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January 19th 2009
Published: January 19th 2009
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Saturday, 17th January, 2009.

We set the alarm for seven. Breakfast was from seven thirty and as we were both going to have something we both washed and dressed.

Breakfast was a self service buffet and we had cereals and toasts. We could have had eggs but didn't bother.

Back to the room, gathered our stuff and down to reception. Paid the bill, asked for the car and it was there by the time we were ready to leave.

The reception was very helpful with directions, of how to get out of Bodrum and gave us a local map.

It was now eight fifteen. Our ultimate destination is Tasucu, but we know that that is not possible in one day. RAC services says it is 500 miles and takes 14 hours.

We had little knowledge of the road conditions, traffic and driving standards. We had some ideas but reality can be different. So we had allowed two days, in our plans.

So our plan was to see how far we could get.

We got out of Bodrum and traffic was very light. Once we were on the main road, we were on reasonable roads. The surface of the road was in some places lousy. But they were wide and in a number of places newly laid.

The traffic was so light, to be no problem at all. The slow traffic gets out of the way, and the lanes up the mountains are set up, two up, one down. So the lorries, and there weren't many, didn't get in the way.

Our overall speed was on average 50 mph, which was better than I expected.

We chose a coastal route which was slightly longer, but later provided us with a number of beautiful views.

As we went along, we saw seven police vehicle checkpoints. The good thing is that when you are heading for one, traffic in the other direction flashes you. Once you have figured out why they are doing it, you then slow down for the checkpoint!

We weren't stopped at any of them, but it wouldn't have mattered as we are entirely legal.

We drove and drove, we decided on a stop at twelve o'clock. The next petrol station after this we stopped at. It was a Petrol Ofisi. They filled the car up and wiped the windows. Said hello, asked where we were from and were interested in us. Pat went to the toilet while the car was being sorted.

I gave the guy some money and a generous tip, due to the notes. He was absolutely delighted and he and his mate were very happy. I backed the car away from the pump and parked in the sun. My turn for the toilet. When I came back the petrol guys had brought us some Turkish tea to drink and were fussing over us.

It was well worth the tip.

We ate some crisps and a banana, they brought us another tea, and we set off again. It had been a very pleasant experience.

We drove on and on again. The road hugged the coastal mountains and gave us splendid views of the Mediterranean. We stopped a couple of times to see the view.

The sun was shining and the temperature was 18°C, lovely blue skies.

The distance for Antalya was shown often and we decided that that what be our end point for the day.

We had driven just over three hundred miles by the time we hit Antalya. The time was three thirty, a good time to stop and find accommodation in daylight.

The town sign said population 850,000+ and seemed to go on into the distance for a long way. The main drag into Antalya had some hotels, we stopped at one that security said was shut.

The next one Pat wasn't keen on, so we tried the Porto Bello Beach & Spa Resort. It had accommodation available. We ended up with an all inclusive package for YTL215,00 and a room on the ninth floor, with a great view of the coast.

We relaxed for a while, then went down to the bar at six fifteen. We had a Gin & Tonic and a coke, then moved through to the Palm restaurant.

The restaurant is a very large self service buffet type place, with counters of the various courses of meals. A vast array of food. I had a soup, then a salad starter, then a main courses, then dessert. To many dishes and types of food to describe. We were both not able to bend very well in the middle afterwards.

Then back up to the room.

We noticed some British accents around the place and noticed later that there is a separate lounge called Saga Lounge, on there door is a sign saying for Saga Holiday people only.

We had driven 319 miles today.


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