Published: June 13th 2010December 17th 2009
• 12-17-09 Arrival in Antalya
Ok, first big trip in a while. Just over two weeks, one in Turkey and then nine days in Egypt. We took the ride from the pension from the airport and basically went to sleep. Sabah Pension was an absolute great experience and I highly recommend it. They had home cooked meals for good prices, the family that runs it was very nice, the rooms were good for the price, and the watchdog was a little rough looking, but also nice. We arrived in Antalya late so we didn’t get to really do anything other then take a quick walk to the water. The old town seemed very safe, there were police on scooters just riding around.
The next morning we woke up pretty early, so we can go to Termessos. The hostel offered the Turkish breakfast, which I learned to love very quickly. It contains, cucumbers, tomatoes, bread, some type of meat salami thing, goat cheese, hard-boiled eggs, and jams, butter, etc. It is honestly the perfect breakfast in my eyes. That morning I thought the butter was cheese spread and did put a large amount on my bread.
• 12-18-09 Antalya
Ok, out to Thermoses. It was about a 45-minute ride with “the driver” from Saboh and we were able to see the giant face of Ataturk on the way. The downside of this side trip to the Roman ruins was it was raining when we arrived. The rain wasn’t to bad, since we had hoods and jackets, however the rocks became very slippery thus we had many near falls. The park is not very easy to guide yourself through like many commercialized ruins in Italy or Greece. We got the most likely unapproved of opportunities to climb all over things. It was a lot of fun and made for some interesting pictures. Once we got back to the “driver” after about four or five hours, we had tea with him and the park guard. It is always nice to have a warm glass of Turkish tea after many hours in the cold rain.
Once we arrived back into Antalya we went for the large Sabah provided meal for an inexpensive price. Soup, salad, bread, rice, vegetables inside a grilled eggplant, and a couple beers hit the spot. We went out for a hookah and glass of wine after (when
in Turkey) and found a nice spot just off the main road. The place just opened, so they were very nice to us and gave us some free wine, chocolates, and discounted our overall bill. Afterwards we went back with intentions of going to bed, however we heard a lot of music near our hostel and followed it. The noise led us to a party in a restaurant, where everyone was dancing and drinking. I saw many people drinking a white beverage and I asked the waiter what it was and he told me it was a Turkish specialty, so I ordered us two. He brings over a large glass filled with straight alcohol and then proceeded to fill the other half with some bottled water. The drink was Raki and the taste was not so great. We sat back for a while, but eventually they brought us into the dancing and we stayed there most of the night.
The next morning was not the easiest to wake up too, since the previous night was covered in various versions of alcohol. However at breakfast we did have a long conversation with an old man, who moved
to Antalya to die! He told us he used to be an author and work for CNN, his wife was in soup operas, and his kids were now in New Dehli and New York. He was very interesting and wanted to talk all day, but it was time for us to walk around Antalya.
Especially because it was beautiful outside, so we started towards the harbor. We took random side roads in that direction and stopped for freshly squeezed orange and pomegranate juice, which was of course amazing. In the harbor we haggled by every single person, asking if we wanted a boat ride, shoes polished, or if we wanted to buy some nuts. We actually had one guy chase us trying to polish Katherine’s shoes as we walked up stairs. Afterwards we went into the market/ bazaar place across from the water were I got bamboozled by a Turkish delight/ tea salesman. He continued to tell us how we needed to live and its all pure magic. This was the first time where one of these guys has been successful on me… it hurt inside, even though it didn’t cost very much. On the way back a random
We had to take our shoes off each time to cross
guy asked us about ten questions while we were in an ATM. I tried to make him go away and he eventually did and he didn’t come back and rob us, which was nice.
That late afternoon we took the bus to Olympus. The ride had great views and dropped us off at the wrong place, so we needed to take a “taxi” down into the valley. This was ok, but once we were brought to our hostel… we actually weren’t. The driver told us its about 100 meters up the road, so we started to walk and then there was a river. We were a bit confused at first and asked the girl at the hostel on our side of the river. She tried to make us stay at their place, so we just decided to bite the bullet by crossing it. I took off the jeans and got my shoes wet, while Katherine rolled up her pants and lost her sandals in the quickly flowing knee deep water. By this time it was pitch black and we were wet and cold. Oh well, apart of the adventure I suppose. We got the hostel and they gave us
dinner and beer, while explaining that its off-season and no one is in Olympus now. So, we played circle of death and bluff with the only other guest in the hostel from Istanbul.
Breakfast of champions, it was even better here then in Antalya. Afterwards we headed out to see the sights and do a little hiking. The entire place was flooded; we needed to make small bridges to get towards the ruins and beach. We crossed rock, stick, wood, and metal bridges that were made by the locals during the worst flood in a very long time. We met a small dog along the way; he guided us to the sea, but ditched us for some fishermen near the end. Along the way there were some Roman ruins near the river and in the woods at times. Nothing mind-boggling. The beach was interesting, a couple of cars were in the sea, but it was nice overall, and I am sure it would be nice in season.
After another river crossing, we set out for the hike up a mountain. We were instructed to go next to the bar that was closed, but there were about
five barking dogs and the “path” wasn’t exactly a path. So, we kind of just made our own and eventually found some path markers. The hike didn’t exactly last very long, because it turned into rock climbing. We went up many large boulders and one face that was about twenty feet. Katherine wanted to continue, but I drew the line at the thirty-foot face with a rope going up the wall. Ok, if the season was in and we were with other people, but the shack about 2k away-marked “emergency” didn’t seem very appetizing for a broken leg. Afterwards we wanted a snack, but most things were closed so we grabbed some nuts and a beer, but we followed it up with some good fish from Bayrams.
There are more photos below