Göreme at night is just as beautiful as during the day. Lights are turned on throughout the town and hillside that it looks like fairies are covering the entire town. I simply loved it there. I was sad to leave after 2 days but was looking forward to seeing the famous thermal waters in Pamukkale which was a 7 hour drive away. On the way we stopped at Lake Beysehir which is simply breathtaking. The mountain behind it was enormous and the water was so still. The lake itself was surrounded by parkland which had public ovens that people could use to cook food for a picnic and I could just picture how busy it would be there in summer.
Up to this point I had been surprised with everything Turkey had to offer so when we got to Pamukkale I was super excited to be able to see the thermal waters there. When you go somewhere and the main feature is the water it’s hard to not be disappointed when you get there and there isn’t any water. Apparently they are working on some repairs there so have stopped the water flowing onto the terraces. It was still a pretty amazing thing to see although we didn’t hang around long and left for our drive to Bodrum.
Bodrum is a beachside town with the nicest people. Everyone there was always willing to help us and we spent our 2 days there wandering around and relaxing. It was nice to be near the beach again and I’m really looking forward to summer now and spending days by the beach. It was here in Bodrum that Mark booked in a game of golf in Antalya for his birthday so I know he was looking forward to the next couple of days going by relatively quickly.
Our next stop after Bodrum was Olympos where we stayed in a treehouse which was pretty cool. The guesthouse itself is quite big and they included breakfast and dinner in our room price. Breakfast is often included in room prices but dinner was a first for us. Eating there felt like we were on school camp, lining up to scoop food onto our plates, secretly wanting to be first so you didn’t miss out on anything. On our second night as I was making up a plate for myself and Mark another couple were in line behind me and I was wondering if they would think I was being greedy by taking so much and I wanted to turn around to ensure them that I was getting food for myself and Mark but I thought was overthinking it. I quietly laughed to myself though as I reached the rice dish and saw there wasn’t much left as they saw it as well and the girl said, much louder than she had been talking, to her partner “ohh there isn’t much rice left, I hope we get some”. This may sound bad but I did scoop an extra spoonful on my plate because of this, after all they hadn’t seen the chef in the kitchen holding a new tray of rice so I knew they would be getting more than they thought.
After a couple of days we left Olympos nice and early so we could reach Lykia Golf Course in time for Mark’s 11:10am tee off. My present to him was not the golf game itself but me walking the entire 18 holes with him. I think he played well. I’m not very good at knowing, especially considering I was often looking at the wrong flag on each hole, wondering why he was hitting it in the completely wrong direction. I always find it funny watching people take golf so seriously, especially all of the etiquette and rules. Sometimes, when it’s really quiet, I just want to say to others there, lighten up a bit, a bit of noise isn’t going to hurt. I don’t think Mark would appreciate me doing that in his presence. I don’t think I’m cut out for golf.
We are at Antalya airport as I write this with an absolutely ridiculous sunglasses tan from walking around all day. I’m so glad we drove through Turkey as we saw so much of the country that we wouldn’t have been able to if we had flown everywhere. We also were able to listen to hours of songs from our iPods – songs we hadn’t listened to in years. It was roughly about 21 hours of music, over 1700kms. I’m looking forward to what Istanbul has to offer and of course being at Gallipoli for the ANZAC Day Dawn Service. It will be a once in a lifetime-type of experience.