Blogs from Central Anatolia, Turkey, Middle East - page 5


Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia » Göreme November 27th 2012

Our second day in Cappadocia was supposed to start with an adventure we had not done before and were very much looking forward to. We were to take the hot air balloon flight that is so famous in Cappadocia. We were picked up from our hotel at 4 am and were taken to the vast open field. In the dark of the night, the field was strewn with numerous huge colorful air balloons those were being prepared for the flight. There were huge fans blowing very hard –which were used to fill the insides of the balloons with air. Once the balloons were somewhat filled with air, fires was blown directed towards the inside of the balloon so that the air inside would get hot and the balloon slowly started to rise. It was as if ... read more
Balloon being fed with air
The air inside balloon being made warm with fire

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia August 18th 2012

Amasya English 'sh' in Turkish is written as 'ş' yet there was nothing harsh at all about the Harşema Otel in Amasya. Accommodation and food I only looked at one other place before I found the Harşema Otel right in the middle of the north bank row of beautifully restored Ottoman houses. An air conditioned single with bathroom was 50TL including breakfast (great buffet the first day, not as awesome subsequently but Turkish coffee was available if I asked for it), WiFi, and probably laundry if I had been motivated enough to collect my clothes. I initially planned 2 nights but stayed a third since Amasya was such a relaxing place and the hotel was really comfortable. Right after arriving at the train station I stumbled across a kebap shop where döner and ayran was 2.50TL ... read more
Amasya at Night

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia August 16th 2012

Trois semaines et demi, c'est jusqu'ici mon voyage en solo le plus long. C'est peu pour certains routards que j'ai rencontré, mais beaucoup pour la majorité d'entre vous! Dans ce blog, j'ai plutôt envie de parler de cette expérience alors que mes photos feront de leur mieux pour vous donner un bref aperçu de ce magnifique pays! Voyager seul c'est facile. On ne pense qu'à soi-même, qu'à nos propres désirs et envies. On suit notre propre rythme et notre propre instinct, nos propres besoin et caprices. Mais de n'être qu'avec soi-même en voyage devient aussi par moments ennuyeux. Ce qui me manquait le plus était de partager les beaux moments et les découvertes avec quelqu'un, de rire ou de soupirer avec quelqu'un. Mais pas avec n'importe qui, mais avec une personne avec qui je pourrai au ... read more
Istanbul, Aya Sophia
Istanbul, palais Topkapi
Istanbul, Harem du Palais Topkapi

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia August 13th 2012

We had a MASSIVE day today! Our wake-up call was at 4am to get up to go hot air ballooning! At least this early start was for something super exciting, not just to get up and get on the bus. So we crawled out of bed literally after very little sleep and heard the Call to Prayer which is the prayer for Ramadan. We’re not usually obviously awake for this so was the first time we heard it. Thankfully the only time! What a racket! J Anyway, most of us piled onto a mini bus and they drove us to the lil restaurant we paid for the flight and had “breakfast.” It was the weirdest breakie ever! Apple tea (normal), chocolate cake and sausages. Very odd but we were all hungry so we attempted to eat ... read more

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia August 12th 2012

We were up at 5am verrry early to get on the bus to Cappadocia today! We had an 11 hour drive so a long time and there were things we wanted to do when we arrived too so we had to leave super early! The trip was actually ok. We all slept a bit, read, edited pics, watched movies, caught up on some bachelorette on my laptop! You know how it goes! J We stopped every 2 hours thankfully for my bladder! When we arrived in Cappadocia we were all blown away! It is incredible. So hard to even describe! Apparently millions of years ago a volcano erupted and left formations of rock all over the city and since then they have all eroded and formed these amazing shaped rocks everywhere!!! So, our pics from this ... read more


Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia August 10th 2012

Our driver dropped us of at Ürgüp, a cozy little town in Cappadocia. We found a nice hotel built in stone. One note, it seems like all the hotels in the region bear 'cave hotel' in their names. Most of these are not proper 'cave hotels', they are simply made out of stone, like ours. A true cave hotel will fetch a high price. Still, our hotel was nice! It is a stone hotel the floors of which are covered by lush Turkish carpets. It also has furniture made of solid wood and old cast-iron cooking tools put on display on the walls. If Cappadocia is wine country, Ürgüp is wine city! We had a lot of fun during our stay sampling wines and eating well. During the next two days, we proceeded to visit Avanos, ... read more
Cappadoce 003
Cappadoce 007
Cappadoce 002

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Ankara August 7th 2012

After Istanbul, my friend Felix and I went to visit Turkey's capital, Ankara, for two days. We were there to meet some of my friends. There was Andre, who studies with me at UCLA and is a good friend of mine. There was also Amanda, who did her M.A. degree at the same school as I, and whom I hadn't seen since graduation. She had since married, and so I was also to meet her husband. It was so great to see all of my friends, and this increased incredibly my enjoyment of my trip! How not to like, not only a feast, but a feast with great company? In Ankara, my hotel was in Ulus, a somewhat poor but not dangerous district. There were some 'slummy' areas nearby, in the alleyways, but even when we ... read more
Museum of Anatolian Civilisation
Street of Anakara

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia » Göreme July 27th 2012

The private tour we took on third day of the southern valleys of Cappadocia was the highlight of our trip. Well, let me say it this way – we had seen lots of pictures of Cappadocia, especially of the hot air balloons, from our friends and other visitors. So when we hiked through the amazing valleys, we had a bit of déjà vu. However, the cave cities we saw on our third day were unexpected and totally mind-blowing. We visited ancient churches in Soğanlı, Sahinefendi, and Cemil, dating from around 1100 to about 1900 A.D. These towns offered cave-church exploring similar to the Göreme Open Air museum but off the beaten path with less crowds and the ability to view the cave drawings up-close. We also got to see traditional village living that has been unchanged ... read more
Kaymakli Underground City
Kaymakli Underground City
Sognali, Cappadocia

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia July 12th 2012

(DEUTSCH UNTEN) G'day! So where ın the hell am I and where should I start? Well first, I'm in a place called Göreme. I'm surrounded by massıve rock penıses(serıously). The start of my travel started lıke thıs: Fırst wake up, ready for my flıght then look at my bag and see that ıt ıs rıpped at the top and the stuff ın the top compartment wıll probably fall out. So... fırst thought "SHIT!", then Anna told me to just take an extra small day bag - and that dıd the job. So no ıt's not ONE MAN ONE BAG anymore (and noone got the joke about the porn vıdeo... ıf you're up to date wıth ınternet vıral vıds look up "2 gırls 1 cup" or better yet "1 man 1 cup"!!! Hmmm no don't on second ... read more
Kocatepe Camıı
Salt Lake
Turkısh Kıds

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia » Göreme July 4th 2012

I sit listening to traditional Gypsy chanting music in a most helpful internet cafe (finally!!). We are in the most incredible little town I think I have ever been in! Sandstone ?? I don't even know what to call them, - oh, yes, formations! (We have been doing so many right brained activities, my left brain is just waking up). These formations rise up from nowhere dominating the landscape in a kind of Disney fashion. It is so surreal and mind boggling (wondering how it was people carved into them to create homes and churches in 3 AD!)~ gazing around town I see the mosque nestled next to one and restaurants and hotels peeking out of these gnome- like sandstone cones! Guy has gone to talk with a really sweet man we met here who sells ... read more
Starting Love Valley Hike
Ohh Kaayy NOW I get it!

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