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Travel reports

Hello Turkey! ... snow???

In Yazd (Iran) we got to know two other overlandes who told us a scary story after which they used to have lots of trouble with the kurds in the southeastern region of Turkey. With this in mind and still not knowing the cause of the roar of our car we went pretty directly through the east of Turkey towards the central regions.

Snow-covered mountians
Mount Ararat
Partly snow-covered roads
Central Anatolia
Speed limit
Kaymakli caves

Here in Turkey, we should now always be able to appreciate two-lane roads. We drove pst Turkeys highest mountain - Mount Ararat with its mentionable 5137 metres - which was almost entirely covered by clouds and the environment showed more and more snow. In two nights we were driving in a snowstorm on initially white roads. Fortunately our tires showed good grip and sleeping in the car (due to overpriced accommodation everywhere in the country) was still OK despite the cold.

While fuel in Iran did cost the equal of about 0.3 $US per litre, we were now faced with prices ranging from 2.06 $US/litre up to 2.28 $US/litre. Probably these will be the highest petrol prices on our entire trip from Austrlia to Germany. While Iran most of the time showed a lack of gas stations (it sometimes really took us a while until we actually found a petrol station) Turkey shows an excessive supply of the same. In some places, three to four different gas stations are placed along a distance of a quarter of a mile. Our desired destination in central Turkey was Cappadocia, specifically the area around the small town of Göreme.
After a visit to the underground city of Kaymakli (caves), which have been served different people as place of refuge / hideout for millennia already, we enjoyed the view over the landscape at Uchisar Castle.
We quickly realized the fact of having arrived in a tourist region: there were many other strangers. Surprisingly many East Asians were seen, at one point or another we heard German, and Georgians were to be found here, too.
The most characteristic feature of Cappadocia are the numerous conical or tower-shaped rocks. These are volcanic tuffs that got their unusual shape by strong steady erosion.
During the past centuries human built caves and living spaces inside the rocks which partly are still in use today (mainly for tourism purposes).

After 'dry' India, Pakistan and Iran, here we treated ourselves with a Raki, the first alcoholic drink for a long time. Nadine's face had lit up like a red traffic light.

Kaymakli caves
Uchisar Castle
Uchisar Castle
Uchisar Castle
Overlooking Goereme
Overlooking Goereme
Overlooking Göreme
Uchisar Castle

The roar from our Mitsubishi grew louder and more frequent during the last kilometers which due to a major concern of impending failures made driving not just relaxing. Our plan therefore: get to Istanbul and give the car to the a Mitsubishi mechanic. An oil change as well as replacing the piece of soot in our car called 'air filter' with a new one was due anyway.

However, before would reach Istanbul and the Bosphorus, which would be equivalent to a farewell to Asia, the Turkish gendarmerie one evening would tear us from sleep...