Where am I?

Created this blog to document my travels, experiences & thoughts thru Central & South America but hell plan to blog my travels to where ever. Goofy harmless Free Spirit hoping to spend most of my time with locals & enjoy the world! So hang on as I travel, drink cervezas, raise a little hell, maybe piss off a few people & hopefully not give Canadians a bad reputation! Of course don't do these things on purpose but while having a good time well "Shit Happens"!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

A 14 hr bus trip, a 6 hr hike in gorgeous hills & valleys but Cappadocia is too touristy so left after the great hike as dislike bus tourists

So Roland my German traveling mate and I separated company in Van, Turkey after a week or more hanging and traveling thru Iraqi Kurdistan and the PKK stronghold area around Hakkari in south East Turkey. He was off to take a ferry across Lake Van to catch a train to Istanbul and then a flt back home. While I wanted to catch the ferry too but the timing didn't coincide with the bus I needed to catch to go to Cappadocia a nice place for hiking & chilling in Central Turkey. As usual I planned to catch an overnite bus so I'd save 1 night's accommodations. the Turkish buses are great so although I didn't get more than maybe 5 hrs sleep I felt not too bad when I arrived in Kaysari a city of about 1.5 million at the start of the Cappadocia region. Of course I wanted to head to a little village Goreme so I could do some hiking in the hills. The bus just dropped me off on a street in this city as it was heading to Ankarra. So I had no clue where I was so thought shit I'll catch a mini bus (dolmus) to the bus station. A person needed a sort of bus pass which u put in a box to ride the city buses. So of course I had no bus pass but one of the passengers came and paid my fare. I was also lucky in that I picked the right bus and correct direction as it dropped me off by the central bus station so I could catch a bus to Goreme where I wanted to go!

Pictures of the bus ride from Van in Eastern Turkey to Cappadocia in central Turkey

Pics of Lake Van which takes the ferry 4 hrs to cross and can also carry a train which was coming from Iran. It was late so I couldn't risk waiting or I'd miss my bus to Cappadocia but Roland wanted to catch that trainl.

Roland and I having the famous Turkish breakfast in Van before parting ways!

Cappadocia which is unique in the world and is a miraculous nature wonder is the common name of the field covered by the provinces of Aksaray, Nevsehir, Nigde, Kayseri and Kirsehir in the Central Anatolian region. The Cappadocia region was formed as a result of the vulcanic eruptions occurred in Erciyes, Hasandag and Gulludag, in the region was formed a large tableland from the vulcanic tufas and together with the erosion of the Kizilirmak river and wind over ten thausands of years there appeared the chimney rocks which are a wonder of the nature.

The first Christians escaped from the persecution of the Roman Empire in the 2nd century B.C. came to the Cappadocia over the Antakya and Kayseri and they have settled here. The first Christians finding the underground cities from Cappadocia have been hidden in these underground cities which gates were made in such way in which they couldn't be easily observed and they have escaped from the persecution of the Roman soldiers. Due that they had live in the underground cities for long duration without being able to go out they have developed these underground cities by making provisions rooms, ventilation chimneys, wine production places, churches, abbeys, water wells, toilets and meeting rooms. In the prehistoric periods the first human settlements have begun and the humans have constructed the underground cities in the volcanic rocks in form of tufa due to protect themselves from the wild animals and they lived for long times in these underground cities. There are so many underground cities on the Cappadocia area of Turkey but the biggest is Derinkuya Underground city.

In these cities made in form of rooms connected to each others some of the rooms were connected to each other only with the tunnels tight and permitting passing of just a person. At the access gates of these tunnels there were huge stone rollers used for closing the tunnels for security reasons.

So I made it to Goreme around 8 am, got a room in one of the many cave type pensions. So grabbed a shower a bite to eat and decided to go for a hike around. There's an outdoor museum of Goreme but stayed about 15 mins and then couldn't handle all the bus tourists who were wandering so slow that a person couldn't see a thing. So shit I left and started walking in the hills and valleys and found it so relaxing and invigorating to be outdoors away from the bus tourists crowding the town and other places.

I was really surprised at how many Chinese tourists there were as don't usually see that many around these parts of the world. But it's good to see them enjoying the scenic beauty of the place. But what amazed me was when I was hiking in the heat of the day through some hills and valleys a bit out of the way. I run into this Chinese man and 2 women who couldn't speak English but were lost. I tired to help them head in the right direction but don't know if they really understood. They really seemed like fish out of water. Or they seemed to have gone for a Dim Sum meal and got lost and ended up hiking in these hills and valleys way out of town. I could tell they weren't into hiking or being in the sun as the 2 ladies had big scarves around their face so they wouldn't get sun tans or brown as Asian women don't like to be dark! Thought they were Arab women with the big scarves at first!

But other than those 3 people most of the people seemed like regular hikers who were enjoying the views and hike. But didn't see any turkish people as they don't seem to be big on rigorous outdoor exercise but stuck to bus tours! I can tell u there were a lot of those. In fact the village of Goreme was packed with them! I could tell it was a tourist place when the prices in restuarants were twice as high as most places in Turkey! I guess the restuarant owners know that tourists on a 2 week vacation like to go out for dinner at night regardless of the price as they like first class places.

But shit I had enough of the crowds and line ups cus after places I had been in the past months well I couldn't handle the tourist crowds! So I packed up and left Goreme and Cappadocia on the night bus the next night and went to Istanbul!

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