6 Month Anniversary!!!
Trip Start May 22, 2009
197Trip End Feb 16, 2010
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Started the day off with a package tour. This was a great change. A whole itinerary of places to see without any of the hassles of trying to arrange transportation and other logistics ourselves. It was just a 'come along for the ride' type of day.
Then it was off to Derinkuyu. Here is where an underground city is open to the public. It's estimated that there could be over 100 underground cities in this area although only about 30 have been discovered. This particular city was discovered by a farmer who noticed the remains of what he thought was a well in his field. Ignoring it for a long time, he began to notice that it wasn't a well at all, but a ventilation shaft leading down into the city.
We walked down through 8 different levels to 60 meters below the surface of the ground. What
These cities are elaborate series of tunnles and rooms for living in, but also for security. Christians used this area during the years of persecution from the Romans in the 400's AD. Water systems, ventalation shafts, kitchens, winery, food storage areas, security doors, meeting rooms, churches, and even morgues!
Since security was a main concern, tiny little doorways and passages made traversing difficult on purpose. They even installed little holes in the tops of tunnles where they could drop hot oil down onto the enemy. Even special stone doors could be rolled in place to block passage.
Staying at a constant temperature of around 7-15 degrees Celsius, it is the perfect place to stay cool in summer and stay warm in winter. Many passageways went up into nearby homes and was only used as a retreat when needed.
Off to Selime Monestary. (One of the great things about package tours is that you get to see a lot in a short period of time, the negative is that you're a bit rushed and feel like cattle being herded). This monestary is looming up on a hill with many many rooms carved out of the rock. Over the years, freezing rain and snow have caused sections to break off, so now you can see
Full day, but still lots of time for a full night. Brian and I signed up for 'Turkish Nights' an evening show of all you can eat food, all you can drink alcohol, and more than you can take dance. All throughout the evening groups in various regional costumes come out and do their traditional dances. There was even a display of the whirling dervishes and some belly dancing!
Afterwards, we went to the Flintstones Cave Bar and lived it up some more. Brian turned into a dancing machine. He hasn't done this since Andrew's wedding. A few people there remembered him from the show and wanted to dance with him which was a laugh. I just sat back and watched and sucked on my nargila.
Had a lot of fun and felt younger than we have in quite some time. Not intensive travel, but nice for a change and fun to get together with some other travelers.