Day 037 Turkey : Goreme - Antakya

Day 037 Turkey

Trip Distance 472 km (293 m) Total Distance 6199 km (3853 m)
Diesel Costs TL2.40 - TL2.50    
Toll Fees TL7.75    
Stopover
Antakya
Hotel N38.63693 E34.85408 TL70 - Exhausted, tired and grumpy and the wind was HOWLING - we just needed a place to stay.

 

The drive to Antakya was a bit tiring.  We left Kaya Camping this morning once we'd said our goodbyes to everyone and drove into town.  After spending an hour in an internet cafe getting the latest blog entries uploaded (huge files with loads of pics!) and checking the state of our bank accounts (moths fluttered by as we opened them!), we finally set off.

We took the route via Tarsus, Adana & Iskenderun.  Just to let you know that the proposed motorway from Nigde is complete so if you use this route, you pick up the O-21 just before Nigde which goes on to E-90 at Tarsus.  Lunch was at a really rough truck stop in Pozanti but the food was fabulous. They took us into the kitchen to chose our meat which they then grill fresh over an open fire.  Chef had the obligatory fag hanging out of his mouth whilst all of this happened (yes, even the cooking!).  Trevor had his first plate-full of red meat (lamb/sheep/goat) since Greece whilst I had a Chicken Shish Kebab served with the most amazing flat bread.  The bread was grilled on the same fire underneath the meat so that the meat juices had dripped on the bread. YUM YUM.  All served with a local salad and pickled and grilled fresh chillies.  (Ed: Just to let you know that we didn't get any funny tummies even though we probably broke all the "rules" of eating in foreign countries!)

We were originally supposed to go to Kilis to go through the northern border into Syria.  After the GPS gave us a route cutting across from Dortyol on the 31-05 then up the 825-07 to turn onto the 410-02 to Kilis, we checked the paper map (Rough Guide) and sure enough the route was correct.  Or so we thought......  either the 31-05 didn't exist or our fruitless search was in the wrong place.  It turns out that the 31-05 - at least what we thought was the 31-05 - ended up as some dusty old farm track leading into the hills which we followed for a couple of kms before we turned back and decided that we would head onto Antakya and cross into Syria at just passed Reyhanli.  After a further 2 hour drive we arrive in Antakya at 8:30pm with the wind howling and pushing Sully about even at 40kmph so made a decision to check into the first hotel we found.  Turns out (much to our dismay) it was a 5 star hotel but they must have been having a really slow night cause we got 24hour secure parking and B&B for a knock down price - that is after we pleaded poverty and batted our eyes at the lovely manager.

#1 PJ on 5.21.2009 at 12:08 AM

Sounds like your having a real adventure. Well worth all the hard work and preparation. Glad to hear you're not roughing it all the way - enjoy the hotel, back to camping tomorrow! Well done for keeping up the posts, I'd be worn out and too lazy to log on. The ballooning looks fun.

PJ

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Hi PJ, yup the hotel is nice but, to be honest both of us have missed being in Sully  - weird hey?  Anyway we are having a fabulous time.  But why are you up so early??????  Hope everything is going well back home.  Take care Trevor & Jan

#2 dave on 5.23.2009 at 5:31 PM

hi,trev/jan

been reading your adventure hope to do somethink like that my self it looks like your have fun will keep track of you good luck

dave

#3 gary on 5.25.2009 at 1:28 PM

I knew it, GPS are all having a laugh at us behind our backs

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Well it all went to pot in Syria cause the roads on the GPS didn't exist and roads that we we travelling on weren't on the GPS.  I'll update the blog in the next couple of days about our adventures in Syria....