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Back in Goris we had a look at some of the many sandstone pillars on the hillsides about the town. A number of these pillars or pinnacles have been excavated to make artificial caves where the inhabitants used to live. We turned east and headed towards the unofficial border with the self proclaimed country of Nagorno Karabakh and passed many more of these pinnacles, large and small many with caves gouged out of them.
Due to Keith's food poisoning on the drive from Glorious Urfa to Midyat, we had skipped two monasteries that were en route. One of them, Mor Gabriel, we still got to visit while in Midyat. The second one, Deyrulzafaran, is situated very close to Mardin, which was our next destination, so we started our day on April 25 (Day 121) by driving to that Syriac Orthodox monastery.
Deryrulzafaran is probably the most famous Syriac Orthodox monastery (although Mor Gabriel ...
... Over breakfast, we concluded we should go all that way. Mardin is popular with tourists, both foreign and domestic. And we wanted a place in the historic section. We found a stone house candidate on booking.com, the Dara Konagi, and booked one night.
It was a beautiful blue sky sunny morning but we didn't have time to linger. We left Malatya at around 9 am. The shortcut off the expressway took us past a pretty lake ...
After breakfast, tea, and goodbyes with Ramazan and Huseyin, we drove to the bus station. Ramazan helped me purchase the least expensive ticket to Mardin, which was conveniently leaving in ten minutes.
The bus drove through the mountains for about two hours, and then up a steep hill for half an hour. I got off of the bus at a bus station that was outside of the Mardin. I was happy, but not at ...
On the road early, at 7.30, following the Tigris east towards Iraq. How good is this (following the famous waterway downstream into the cradle of civilization)? Just out of town we stopped at another Seljuk bridge (the Ten Eyed Bridge built in 1065). The Tigris Valley is broad & productive here despite having been tilled for thousands of years. A very Australian landscape - wide flat fields of ripening wheat & low hills in the distance. Pitstop in the ...