BIKING IN TURKEY

Riding to Turkey and the next day to Kasan, Turkey were 2 of the hardest days. Strong head wind both days. I had to show my passport 4 times to get through the border, plus a 15 euro “fee.”

20131128-173212.jpgTHERE HAD TO BE 50 OR MORE TRUCKS LINED UP WAITING TO CROSS INTO GREECE.
It still amazes me, even after touring 10 countries, that no matter what, when you cross a border, everything changes, it’s like a “different planet.” I ride to Ipsala
I found this great (cheap) hotel. Private room, shared bathroom and good WIFI, $15.

20131128-173646.jpgI COOKED MY BREAKFAST IN THE ROOM AND HAD A GREAT “OFFICE” SET-UP.
I wanted to stay a couple days here. But first I had to investigate taking the bus to Istanbul (200km). No bus for 3 days. I had to ride to KESAN, more headwind, to catch a bus to Istanbul.

20131128-180827.jpg

20131128-180948.jpgI THINK ITS WINTER WHEAT

20131128-181211.jpgKESAN IS THE BACKGROUND IN FRONT OF THE MOUNTAINS.
The route is basically on the “highway”, yet there is a huge shoulder that provides safe bicycling. I ride into town to find a cheap hotel. I pass a place, looks too nice for me. I spend about 2 hours looking around, I’m back at the place I thought I couldn’t afford. What a great place, TASKIN OTEL, (not misspelled) was a great (lucky) choice.

20131128-181803.jpgBELOW THE OTEL WAS THE HIPSTER COFFEE AND DESERT HANGOUT IN KESAN.

20131128-182406.jpgI SOON DISCOVER THAT OTEL’S IN TURKEY INCLUDE A BUFFET BREAKFAST. AT NIGHT THERE ARE NO EMPTY SEATS.
The only restaurants I can find are the DONER KEBEBS. For Lunch and Dinner? I read the travel book and it talks about all the great food in Turkey. Armed with this information I head out on the bike looking for something to eat besides the Doner Kebeb.

20131129-074329.jpgTURKISH PIZZA AND SALAD, (the start of something new)
They were so friendly, I tell them I’ll be back for dinner.

20131129-074558.jpgTHEY BBQ THE MEAT AT THIS END OF THE WOOD FIRED OVEN

20131129-074744.jpgAND PIZZA’S FROM THIS END
I have a renewed faith in Turkish food, not just the deserts from the hotel.

20131129-075028.jpgMETAL RECYCLER USING THE TRANSPORTATION OF THE PAST OR THE FUTURE?

20131129-081112.jpgONE OF THE MANY MANY MOSQUES IN TURKEY
Turkey censors the internet for pornography (I checked). But then the shop right next to my hotel:

20131129-081357.jpgHAD THIS IN THE DISPLAY WINDOW FOR ALL TO SEE?
It’s time to take the bus into Istanbul. The buses are luxury rides, WIFI and

20131129-082407.jpgOO7 ON THE TV AT MY SEAT.
The bus had a camera on the front of the bus and a channel on the TV so you could watch the road. The traffic was crazy, glad I was taking the bus in. The freeway traffic was nearly stopped I look out the window and see this guy trying to sell bananas, on the freeway! I get out of my seat to take the photo out the front bus window, but I glance at the bus cam

20131129-082945.jpgAND TAKE THE PHOTO OF THE BANANA SALESMAN ON MY TV.

20131129-083315.jpgTOP OF A MOSQUE
I’m currently living in Istanbul for a month. The town is divided into the european side, asian side and Taskim. (maybe more?) I’m moving around and living in each part for a week. I’m in the Asian side now. The Hostel I’m staying at rents bikes and a local biker has volunteered to show me around by bike, AWESOME!
THANKS FOR READING
JEFF
NEXT. FIRST FEW DAYS IN ISTANBUL (before Natasa) and some Asian side stuff
MORE PHOTOS ARE HERE

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