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Whirling Dervishes Ceremony

Created with Sketch. Cappadocia,TURKEY
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60 minutes

Tour Type

Daily Tour

Group Size





Semâ is the name of the whirling dance performed by the disciples of the Mevlâna. Semâ means to whirl round, to dance, to attain ecstasy by means of music.

The center for this sect is Konya, three hours away by driving from Cappadocia. But Every evening there are Dervish performances in Cappadocia .

The Whirling Dervishes in Cappadocia  performed at Sarihan Caravanserai  twice a day at 6.00 and 9.00 pm. The whole ceremony takes about one hour so and after the ceremony you are offered ‘Şerbet’, ( cinemon tea ) a religious drink. You will get picked up  from your hotel in Cappadocia about an hour before, which will give you enough time to look around in the old caravanserai before the performance starts. In order not to distract the whirling dervishes, photography or video shooting is not allowed during the performance. However, after the performance, they come again for photo and video shooting. At the end of the performance, you will have your Serbet and then you will be transferred back to your hotel.

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  • Experience the spiritual ceremony of The Sema first hand
  • Hear traditional music during the Sufi ceremony
  • See the ancient caravanserai


  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off
  • A religious drink called Serbet
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips

Know Before You Go

Booking Conditions

Tour Length

1 hour

Group Size


Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Cappadocia,TURKEY


What is Whirling Dervish?
The Mevlevis are also known as the "whirling dervishes" due to their famous practice of whirling as a form of dhikr (remembrance of God). Dervish is a common term for an initiate of the Sufi path; whirling is part of the formal sema ceremony and the participants are properly known as semazens.
Why do Whirling Dervishes not get dizzy?
Three semi-circular canals, called the organs utricle and saccule in the inner ear which sensitive to the movements of the head available. Movements during the "sema", their wearings, inner peace, their diet prevent the emergence of dizziness, nausea, a imbalance sense in Whirling dervishes.
Can a woman be a whirling dervish?
Traditionally, only men can dance as Whirling Dervishes, although that is beginning to change.
What Sufism means?
Sufism is a mystical variation of Islam. By practicing Sufism, Sufis seek to have a close, personal experience of God. ... Sufism simply includes more mysticism and rituals, like the spinning dance done by "whirling dervishes." In Arabic, Sufi means "man of wool."
Where are whirling dervishes from?
Whirling dervish ceremonies were started as a form of meditation by Celâleddin-i Rumi, the famous Sufi Muslim mystic and poet, in the 13th century. The Persia-born Rumi — who was living in Konya, then the capital of the Turkish Seljuk Empire — told his followers, “There are many roads which lead to God.
Why do whirling dervishes spin counter clockwise?
Raising their arms, holding their right palm upward toward heaven and their left palm downward toward earth, they gradually start whirling in a counter clockwise direction. Why the whirl? ... The Whirling Dervish actively causes the mind to participate in the revolution of all other beings.


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