As regular readers of this blog might have noticed, I have not been regular with posts for the last 2-3 months and that can be attributed to a small issue with the Macbook browser and a combination of other factors! Now that I have figured other stuff, I will be back with my regular blogposts and also pen down past travel experiences and share photo stories. Today, I randomly stumbled upon photographs from the 2019 trip to Turkey and wanted to make a photo story of all the delightful travel memories that get better with passing time as they are laced with generous doses of nostalgia!
We landed in Istanbul and travelled across Turkey to places like Trabzon, Van, Gaziantep, Izmir, Selçuk, Antalya and traversed across numerous towns and villages in the Turkish countryside. If you are planning a trip to Turkey, here are the links for the posts.
Istanbul : Tips for Backpacking
Trabzon : Travels on the Black Sea Coast
Van : A City of All Day Breakfasts
Gaziantep : UNESCO approved eating! Photographs and Memories from Travels across Turkey
Steamed corn and corn on cob is likely to be your first tryst in Istanbul and Turkey.
Turkey is a vast country and a number of regions grow a variety of olives.
Overnight buses across Turkey are supremely comfortable and one can see memorable sunrise(s) & sunset(s) from the window.
Gözleme is the Turkish version of an Indian parantha (if you please!) and is a safe choice on the road.
Stay at a heritage homestay – Accommodation in the big towns in Turkey is top notch.
Best to bring your bottle of wine and enjoy as every restaurant/café has matching glasses!
A kind restaurant owner in Trabzon serves us complimentary dal soup (Çorba) upon knowing we are from Hindistan – India.
Freshly baked Simit could be an endearing memory of a trip to Turkey.
Historic staying place in Trabzon.
Trabzon has certainly the best pide (sort of simple pizza) in all of Turkey.
Autumn is a great time to explore Turkey – as its shoulder season.
Ekmek – Trabzon bread is most sought after.
Thats Pide; to wash down with black tea.
Kind strangers had letting us know their secret spots that only the locals know!
Kestane – I really miss roasted chestnuts available in plentiful across Turkey.
Turkish locals love to sit in open spaces and parks through the day.
At the time of this trip, 1 Turkish Lira was roughly about INR 12-14.
Nargis or narcissus or daffodils are commonly sold on pavements in all cities in Turkey.
Helva with Turkish coffee in Trabzon.
Chestnuts for such a reasonable price!
Ginger in Turkey is excellent.
Walnuts grow in aplenty in Turkey.
Sitting space in the heritage hotel in Trabzon.
Bird’s eye view of the industrial town of Trabzon.
A delicacy from the Black Sea region.
Oranges grown in Rize province are sold at a very reasonable price and are excellent quality.
Street vegetable market in Trabzon.
Leeks so good, and the variety of fresh veggies is staggering.
Strange looking tomatoes.
Lettuce on a cart.
Trabzon bread is highly sought after.
We bought top class dried figs and dried mulberries from this shop at a fraction of the price in India.
Güle Güle means bye bye in Turkish.
Yummy apples locally grown in Turkey.
Staggering variety of honey and vinegar at the market.
Butter, cheese, peynir and other kinds of milk products.
Café outside a historical monument.
Ertugrul pide in Trabzon.
Fragrant nargis flowers.
For a while I wondered if it was possible to buy and carry these cute stools to India!
The Turkish cāy tray.
Artisan at work in the shop-cum-studio.
Bedestan – Underground market in Trabzon.
Authentic Haman is a totally different experience than the commercial ones in Istanbul!
Beds to lie in the hamami.
Live music in Trabzon square just before we caught the bus to Van.
Our first taste of complimentary baklava.
Trabzon to Van by Metro bus.
Fascinating to see the tandoor / bukhari in the Kåmil Koç office in Van.
First glimpse of a breakfast platter in Van.
Cute local buses ply in Van city.
Van is located close to the Iran border and has a rich tradition of tandoor breads like naan, lavash and many more.
I kept wondering what these breads would taste like…
Pide available for sale.
Dates and raisins for sale in Van.
Stunningly beautiful mosque spotted in Van.
3 TL Lahmaçun bread – Definitely the cheapest meal in Turkey.
A moment of delight to see this lane on a random walk.
Honey sellers are everywhere, at least in Van.
Mosques are called Camii in Turkish.
These cute minibuses in Van are a good mode of transport to go around the town.
Van Castle towering above us.
Non-existent entrance to Van Castle.
Climb up the Van Castle to get some glorious evening views.
A visiting Iranian family from Tehran invited us for a round of drinks and cake in a park.
This scene reminded me of Ladakh in winter with the tall poplars bereft of leaves and barely surviving!
Hosgeldiniz means welcome in Turkish.
Peynir, cheese and cheese from Kars for sale.
Bollywood is everywhere!
Market scene in Van, Turkey.
Typical breakfast spread.
Lavish sitting space in the 140 TL hotel!
Headed to Akdamar Island Church and blessed with a view like this.
No ferry to Akdamar from Edremit.
