Locals smoked, ate, and drank raki like it was going out of business. There was a slight fog only cleared by the cool wet air that blew in at every open of the front door. The sounds of Turkish tongues clacked quickly in excited chatter. And there we were — the awkward foreigners trying hard to be at ease as we knew...
I get this question a lot, and it is not the easiest to answer… because Kyrgyzstan is a different place. You don’t really go there to see a huge, popular monument, and you don’t go to walk around all day in a famous museum.
When wanting to get closer to Sultanahmet, Istanbul, Hostelworld put us in touch with Cheers Hostel. After evaluating the hostel, we have to admit that Cheers is a friendly and memorable hostel that we'd love to stay at again and again.
We told Hostelworld that we wanted to head south of Istanbul to Canakkale so we could explore both Troy and Gallipoli. Hostelworld matched up our plans and set us up with a stay at the Anzac Hotel, right in the downtown of Canakkale.
The third day of our Intrepid Travel tour in Cappadocia involved bike riding... and let's just say that Pat and I are not bike people. It was an experience that I'm glad we attempted, but during those few hours, I'm sure we said once or twice that we would never get on a bike ever again!
I've always been an independent travel type of girl -- tending to shy away from big organized tours for the love of saving a couple bucks and having more free time, but... this tour really helped me see them in a different light.
To be honest, I was surprised I’d like Turkey so much. I think as soon as we left Istanbul, Turkish culture became real to me. I always feel that big cities are too worldly – there are generally too many cultures in one place, and too exposed to outside influences, not to mention too big and fast – to truly understand a country’s overall culture.
Our first taxi driver from the airport to Bahaus Hostel shocked us, but in a good way. His care at every turn along with controlled speed made the trip on Easter Sunday morning — in completely desolate roads — something on par with sightseeing. Perhaps for a minute I thought Turkey had learned to drive in the few months since my departure in October.
Now that it's the end of January (pretty much), I guess it's time to start talking about my future travels that are actually coming up quite quickly! This trip includes Turkey, Italy, Kyrgyzstan, China, Russia, Mongolia and a tiny bit of Thailand.
When you travel in a country that is well-known for bad driving -- notorious for it even -- you might start to worry as soon as your taxi driver decides to answer his phone while driving at 80mph. Turkey is one of the most dangerous driving countries in the world. Here are my experiences from just 4 days in Istanbul.