A Travellerspoint blog

Turkey

Let the travel begin!

sunny 35 °C

16th of august 2010. Here we go :)

So, today its the 16th of august. Quite some emotions run trough my mind. Today its the day i am leaving for almost a year for a big trip going to a lot of countries. Something i have been waiting for for 4 years. Something i have been looking forward to for a very, very long time.
But other emotions come in too. Having to say goodbye to my family. This week also to my grandmother and grandfather. The week before, my other grandmother.
And now, the most difficult of all. Saying goodbye to my sweet girlfriend. Lud, Loca. This was a very very difficult moment. I dont cry quickly. But this time, i really cried. My sweet loca, not seeing her for 3,5 months. In India we will meet up again. But in between we stay in touch ;)

Then the flight Istanbul with Pegasus Air (flypgs.com).
No delays, good airplane and the service was good. Arriving at Istanbul was very strange. From the air the city looks a bit too planned. A bit too perfect. Especially just before arriving at the city, you see nice houses in a circle, with a big swimming pool in between. Obviously the projects for the rich. The sun was setting. Istanbul looked great from the sky.

When arriving, after paying the visa, i went to the bus. This took quite some time, due to a truck that tumbled and blocked the road, causing a huge traffic jam. Finally, after a taxi with a very friendly driver, i arrived at the Nobel Hostel in Sultanahmet, Istanbul. Time to check in and have dinner.

17th of august. Meeting up with old friends.
Today I met up with Fulya and Sara. Both are living in Istanbul and i have met them 4 years ago in Inçekum during a stay in Turkey. They showed me the Sultanahmet mosque and we went to the underwater reservoir. Truly amazing! This has been the water reservoir during the roman empire. You see big pillars, with water beneath. Fishes are swimming here. And you will see the head of Medusa. And this all, close to Sultanahmet, middle of Istanbul. Truly and amazing place to be.
We talked a lot and i was very happy meeting up with Sara and Fulya (thanks girls! I really appreciated). A lot of stories after 4 years of not seeing each other. Really good that we could stay in touch for so long. We also went to the former school of Sara, where we even met up with her former maths teacher, who was very happy to hear that she is now studying at a university to become an architect.

18th of august. Meeting up with another old friend.
So now that i walked a bit around in Istanbul and had some nice kebab (say Istanbul, say Kebab), it was time to meet another friend from 4 years ago. Burcak. Burcak works at the big apple hostel and this hostel is really amazing. It was very good to meet up with him. Since two weeks he is married and we talked a lot. Also, i met up with his college Sharan (if i spell correctly). I enjoyed a lot. Today i also talked to a canadian guy that lives in cairo. We talked a lot, a lot. Also about travelling and he gave me a lot of tips for Egypt. The view from the hostel over the Bosporus is amazing.
My current hostel, Nobel Hostel, also got a great view: over the bosporus on one side, and on the other side, the Sultanahmet Mosque. I have to admit though, that the big apple is a lot better.

19th of augustus
Today i walked around a bit and explored most of Sultanahmet. Also, i walked on the outside of the Topkapi palace. I have to say though, that Istanbul is not as beautifull as i expected. The old Byzantium, Constantinople, now Istanbul. There is history, a lot. But where did it go? Some is still there. But i am a bit dissapointed. Also, prices are a bit high and the salesmen are sometimes a bit pushy. Unfortunately, i had very high expectations maybe. And Istanbul didn't deliver what i expected.

20th of august to 25th of august:
Now, it is the 25th of august, when i am writing this in the bus from Cappadocia (Görome to Istanbul), so i might mix some days up.

One evening Sara and her brother invited me to a salsa party. I met up with Sara at Taksim. A very famous square and we walked trough one of the most modern streets of Istanbul. It was very interesting to see the streetlive here. Later, Ayhan, Sara's brother also joined and we went to see more of the street. (with lots of cats that i really like.). So, up to the salsa party. The place was really nice. Beautifully decorated. A good place for salsa. We danced outside. Not a lot of people, but great atmosphere. Both Ayhan and Sara turn out to be very good dancers. Although Ayhan is so hunble to say that he is not so good. But he is very good. Sara knows her skills. She is really a very good dancer. I danced a few times with her and i know that she has more skills than I. It was really nice that they invited me to this party.

Later I went to Cappadocia, by night bus. 10 hours in a bus! Oeff a lot. But it was doable. Actually i was having a nice skype meeting with my girlfriend (really good to show her the surrounding area of the big apple hostel), i just ordered my chicken sis kebab and there the bus arrived. Had to quickly stop the skype, take my kebab and go to the bus. 10 hours. In the bus i met up with Bam, a Dutch guy. During the bus, we had a lot of fun watching a movie; Tom Yung Goong. A Thai movie with Tony Jaa. What a good fight scenes. What a bad storyline. But how enjoyable. I enjoy the martial arts of Tony Jaa, and Bram seemed to do so too.
So, 10 hour drive. Can you imagine? Not easy. Definately not, if you cannot sleep. Impossible. So, arriving wrecked in Cappadocia, Göreme. The surrounding area looks really great! So after 4 hours sleep i went to explore the city and went to Bram his hostel.

