeze above the ruins.
Food stalls and barbecues provided snacks and meals throughout the day,
live music and dancing brought the old town’s square to life;
creating a friendly, fun atmosphere.
In fact, according to some visitors, the event was so popular there
were issues with traffic congestion and parking.
However, the high number of visitors meant that the local businesses
and restaurants enjoyed and benefitted from the brisk trade.
The organisers said that as a result, they hope to make the
festival an annual event.
‘Defending’ or ‘Saving’ Kayaköy
The event was organised by ‘Defend Kayaköy’ with support from ‘Save Kayaköy’, both
well supported groups that came together following concerns about proposals to build a
holiday village on part of the historic site and to restore another section.
For decades there have been on going discussions about the future of Kayaköy
both at national and local level. But with the closure of the churches to the
public in 2013, and publicity in the national media, last year speculation
increased as the development seemed more likely.
Despite these on going concerns, so far nothing has happened.
More recently there has been a call by another group to change
the name of Kaya Köyü to Kayı Köyü but here again there has
been no more news about the referendum proposed for the end of March,
leaving residents wondering whether the change will be made.
but will keep you posted.