Vivian dropped by today with her new puppy, Marley. It’s a cavoodle & ubercute so all the flatties went crazy. Kristina in a competition with the puppy to see who could be more cute for the camera. Shot by the afternoon light barely eking in from the grey day outside.
Off to the Black Sea!! We decided at the last minute when we hit the bus station at Ankara that we really didn’t want to do to another big city. So after a 4 1/2 hour bus journey we had yet another 5 hours to Amasra. Amasra is a pretty little seaside village with a population of only 6,500 but it swarms on weekends with local Turkish tourists. Again set amongst city walls and ruins this town certainly had character. We (or should I say “I”) really had fun when we arrived at 9.00pm trying to find a pensiyon. We stuck out like sore thumbs and I must say communication was an issue. Poor Mikey wasn’t too impressed when I pointed up yet another cobble stoned hill and said “up there”. I must want to collect on his life insurance!!! The room was pokey, bathroom like a closet, no aircon, but what can one expect from a family pensiyon at 50YTL approx AU$35. BUT….the view from the pensiyon’s balcony was beautiful. Great fish restaurants, markets with a lot of crap, fishing boats and a real live disco (just below our pensiyon of course) Onward bound to Safranbolu….. Cheers to those […]
This is a region in central Turkey consisting of many cities and towns famous for it’s unusual rock formations formed from various prehistoric volcanic eruptions. We chose to stay in a small tourist orientated town called Goreme where during the day we could take day tours visiting wonderful historic sites & trek through beautiful gorges sometimes climbing quite high above the valley floor to seek out the many abandoned “buildings” made among the rocks. At night there were many restaurants to choose from all specialising in the local Cappadocian cuisine of clay pot cooking. This was a welcome relief from the nice but not too varied food we had been eating thus far. Poor Debbie got to live her greatest fears (Motorbikes, heights & claustrophobia) 4 days running. Credit to her, even though she was terrified she pushed through and allowed herslf to enjoy the experience (when it was over). After checking in to our room at the Star Cave Hotel we went Quad biking at 5:30pm for 2 hours to some bizarre landscapes and an amazing sunset. Quick history lesson: The area was first populated by the Hitites around 1000 BC who were able to make dwellings in the […]
Egirdir – what a magical place. This is a tiny fishing village set on the 3rd largest freshwater lake in Turkey. We stayed in a lovely pension run by Ibrahim who owns 2 pensions – we slept at one and ate at the other. The home cooked meals by his mother were delicious. The setting is gorgeous, views of the lake from everywhere. Ibrahim and his family and Mustafa the local fisherman were wonderful hosts who made our 4 days at Egirdir memorable. The village is surrounded by stone walls and there is a castle on the top of the hill. This pic is of the courtyard in the middle of the village. How romantic!!! Us sitting in the outdoor lounge at sunset waiting for dinner. When Ibrahim showed us a bag of live crayfish the next morning I thought I had died and gone to heaven (and so did Mikey) The crayfish dinner, caught by Mustafa that morning, was delicious!! The next morning it was up at 5.30am for a 6.00am start to go fishing. (Well we didnt fish but we enjoyed watching Mustafa fish) The “catch” Unfortunately it was only a small catch for 1 1/2 hours worth […]
We stopped of at Olympos for a scheduled 5 nights after our wonderful gulet cruise only to discover a street full of backpacking pensions with supposed “tree houses” for accommodation and an “amazing” beach. On arrival we were rather disappointed expecting tree houses like we had stayed at in Western Samoa only to find rows of little wooden shacks. More like a holiday camp!!! Needless to say I changed the 5 nights to 2 nights – a good move, as one full day there was plenty to see the ruins and have a swim. a The beach….mmmmm…huge and beautiful on looking from a distance. Amazing backdrop of cliffs but full of tourists. We are so spoilt by our beaches in Australia, this one was pebbly and the water was scattered with debris. (lots of floaties….) On the walk to the beach were amazing ruins – see pics below Sarcophogi dating back to the 2nd century AD A little track led to the ruins, very pretty setting surrounded by streams and overhanging trees. Another sarcophagus, we were tempted to climb inside! Bit too spooky though. An old church with magnificent moziac floor tiling and such detailed carvings. On to Antalya and […]
From Fethiye we took a 3 night cruise on the Mediterranean around the Southern Turkish coast to Olympos. There were 17 passengers & 3 crew. Of the 17 there were 3 from Basque, 2 American guys, 1 Kiwi girl with the balance being Australian. Each day consisted of visiting places of interest such as scenic island towns or ruins of ancient cities, interspersed with many swimming stops where we could just dive over the side into the crystal clear turquoise waters before coming back on board to find a fresh sumptuous meal awaiting. The captain was the same size as Deb and ‘tho he enjoyed giving her a cuddle from time to time I think he enjoyed dancing with one of the three 6 foot plus young girls more. When we stopped it was usually in a sheltered bay where there were other gulets and we would be ‘serviced’ by a flotilla of small vessels selling everything from pancakes to jet ski rides. At night out would come the music, dancing & hookahs. On our last day we visited a sunken city and a pirates cave before going ashore for a 2 hour bus ride to Olympos.
Fethiye is a great little seaside holday town with a little bit of a Surfers/Byron vibe to it. It mainly caters for British tourists, but fortunately we stayed in an area at the other end of town from those resorts. The first tour we did from here involved getting picked up early in the morning in a convertable jeep that holds 10 people and joining about 4 other jeeps along the way. Our first stop was visiting some caves…. …then more ruins…. ….with a nice little break at a trout farm that also sold Gozleme (sorta like crepes). You could even go fishing without leaving the bar. There was little streams & waterfalls everywhere in a landscape setting….. …that was dotted with raised wooden platforms that were scattered with cushions & rugs. As we drove from place to place throughout the day it became a bit of a “thing” at various points for the driver to slow down while local children sprayed us with water. We had been warned at the beginning we would get wet so most people wore appropriate clothing and hid cameras, etc and while a shock the first time we actually started to look forward to […]
As we pulled into the carpark that led to the ancient city of Ephesus we had to run the gauntlet of the obligatory souvenir shops but this is the 1st time I’ve seen one so honest in his adverstising. By now we were becoming experts at ruins and were quite easily able to see the effect that different cultures had on the structures, for eg: when you saw terracotta clay sewerage pipes & arches you knew the Romans had been there. And we were able to tell the difference between a Corinthian & an Ionian column. It appears at many of these sites they find the bits & pieces lying around or after excavation but no-one is going to drive across the country & pay $30 to see some scattered rubble. So the clever little blighters piece back together a few of the larger bits and recreate (restore) a little more until they have a few facades or columns to give the essence of what might have been. OK Trivia question: Can anyone tell me the name of this goddess below. Clue: Her name is a famous global brand today. If you said Adidas you were close but no cigar…..meet […]
As we were doing a tour and then travelling some distance to our next location We had to be up at sunrise and this was the view from our balcony when we arose. Our minivan jumped on a car ferry and we made our way to an ancient city known by many names to various people, but most of you will know it as Troy. We had been warned that their was not much to see there other than the wooden horse some artist had made back in the ’90s, so we were not too dissapointed when all we found were a few blocks & fallen columns lying around. The guide had made the trip a little more interesting by telling us the tale of Troy as told by Homer in the Illiad & the Odyssey. He gave us all parts to play and I was Zeus and Deb would be my wife Herra. It could have been worse, he could have made her my girlfriend Helen. (the mind boggles!!) After lunch we proceeded to a less famous city of Antiquity, Pergamun. Here we walked around the various sites and theatres that have thus far been excavated. Although less visited, […]