A 5,000-year-old underground city has been discovered in a historical area in the central Turkish province of Nevşehir.
The ancient underground settlement, discovered in the country’s central Angolia region in Cappadocia area, is thought to be the largest of its kind in the world.
The head of Turkey’s housing development administration, Mehmet Ergün Turan, said the discovery was made during preparations for a housing project in the area.
“It is not a known underground city. Tunnel passages of seven kilometers are being discussed. We stopped the construction we were planning to do on these areas when an underground city was discovered,” Turan said.
About 44 artifacts have so far been taken from the site by the administration for preservation. Turkey’s Cultural and Natural Heritage Preservation Board has also officially registered the area.
According to Hasan Unver, a local mayor near the area where the city was found, previous discoveries were nothing more than a “kitchen” compared to the recent city.
Experts say the Cappadocia region, once a Roman province, was suitable for constructing underground cities because of its soft volcanic rocks.
The most well-known underground settlement in Turkey’s central region is called Derinkuyu, a multi-leveled city that is large enough to house thousands of people.