Sunday, 22 August 2010
Mad Dogs and Englishmen
It was hot. Absolutely scorching hot with the temperature hitting 53 Centigrade at the hottest part of the two weeks. It was as much as we could do to drag ourselves to the pool or the beach for the most part and any thoughts about long and leisurely exploration of any of the sites of historical interest in the area (more of which later) were firmly kicked into touch!
I won't go into finite detail of the trip but suffice it to say we had a fantastic time and I managed to get a few things done - not least of which the next instalment of The Sword in the Sand which I am hoping to have ready over the next few days and will post accordingly when ready.
Highlights of the tour included a drive by of Tlos - the capital of the ancient Lycians (including some fantastic rock tombs - not unlike a mini version of Petra in Jordan), a walk along the spectacular Saklikent Gorge (the mountain stream running through it was refreshingly cold!) and mountains. Lots of mountains - little wonder as we were on the edge of the Taurus range. It seemed a little odd to be surrounded by conifers and Mediterranean blue sea with 45 degree plus heat! We tried the mud baths which were great fun and I had a superb shave at a Turkish Barbers which is a real treat and I would recommend it to anyone visiting Turkey.
The blue lagoon of Olu Deniz was absolutely stunning and we spent a number of days on the various private beaches just messing about in the water, feeding the fish and soaking up the rays.
Food wise we ate three times our bodyweight in Meze with grilled meats and this was wonderful (any pangs of guilt felt by such indulgence were offset by the healthy nature of the diet - not so much 5 a day, more like 10!) - I probably also consumed a small tanker full of Efes beer as well although this was purely to keep the fluid levels up! Pide is the Turkish version of a pizza and these are really tasty - they tend to not have the cheese element and are a cheap and filling snack.
Olu Deniz is also a major centre for paragliding and although I did not have a go at this it was incredible watching them literally floating over our heads - at one point I counted 20 in the air at once. It did however, give me an idea for a Victorian Science Fiction Turkish air assault unit...................;-)