A Six Month Odyssey

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March 4th 2020
Published: March 4th 2020
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3rd/4th Feb 2020

Goreme, Cappadocia

The Green Tour!

There are three tours you can do at any one of the hundred tour agencies in the little town of Goreme. Red, Green and Blue. We opted for green and today we travelled around 250 kms to visit some spectacular sights.

The Derinkuyu underground city: These cave cities were originally excavated around 1700 BC, and are as deep as 85m! That's almost 4000 years old! They believe they were built to withstand attacks rather than be permanent dwellings, but they contained all of the usual rooms found in a normal city - stables, storage rooms, kitchens, wineries, studies and churches. The extensive network of passages and tunnels and inclined corridors linked family rooms and communal spaces where people would meet, work and worship. Corridors could be quickly blocked off with carefully balanced, moving round stone doors, some weighing up to two tonne!

Our guide, Mehmet, challenged Knackers and Diego to push the stone closed but when it actually started to move he started yelling for them to stop. He hadnt imagined that they could budge it in the slightest! It is one of the few times I'm happy to be shorter than most, as in some places these tunnels are no more than 3 - 4 feet high and around 2 feet wide, narrower in places that we are unable to go.

Ihlara Valley hike - The canyon was formed thousands of years ago by the river and has a depth of about 100m and there are around 300 steps down in to the valley where we pick it up. It was a beautiful walk of around an hour along the river to the village of Belisirma, where we had lunch. The stone churches carved in to the canyon walls in this area are stunning!

Selime Monastry - This church/cathedral is believed to have been built in the 8th or 9th century, and it is still possible to make out some of the original frescos from the 10th and 11th centuries. It is so beautiful and we are allowed free access to most of the areas via the small tunnels and steps.

Pigeon Valley- The valley gets its name from the thousands of pigeon houses that were carved in to the rock since ancient times. In Cappadocia, pigeons have long been a source of food and fertilizer!

The day tour today was so good we have decided to do the red tour tomorrow.

Dinner at the Viewpoint Cafe and restaurant was delicious and provided the most beautiful views of this brightly lit little town of Goreme. Tonight we tried the Testi Kebab..... dont panic, its not what it sounds like, its just a beef claypot!

4th Feb 2020

Goreme, Cappadocia

Red tour:

Open air museum, Love Valley, Fairy Chimneys .....Same same but different really - bloody fantastic! We have had a brilliant few days catching up with Colleen, and she has taken off to Selçuk tonight. Tomorrow we fly back to Istanbul for an overnignt stop over, and then we catch our bus to Varna in Bulgaria.

It's supposed to be a 9 hour journey. They are never 9 hours because they stop all over the place picking up every Tom, Dick and Harry and pocketing the cash for themselves, and then there's the added 20 minute stops for the driver, and then some clown thinks just because we've pulled in to a bus station, that he can jump off the bus and go to the bathroom, take his sweet time, holding everything up even further.

In fact today, we saw a big coach driving down a dirty, dusty road, followed by a young Asian girl running and waving frantically behind it. This should not be the exception, it should be the norm. I couldn't help but have a quiet chuckle thinking to myself, I bet you're on time next time. 😁 Don't incovenience people by being the habitually late at every place you stop!

Our first Indian meal in two months did not disappoint tonight. I thought I had died and gone to heaven!

Shane says: Absolutely magic four days in Cappadocia. Lots of amazing history. A place that is easy on the eye. Tours that are well run. Great restaurants. Friendly people. Cheap beers. What more could a man want. Put this place on your bucket list punters!Coming to the end of our time in Turkey. Sad to be going. Big adventures to come.

Sharls says: I'm not sad to be going! Lets blow this pop stand!

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