A horse walks into a bar…
If you‘ve been following me on Facebook, you already know me a bit. And some of you might ask: „Why are you so bloody pessimistic? Why do you have to swear so much? Why do you have such a bad temper? Why do you drag everything and everyone through the mire? Why is there so much sarcasm in your articles?” Well, in this article I’ll try to explain all that, because, in the end, I am not pessimistic at all, I don’t hate the universe, humanity, or, you.
Through the Plain towards PamukkaleAfter leaving the Mediterranean we headed east on a straight and almost flat road. Our next destination was Pamukkale. We passed the ruins of Efesos without entering the ancient city. The fee to get in was probably exorbitant anyway and I had no knowledge of the city’s history. A visit would have been nothing more but strolling among some old stones.
After Efeler we turned south for a few kilometers to get away from the heavy traffic of the main road, then headed east again, onto a smaller sidetrack that ran along the base of the mountains delimiting the plain we were riding through. Riding here instead of the truck-infested four lane trunk road was far more rewarding.
Izmir Sightseeing with Sencer
The metropolitan area of Izmir is situated on the shores of a large bay that reaches almost fifty kilometres inland and is surrounded on all sides by high mountains. All along the flat shoreline and lining the lower slopes of the mountains air-conditioned multi-storey buildings dominate the townscape. In contrast to Istanbul, where almost every square inch of soil was covered by concrete and tarmac, its narrow streets clogged with heavy traffic, Izmir had a lot more open space along the shoreline. The whole city was criss-crossed by wide boulevards and dotted with parks.
This Route is the BestAfter we had been riding through landscapes dominated by farmland and hills with olive groves on them, today was the first time we had to climb a longer slope. On our way to the first little mountain pass of the tour, an attentive Turkish man stopped his vehicle and felt the urge to explain the correct route to us. What Turkish people (amongst many others) fail to notice is, that we had already planned a route and knew exactly where we were going. They were also oblivious to the fact that cyclists preferred different types of roads and terrain than drivers of cars or lorries. Roads that are impassable for them might be just perfect for us and a wide, well paved highway that you can rush your car on at high speed are one of our worst nightmares.
If your have read the first two articles (Start in Istanbul and Wild Trips through Istanbul), written by Malte, you have learned that our trip began in a rather turbulent way. As a master of procrastination I managed to put off all preparations until it became almost impossible to sort everything out before our departure. The bikes were ready to ride except for some small details like mudguards and front racks that were still not attached to the frames.