Friday, March 13, 2015

Turkey - Cappadocia (I Conquered Turkey)


How did this day go by? Pretty much a day taken up by road travelling. Right after breakfast and till we arrived late evening in Cappadocia ( Canakkale/Kusadasi/Pamukkale  & Istanbul Turkey ). Of course loo and meal breaks were not compromised, thanks to our pleasant tour guide who made it a point in enlivening us by sharing his knowledge on Turkey. This adorable guide also gave us a five minutes quickie break at the roadside where by right stopping is not allowed, but he still went ahead since we couldn't contain our excitement of seeing snow for the first time. I made sure a candid shot of me snow playing was captured, and within the next jiffy, we dashed back into the coach. 

By late afternoon, between Cappadocia and Konya and in this small quiet town, we had akin a two-in-one stop, Century Sultanhani Caravenserai viewing and comfort break for easing our almost sore butts. While some tour buddies headed to the café across for snacks and drinks, the rest of us walked into Century Sultanhani Caravenserai. Built between 1299 and 1236 by Turkish Sultan Alaaddin Keykubat I, Century Sultanhani Caravenserai, a caravan way-station, has been restored numerous times in its eight centuries of existence. Over time, half a century past, Caravanserai became the pullover for traders who will be heading to Istanbul next. For me, Century Sultanhani Caravenserai actually resembled as an ancient Turkish mansion. My view. Intricate craving, huge arches and pillars outside and thick walls between the different rooms inside. 




Less than half an hour, that's about it in Century Sultanhani Caravanserai, we took back to the road for journeying towards Cappadocia. Dinner and off to bed. What trigger started our morning in Cappadocia? None other. No other. Don’t even think of anything else. The only thing that should pop up in your mind is Hot Air Balloon Ride for which I paid almost RM900.00. Really expensive. Then again, if I have made it this far from Malaysia to Turkey, don’t you think I will badly regret saying no to this world known Hot Air Balloon Ride? You bet. Started us off really early, I can't even recall when was the last time I woke up at 4.00pm, by 5.30am were already in the small café for breakfast. A simple breakfast and none more. Essentially for locking energy and for keeping our tummies noise free. By 7.00am, we had already arrived at the huge open area for this much awaited pride of Turkey. Helped into the basket by strong and firm hands, 10 to a basket means you just have to stay put in one direction.
Balloon released in air, we flew high up with it for Cappadocia’s helicopter view. Amazing. Super marvelous. The whole lot of Cappadocia. Balloon continued to drift in air for half an hour prior to slowly bringing us down in another area. Literally lifted out of basket, we tossed champagne and received certificates for our bravery. 
We then had a brief stop in Avanos Town where we stood at the hilltop for nature breather and pigeon watching. Of course, picturesque is a must as well.

Off to the carpet factory thereafter for gaining some insight on silk, wool and hand woven carpets. Other than that, it was practically a sales gimmick. Carpet buying. Didn't at all lure me. Carpet beautifying my home and then spending my time vacuuming? Oh please. I got better things to do.
Out of carpet factory, I waited outside before we departed for lunch in "Uranos Sarikaya" underground restaurant. Fantastic. Walking into the cave, and also tucking into the pretty delicious meal down under.
"Underground City of Kaymakli" was next in line. The widest cave city in Cappadocia with nearly one hundred tunnels and opened to visitors in 1964, be prepared to crawl, bend, tilt and walking sideways. Otherwise, better to opt out from visiting this also lacking in ventilation underground Kaymakli village. I did fine. Though I was rather panicky if palpitation will return to haunt me, thankfully, I walked out in one piece.

The finale sightseeing in Cappadocia took place in "Goreme Open-Air Museum". One of Turkey's UNESCO World Heritage Sites which holds the best collection of painted cave-churches and cave by itself craved by medieval orthodox Christian monks (1000-1200 AD) from the soft volcanic stones and decorated with elaborate Byzantine frescoes, depicting the Bible.
End of Cappadocia sightseeing.







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19 comments:

  1. Oh wow, that sounds like fun! Never been on a balloon before and not sure if I'm brave enough too!

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  2. what a beauty place! There are so many hot air balloons!!

    ps: Happy New Year!

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  3. Nava, I wanna be up there too! Tried to go on one couple of times in Aust but were cancelled due to weather. Sigh!

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  4. Guess you enojyed a lot in the balloon.Fantastic pictures as well.

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  5. Wow ,I can't take my eyes of hot air balloon,hope u enjoyed it happily,lovely pictures of birds

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  6. I can see you had so much fun in balloon ride...I also liked nature's beauty

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  7. That's adventurous! What a fascinating scene/landscape from the top! Glad you included the birds too! You are one brave girl! Heights scare me!

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  8. OMG such a beautiful place and loved your clicks Navs :)

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  9. wow!exciting experience! A worth memory for the life....
    Happy New Year for you and your family!

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  10. the view form balloon is amazing, I have never been in one.

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  11. that's so cool! and that must be so much of a fun. you're so lucky!

    sincerely,
    Najlaa 'Aqilah

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  12. I have been in a hot air balloon above the deserts of Dubai. But this view was breathtaking and awesome. Have been to Turkey before but never tried ballooning there. You inspired me to definitely include it in my itinerary in my next visit there.

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  13. A hot air balloon ride wud be so amazing.. glad u enjoyed & had a great time :)

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  14. Great pics, Hope U enjoyed every part of ur ride . Really amazing and exciting. Thanks for sharing..

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  15. O my God Nava.. i hope you really enjoyed the ride :) i am wishing to be there.. awesome clicks .. look at the natural beauty on earth too <3

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  16. spectacular views captured very well. what an exciting day you must have had !

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  17. Wow being in hot air balloon is flying like a bird. I just loved the experience unlike small planes and helicopter this one has no noise.

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  18. Beautiful pics captured........ U had a lot of fun right.... :) I feel like I too wanna have a balloon ride .....but I'm scared . U r so lucky to get that.... :)

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