Waiting for passengers to fill the ferry but nobody ever came!
We had to be content with the view from afar.
When you wait, you experiment!
Waiting for a return ride back to Van.
A small çay restaurant for the poor migrants and immigrants from different countries.
Juicy and ripe persimmons being sold by the kilo.
Simit selling is serious business.
Full pleasure of the real breakfast of Van!
Not so good bus experience.
Gaziantep in early morning light.
Only this çay café was open before we could find a hotel or homestay.
Turkey has a rich tradition of making copper utensils.
Cosy stay at a family run heritage hotel in Gaziantep.
A beautiful sight at every corner.
Found this place too overpriced.
Mass manufactured bags for cheap prices.
Yesemek served traditional vegetarian foods.
Excellent taste and quite reasonable.
In comparison, I liked these bags more than the other ones.
Handmade leather footwear being made and sold.
Bakircilar = Coppersmiths…
The copper bazaar is a treasure heaven.
This is a nice set.
Spices for sale in old Gaziantep bazaar.
He claimed to have made this himself.
Turkish çezve for making coffee.
Locals making us taste pistachios which we later ended up buying!
Unique coffee in Gaziantep.
Gaziantep’s spice market is a sensory delight.
If baklava excites you, then Gaziantep must be on your visit list – everywhere else is just not right!
In search of the best baklava.
Fistikli baklava – pistachio baklava.
I think he said he was originally from Syria.
A 400 year old coffee shop!
Typical breakfast platter in Turkey.
Leather bags were very expensive.
Çay is a lifeline in Turkey.
Roasted chestnuts are so tasty.
UNESCO World gastronomy city – Gaziantep.
Pistachio desserts …
Kutnu weaving is high quality weaves.
An underground market in Gaziantep.
The best baklava in Gaziantep.
Heritage homestay in the old city of Gaziantep.
Bakircilar carsisi – Coppersmiths bazaar.
Souvenir shopping for mirrors.
Complimentary serving of baklava!
Painted ceiling of our stay.
Heritage building for homestay.
Cat waiting to enter the house.
Gaziantep was cold in the rain.
Rainy and cold morning …
Another baklava place.
Treasure trove for shopping.
Small bags for 10 TL each.
Kutnu weaving bags.
Handmade soaps in Gaziantep.
Also called Antep by locals.
Tourist favourite café full of antique delights.
Old world charm in the nameless streets of Gaziantep.
The minaret and the tree.
Antalya is a vibrant city.
Popular among tourists.
Highly priced souvenirs.
Anatolian carpets, pottery, ceramics and other knick-knacks.
Old town of Antalya is primed for tourism.
Mesmerising evening light and mellow cold even in December.
Nice to walk around.
Cafés at every turn.
Open air restaurant in Antalya.
Sunset at Antalya marina.
Cat on a café table!
Sunsets are charming in Antalya.
Mix of old and the new.
Extremely pricey tourist traps – Antalya.
Antalya marina in the day.
Wish I had bought these.
Circus and jokers!
Another pretty café.
Strawberries on a cart for sale.
Step in a by-lane and find an old building.
Sip wine with this view at one of the numerous eateries at Antalya Marina.
Spot the moon.
Time for celebration.
Great place to have beer and chill : Nobody in Turkey minds that anywhere.
A very cold and snowy welcome to Konya.
Overcast day in Konya.
Can you see the dazzling turquoise dome?
Pre-wedding shoot scenes.
Kunefe and cay – breakfast in Konya as we started the day.
Unforgettable sema performance of the whirling dervishes.
A carpet worth a million.
Goodbye to Konya with the night bus to Izmir.
Nargis flowers, anyone?! For 10 TL a bunch.
Calligraphy souvenir shop.
Cute stuff : Personalised on order.
Simit being sold on the cart.
mmmmm, yummy chestnuts.
Best place for authentic local food in Izmir, at very economical prices.
Basmane Gar – Historic train station in Izmir.
Train from Izmir to Selçuk.
The simit selling carts are very cute and distinctly identifiable from afar.
31st December, decked up for the party.
Homestay in Izmir.
Selcuk to Sirince.
Very very pretty souvenirs.
An old lady was making these dolls.
Gorgeous homestay in Sirince.
Širince village has a Greek past and still resembles an idyllic Greek village setting.
Sirince is a tourist delight.
Felted wool reminded me of our own namda.
Same stuff in Gaziantep was at 1/3 the price.
Pide for dinner, best place in Izmir.
Dinner setup at the homestay.
Souvenir shop on the way to Ephesus.
Wall plates, exquisite craftsmanship.
Complimentary salads with meal.
On Istiklal Caddesi street in Istanbul before the return flight to India.
It was as if the weather gods were creating the perfect evening for us in Istanbul.
Loving the explorations.
Night time is when Istanbul really comes to life.
Princes’ Islands trip.
Visited Buyukada and one more island.
The boat ride to the Princes’ Islands is super comfortable and a must do in Istanbul.
Finally stepped into the overpriced spice market in Istanbul.
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