Monday, August 20, 2012

Is Turkey the perfect country?

Turkish people are so hospitable.
We really can't exaggerate just how friendly and hospitable everyone was. Almost every time we stopped, we would be approached by someone with gifts of fruit, tea, water, etc, etc. Strangers offered to show us around town or to give us a place to stay overnight - twice we were even given the master bedroom!

Sharing a Ramazan dinner outside a local mosque

Turkey has lots of ancient ruins
From an earlier trip to Turkey, we knew about some impressive Roman ruins like Ephesus. But getting off the tourist trail, we stumbled across many more ruins still being excavated. Since we had them pretty much to ourselves, we could sit in the stadiums or amphitheatres and imagine what they were like in their glory days.

Roman Baths at Aizanoi
Tasty Turkish snacks!
We biked through orchards of ripe figs, peaches, grapes, apricots, plums... You could buy this amazing fresh fruit pretty much anywhere as well as dried fruits and nuts. And in every town, there are street-corner vendors selling simit (a bagel-like Turkish snack) and the bakeries also prepared all sorts of special breads for the Ramazan period. That's right - all this food was available to us to feed our raging cyclist appetites, while most Turkish people were fasting for Ramazan. Thankfully, as travellers and non-Muslims, we never made to feel bad about eating during the fast (even receiving regular gifts of food).

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