Pamukkale is an unusual site, where mineral deposits brought by water have created terraces.

On top of the hill there is the ancient Greek/Roman/Byzantine city of Hierapolis. This is a thermal water pool. Inside there are various pieces of stone, once part of a larger structure.

The most impressive structure is the theater. Well preserved and partially rebuilt using the old pieces.

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Antalya & Olympos

Although acclaimed by many beach going tourists, Antalya doesn’t have too much to offer… apart from the sea side and the shopping areas. There is an old part of the city and a fort, but that was not enough to keep us there for more than a few hours.

As opposed to the crowded Antalya, the quiet beach in Olympos (90km to the South) seemed like a better place to chill.

Olympos has ruins dating from Greek and Roman times until it’s abandonment, in the XV century. While some areas have been cleaned, most of the ruins have been left in the middle of the vegetation, adding a note of mystery to the scene.

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In the middle of Ankara we found this citadel, on top of a hill. It is the oldest part of the city, build during the Roman times.
Some of the stones were reused at a late time, when the fort was modified by the Ottomans.
Not too far is the Museum of Anatolian civilizations, featuring a nice colection of pieces collected from all over the country.
Also narby we found the ruins of the a Roman bath house. They were recently discovered.
This is the house of the first Parliament of the Turkish Republic. From this office, Mustafa Ataturk oragnized the radical changes that followed the dissoution of the Otoman Empire.
This is Anitkabir, the mausoleum of Mustafa Ataturk. In the basemint there is a very interesting museum about the Turkish independence war and the reforms that followed, meant to change the obsolete laws and customs of the Ottoman empire.
Near the TCDD railway station I found this open air exhibit. Full photo archive here.
Maintenance work on Palomina: fresh oil, new rear light bulb, patched one mirror, replaced rear tire (purchased in Calcultta; hard to find one in Ankara so I had to order it from Istanbul) and front wheel bearings (OEM SKF lasted 23,000km). The shop was accessible in a very unusual way. I climbed under power but I decided to let the staff bring her down, as it was kinda slippery.

Also this shop had no motorcycle enigne oil. I sent them shopping but they kept bringing car oil. In the end I accepted to put the car oil. The next day, just as I was wondering what could be the effect on my clutch if I was to keep that oil until Bucharest, we met some local bikers. Hearing about our problem, they gave us 2 liters of Lukoil bike oil for free. Thanks again, guys!

We stayed for 4 nights at Muhammed in Ankara. Thanks again for that, and also for helping organize the bike repairs!

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Sinan Pasa, Bayazid and their attacks against the Romanian medieval countries: that’s – pretty much – what we learn in schools about the Turkish people and their country. But such wonders as Cappadocia are not even mentioned!

This place is one of the most unusual we ever found. The soft rock allowed inhabitants to excavate numerous houses, churches and storage areas. While some are above ground, many are underground, forming huge cities (8 levels deep), usually mirroring the city above ground. It resembles Kandovan and Vinh Moc, but on a much bigger scale. Probably because of the soft soil, the rooms are not as large and decorated as the ones at Ellora Caves.

Unexpected was also the super exciting and very scenic off road track available. At some point the track went even inside a series of caves! 3 hours of punishing Palomina came at the cost of one rear view mirror and one turning signal indicator.

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Nemrut Mountain

On top of the Nemrut Mountain there is a group of statues and other archaeological artifacts dating from I century BC. Apart from that, the view was very spectacular (at 2134m elevation).

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