The monastery is considered to date back to the 12th century AD. It is declared a monument of culture and houses a small museum. The name comes from the Turkish word for colorful ("aladzha") due most probably to the bright colors of its wall paintings, which date back to the early Middle Ages.
An external staircase connects the two levels of the monastery situated high above the ground. There, one can find the monks cells, common rooms and sanctuaries, dug directly into the limestone rock.
The monks' private cells, common rooms (i.e. kitchen, dining room) and a small church are located on the lower floor while the upper level hosted a chapel.
The primitive monks' cells are considered to have been inhabited as early as 4th century AD.
Although only few of the frescoes have been preserved (most of them in the chapel) it is an unforgettable experience to visit this monastery dug high above the ground into a steep rock.
Nearby, there is a similar monastery complex, called Katakombite (The Catacombs). Unfortunately, its remains are far less preserved.