Blogs from Turkey, Middle East - page 33


Middle East » Turkey October 13th 2012

13 0ctober 2012 We visited two of the nearby towns today. Avanos is on the Kizilimak (Red River) from which it extracts the clay to make the pottery for which it is well known. We visited several of the pottery shops many of which were in caves and had demonstrations of pieces being thrown and decorated. Urgup is set in a valley with honeycombed cliffs all about it. We walked around the market, and the old town and to complete the day had a most enjoyable traditional Hamam (Turkish Bath) where we were really pampered being washed and massaged by the attendants in the hot steamy atmosphere. To complete the day we went to a Cappadocian evening with folk and belly dancing.... read more
Police station Cappadocian style
A big fairy chimney, Wendy is standing at the bottom
Avanos potteries

Middle East » Turkey » Aegean » Fethiye October 12th 2012

Bus ride from Istanbul It was really easy to get a bus ticket from Istanbul to Fethiye. I already knew there was a nightbus with a company called Metro. I just asked around in a few of the many tourist offices in the Sultanahmet area until I got directed to an office caled TourIsta. They among a few others sold bus tickets for that company. I got to choose my seat and it cost me 65 TL. I pre-purchased the ticket, but as soon as I got to the central bus station in Bayranpasa (Otogar Metro station) I realized I could have just bought it there. We left the bus station at 9 p.m. sharp. After picking up more people in the many suburbs of Istanbul we finally started the trip down south. By then it ... read more
On the farmers market
Fresh veggies
The gay turkeys

Middle East » Turkey » Marmara » Istanbul October 12th 2012

September 28 - October 6, 2012 Fly out from Dulles Washington International Airport @ 11:25 PM. 10 Hours Flight Time and Arrived at Ataturk Istanbul International Airport. From there to the Hotel, Easy Metro and Tram Access arrived at Hotel PamPhylia in the Old City area just steps away from the Topkapi Palace. The city of Constantinople dating back to 660 BC as Byzantine Empire, the City that Old and New are quietly coexisting, the city smells like Fish and Incense from the Mosques, the City that I Fell In Love with.... Only the people in Istanbul can walk right pass by the great walls, palaces, and the aqueducts built 3000 years go like they were just built yesterday. All the Friendly Faces and Cheap Food on the Streets and the humming sounds echoing through the ... read more

Middle East » Turkey October 12th 2012

Hi again, Our cruise to Istanbul went through the Dardanelles . Many of the 700 Australians/New Zealanders onboard were up very early to watch the sun rise as we went through the Dardanelles - during which time the events Manager did an impressive and much appreciated presentation on the Anzacs at Gallipoli. A photo with the sun rising over Gallipoli was taken by John. We then continued onto Istanbul where we did a tour of the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Market that afternoon/evening before heading back to the ship for dinner. We tried some turkish delight - nothing like we have at home at all and were told by our Tour Guide where to buy some - well $45EU later we have a large and heavy box full of all types of turkish delight - ... read more
Spice Market
Allah, Mohammed the Prophet & Mary and Jesus together
Earliest Mosiacs

Middle East » Turkey October 11th 2012

11 October 2012 Cappadocia has a unique geological feature. Many millions of years ago there was a huge volcanic eruption. Since then the lava and tuff (consolidated volcanic rock) eroded to form thousands of isolated pinnacles called fairy chimneys. Many were carved out to form churches, dwellings and pigeon lofts. Although it was the first wet and cold day of the trip, we went on an enjoyable tour of the area. We started at a viewing point overlooking Goreme. In the 6th and 7th centuries the Christian population in the area were persecuted by Persian and Arabic armies and they escaped into underground cities which had been constructed in the tuff. Thousands of them lived there for several months until the danger had passed. We visited one today at Kaymakli which entailed much stooping along narrow ... read more
Overlooking Goreme
Negotiating one of the narrow tunnels at Kaymakli
Millstones were used to seal entrances


Middle East » Turkey » Marmara » Istanbul » Sultanahmet October 10th 2012

The flight All I can say is thumbs up for Turkish Airlines. Even though we took off 20 minutes after schedule and had quite a few scary turbulances, we arrived well in time at Istanbul Ataturk Airport. The flight took about 2,5 hours and it was pretty much filled with on board service including a hot meal, soft drinks, beer, wine, tea and coffee. And then, right on time for sunset, we arrived in the former city of Constantinople. Getting away from the airport Typical for a big city, it's pretty easy to get from the airport to the city center. Even a lot easier and remarkably cheaper than any other European city I've been to so far. Basically just follow the Metro (Subway) signs until you arrive at the gates that take you to the ... read more
Blue Mosque
Haga Sofya
Sunset over the old city of Istanbul

Middle East » Turkey October 10th 2012

10 October 2012 We travelled 320k north east today to Goreme in Cappadocia. The route passed over endless grasslands of the Anatolian steppe and followed the ancient Silk route. Every 40 miles or so there are buildings called caravanserai which provided accommodation for the camel trains on their journey. We had a look at a couple of them. The campsite has excellent views over the Goreme Valley.... read more
The caravanserai at Sadeddin
Straight roads on the Anatolian steppe
The caravanserai at Sultanhani

Middle East » Turkey October 9th 2012

09 October 2012 We drove further along the coast and took the opportunity to visit Perge, the Hellenistic and Roman city inhabited between the 3rd century BC and the 3rd Century AD. We had previously seen many of the fine statues recovered during the archaeological excavations at the Anatolya museum. Our next short break was at a waterfall outside the town of Manavgat. We then headed inland through more impressive mountain scenery to the Beysehir on the shores of a lake of that name. The last 50k or the journey was very tortuous on rough unmade surfaces as we passed through extensive road improvements. Everyone arrived with very dirty vans.... read more
The main street with a large watercourse
A fountain
An impressive arch in the Roman baths

Middle East » Turkey October 8th 2012

08 October 2012 A day visiting the old town of Antalya with its Roman harbour, fine Ottoman houses many of which had been restored and converted into small houses and a multitude of shops lining the narrow streets.... read more
Ottoman houses
A shopping street
The bazaar dating from the 15th century

Middle East » Turkey » Marmara » Istanbul » Kadıköy October 6th 2012

The air was thick with heat as I stumbled through the steam; I craved fresh crisp and cool air, instead I struggled to inhale the sticky moisture. My knees easily bought my body to the ground as I desperately reached for the basin. I greedily used bucket after bucket of icy water, however nothing could stop my skin burning. The door was just ahead, no more than a few paces. I pulled myself to my feet feeling every inch of my weight, forcing one foot in front of another my mind swirled and my head swayed. I was so close yet the battle was lost, as feel into the blackness, I reached out to catch myself though I felt nothing. *I floated into the void as my blood spilled around me, suspended around my ... read more

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