The next day we took a tour in the surrounding area. The underground city. WOW! This is really unique. 2000 people sheltered underground during the invasions of enemies. And people live in caves. Or actually, it's not real caves, but something that is left after vulcanic eruptions. This area is amazing. After Istanbul, i really enjoy Cappadocia a lot.

In Cappadocia i went mountainbiking with Bram. And we, two dutch guys went offroad with the bikes. It was very good. The strange thing though is that suddenly after, we had a drink in a town and bram was intending to buy a drum (but didnt buy it), we both had a flat tire. Was it the offroad, or did someone let the air go out. We will never find out. But it did cost us 5 lira per tire (2,50 euro).
Also, the day before, we went quadriding. At first, Bram, and i on the back. Later, i was the driver. We went really crazy hard and twice i managed to drive on two weels. Really cool. Once even it was a bit tricky going towards a place where the ground went down rapidly. A big quick turn, on two wheels, almost craching, 1 metre away from the lower ground. But we had a lot of fun. Later, making more stunts, offroad, spinning and more. I like quadriding :) We enjoyed a lot.
There was also a Japanes couple. First on the quad. The guy driving. But he was very affraid. They almost crashed. So they went on the scooter of the guide. The guy again managed to crash, this time with the scooter. So Bram and i tried to make the girl the quaddriver. It worked and she turned out to be quite a good driver.
Later we we were at the mushroom valley. Actually everyone knows that the eroded stones dont look like mushrooms, but like..you imagine. Big masculine pieces of flesh. We made some really nice pics and Bram got the pictural blowjob of the Japanese girl. And the guy, her boyfriend told her to do so ..yes, we had fun!

So another day i met up with a girl from the hostel. Bram already left to Canacacle (Troy). I met with Crimson, a designer from London. We had dinner and afterwards were invited to go to a carpet place. The thirth biggest in Turkey. 35000 pieces of carpet. Its amazing, like walking into a 1001 night fairytail. The salesmen talked with a lot of passion. It was truly amazing!

Now, on the bus to Istanbul. Super full. So for 10 hours, sleeping is virtually impossible. Oeff. Difficult again.We will see.
Tomorrow i meet up with Sara and Fulya their family. They are preparing a very nice meal. Looking forward to that. Also, i will go to the big apple. Meeting Burcak and Sharan again.
Looking back: Cappadocia was really really nice. I would recommand everyone in Turkey to go there.
Istanbul until now has not shown its sharm that i expected. But i have a few days left. Maybe my mind will change.
In the meantime i had some skype meetings with my sweet girlfriend in Londen, Gotenborg and Geneva. She is travelling a lot, so everytime i meet her somewhere else. It is very good to keep so strongly in touch with her. Loca, i miss you and i am happy to stay in contact like this!

Posted by Aussierala 02:10 Archived in Turkey Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

The big dream starts

Less than 3 weeks to go..ONE year off.

semi-overcast -19 °C

Wow! Less than 3 weeks and then the big trip starts!
Istanbul, Egypt, Dubai, Asia, India. And after? All is still unknown.

A trip for which i have been waiting for for years. A trip for one year that is going to change my life.
Unbelievable. Just 3 weeks from now it starts..

Am I nervous? No, actually not. Maybe a little though. I am too busy with some other projects (more business-like). Not nervous..not YET nervous, i would say. I notice that the time is ticking. Vaccins have been taken. New passport is ready.. So almost all is set. The backpack and gear? Well, since i have travelled for a lot of times already, most of it is ready. Just some extra shopping will be enough.

Soon..soon..soon i will be saying goodbye to my friends and sweet girlfriend (thanks for coming to holland for 2,5 weeks :) ), then..something amazing will start. Will i change? Yes, definately. In a good way? Yes, for sure. How will i change? No idea. One big, interesting year of lots of meetings, conversations, good food, beautifull pictures and dreams lies ahead.
One year also of not seeing my friends, missing my girl for 3,5 months (meeting up in India again), and probably also seeing poverty, losing track, missing trains, getting diahrrea or worse (hopefully not too much). One year of unique experiences. One year that i definately not want to miss..

One year that is going to change my live.

Going to happen in less than 3 weeks..

I'm having fun starting the trip. I hope you enjoy reading it.

Posted by Aussierala 08:13 Archived in Netherlands Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

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