Selimiye Tasodalar Hotel
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Before heading back to Istanbul, I decided to make one finial stop in Turkey. After some research and suggestions from friends, I picked Edirne. It is a small city near the border of Greece and Bulgaria. To get there the bus had to first cross the Marmara sea in a ferry and then drive north. It was only about 4 hours to get there, so I had the day to explore.
The people in Edirne are quite nice, but there was next to no English spoken. ...
... border at Giurgiu / Ruse. We paid our bridge toll to cross the Danube and handed old love our passports and car paperwork. 10 minutes later... done, welcome to Bulgaria!
First impressions on the other side... dirtier, less kept, worse roads (but not too bad) and eerily quiet, borderline deserted, with that harsh Soviet feel. As for the language, we thought we were struggling in Romania. Now... no idea!
... again chosen a rarely used border and although it took longer than others, we didn’t have to wait long. The road the other side though was cobbled, which has to rank up there with a headwind as the most unpleasant cycling conditions one can experience. The town of Edirne was a pleasant surprise with one nasty shock. The shock was that we were now in a Muslim country and as a consequence beer was ...
... then, of course, he directed us back to our now infamous, booth 92!
We of course advised him that there wasn't anyone at booth 92, and pretty well were not going to leave him until he phoned to check.
So, back to booth 92. As we approached, and older agent guy kind of lazily got up from the couch in his booth… we were now thinking maybe he was there all the time!
Anyway, 90 Euro later, and a few stampings, and we had our visas.
... But eventually we got out, unscathed, and began our journey to Edirne.
Driving out of Istanbul was pretty hairy - we learned very quickly that lane markings are considered "suggestions" and we assume Turkish people colour outside the lines. Speed limits are suggestions, too. As is any idea that one might observe a "safe" following distance. Between all these distractions and the added confusion over road signs (there was one that cropped up constantly, with ...