A Travellerspoint blog

Cove and the horse

Gallipoli, Çanakkale and Troy,

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So I’ve been a bit slack in updating trips so before we head into Ireland just a quick post from a 2 day trip to Gallipoli and the Troy ruins when we were in Turkey in June.

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And a bit of troy

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Posted by jamienrach 10:39 Archived in Turkey Comments (0)

The Loudness

Istanbul

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It was a bit of a mission getting to Istanbul from Naxos; 6hr ferry, 2 hours on Athens underground, 16 person rickety plane to Istanbul then another hour on the Istanbul metro’s.

Still, we got there in the end and after a sleep and our nine lax days in the Greek isalands we were keen for a bit of speed touristing. So out in the Turkish heat we went a had a peruse of the Blue Mosque, Agia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, Grand Bazzar as well as other random spot around the city.

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Sitting in the Blue Mosque

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Agia Sophia was easily our no.1 tourist attraction, and yet we seemed to have the place all to ourselves.

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It use to be some sort of Christian church which the Muslims plastered over and put up all there own art. Now it’s uncovered and so weird to see Islamic art next to Christian Mosaics.

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Basilica Cistern was a close second, big underground aqueduct right beneath the main city streets. We didn’t even know it was there just kinda stumbled in.

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Grand Bazzar = manic

We then left Istanbul and went for a 2 day tour around Anzac cove and the Troy ruins (see next post), but then returned to Istanbul for another two days. We deiced to branch out from the Sultanahmet / old town area and explore how modern day turks live in the city.

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So over the bosphous and went for a huge walk around modern Istanbul. Still lots of mosques and other buildings but otherwise it could be mistaken for a lot of other mainland Europe cities, highlight was the modern art museum (big thumbs up).

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Oh little Turkish tea how I will miss you

Posted by jamienrach 09:26 Archived in Turkey Comments (1)

Aint life a beach

Naxos lay-a-bout

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Since we’d crammed the tripping around Naxos into the first day and a half with Olly and his GF we had a good 4 days to just lax out and soak the rays

Our days consisted primarily of

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Getting up in the morning strolling out (the big 10m walk) to the beach and having a swim over to the rocks

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Sitting out in the sun reading a book, writing postcards or just having a nap

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Dragging ourselves back up and off to another close by beach for some more lay-abouts,

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A game of beach mancala

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Or another dip and some snorkeling


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Then some dinner and back out to a beach for a stroll

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And the now obligatory jumping around wherever we are photos

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Posted by jamienrach 13:05 Archived in Greece Comments (1)

Naxos Tripping

who'd know you'd be here

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We were just about to get on the ferry from Tinos to Naxos but we decided to check emails before we hopped on. Lucky we did as there was an email from a mate who I worked with in NZ saying that he and his girlfriend were going to be on Naxos around the same time as us and we should drop him a line.

So thinking we’d get off the boat and have to do a bit of searching to find them, we were pleasantly surprised to find a welcoming party waiting for us at the port. It wasn’t really that hard to see them as Olly was the only redhead in the mass of people.

Their plan was to hire a car for a day and trip around the ancient sights of Naxos. As this was something we were gonna do at some point anyway we were keen as to jump on board.

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Some old temple remains

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Walkabout to find a tower and church……… which we didn’t find

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Hot and sweaty walk up Mt Zeus to a nice cool cave

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Startings of statues that were left to time after being broken in transport from mountain to town

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Apollonas town, where we ran out of petrol, still 30ks and 1 hour away from the ferry the guys had to catch in the main town

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Naxos main town

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Alone again, time to get down to the serious business of sitting on a beach and snorkeling around rocks.

Posted by jamienrach 12:17 Archived in Greece Comments (0)

Isle of the winds

Tinos, Greece

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So we were on the ferry from Athens, and after a quick stop of in Syros we arrived in Tinos.

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Hello syros, goodbye syros.

The Tinos main town is pretty cool, yet another Venetian town, winding cobbled streets and alleyways up to the church on top of the township. Because we arrived on a Saturday we were one of the only touristy types there as all the Greeks pilgrimage out on the weekend to come to the top church.

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The old ladies crawl their way to the main church from the gates as they enter, on holy days they crawl the whole street (must have been about 700m).

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Room with a view

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Our first full day in Tinos and we decided (because there was a slight breeze) that we’d tackle one of the old donkey paths that are still maintained on the island. We went from the main town and went up up up to another small village (Kitikados)

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So weird that in the middle of the island, surrounded by mountains are little outposts scattered everywhere, still inhabited and working as they did hundreds of years ago

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When we were in Kitikados, church must have just been getting out as lot of geeks in their Sunday best were passing us heading back down to the small main square. Then out of nowhere as we were walking under a balcony a man pulls out an elephant gun and starts shooting off into the distance. Rachel still maintains it was a shotgun wedding.

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Anyway from Kitikados, we headed on to a beach we saw down a valley. And to a much deserved swim.

Our next day in Tinos and we were ready to really start seeing the island and the island was really ready to show us what it could do.
So we hired a scooter and decided to go to the furthest and least visited beach we could go to. What should have been a quick 40 min trip was elongated by the 50cc scooter having to battle up steep mountain roads with two people and massive head winds.
Oh my goodness the winds, it was insane the ferocity of the gusts that would blow around the scooter and almost throw us off line. Not to mention the max speed of 20km and hour we’d get into the head wind.


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We eventually made it to Livida Bay, and it was totally worth it as there was not a soul around but us.


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Yes we do like to jump around

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The only upside of the winds is that they whipped up some waves to have a bit of a play around in

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The next few days were dominated by the winds as they increased and made it a bit uncomfortable to go to any of the main exposed beaches. We did go out for another scooter ride to find a sheltered bay (unsuccessfully) and had to turn back to one we had seen right at the start of the ride. But at least it got the adrenaline going.

Anyway we were told by some locals that the winds were pretty specific to the group of islands close by Tinos, Syors and sometimes Mykynos. So we were pretty keen to head onto our next island Naxos.

Posted by jamienrach 03:09 Archived in Greece Comments (0)

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