Saturday, November 24, 2012

Bits and pieces of Turkey

The Blue Mosque

Prayer Wall at the House of Virgin Mary, Ephesus. May wishes come true, including mine:)
Olives - good for health!

Happened upon this couple and their son celebrating Hari Korban (Feast of Sacrifice). 
Hot air balloon ride 

Evening out at a restaurant - Turkish  traditional dance folk

Belly dancing to cap the evening's entertainment
Topkapi Palace, Istanbul  - was the residence of the Ottoman sultans for  approx. 400 years

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Think cotton and white it is! From far, the image is like a snowy mountain. We were thrilled to visit Pamukkale which means 'Cotton Castle' in Turkish. They tag it as the 8th Wonder of the World and is awarded the status of  an UNESCO  world heritage site. It is really wondrous to experience Pamukkale, one of a kind attraction. It is also the site of the ancient city of Hierapolis.

The terraces of carbonate mineral left by the flowing thermal water  has created a truly unique attraction. Walking on the travertine, a sedimentary rock deposited by water from the hot springs is a little rough and grainy. In fact, that helps to keep us firm though parts especially in the pools can be slippery. Wearing shoes is prohibited to protect the deposits. However we were advised by our guide to keep our shoes with us, in case we can't find them upon our return!

The sculptured basins of mineral water is really outstanding. Look out for the hanging limestone walls, admire the cascading thermal water which gather to form pools and terraces. We walked in a couple of  pools and the water was comfortable and warm. The sun began to set and the glow and shadows cast was beautiful.

What did we leave behind - our footprints and took home lovely memories :)

Watch :

You will enjoy more. Do visit this natural wonder!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Trojan Horse

Our tour guide, Orzu informed us that we were making a short detour to view the horse that was used in the 2004 movie TROY. A handsome horse indeed! It stands at the seafront of Cannakale. But the movie was not filmed in Troy ( Truva in Turkish). As in the movie,when Priam, King of Troy chose to listen to the priests who saw the horse as an offering to Poseidon, God of the Sea and a gift, he ignored the misgivings of Prince Paris, who protested vehemently, 'Father, burn it!'. The short -lived happiness was the downfall of Troy. While Troy  was asleep, Greek soldiers came out of the hollowed out wooden  horse and with their other counterparts attacked the city.

The Trojan Horse at Cannakale - gift to Turkey from Brad Pitt who acted as Achilles, the main protagonist  in the epic movie, TROY

The Trojan Horse at the Ancient City of Troy
My friends waved and called out, 'Helen!' ha! ha! - me, the face that launched a thousand ships ???
Which horse do you prefer? - this or the one used in the movie TROY

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Cave House Hospitality

Am back from a 10 day tour in Turkey. It was wonderful and am so lucky to be able to enjoy the country - culturally rich, both  modern and traditional. Have to admit we had a full itinerary , thus hectic is an understatement!

 Our tour companions were close friends and friends of friends - all 24 of us. The magic of Cappadocia, especially the hot air balloon ride will always be remembered. A visit to the Ephesus is also a must! Our guide, Orzu, held us together like true glue with her professionalism and not forgetting her loud, throaty laughter!

 So much to relate about Turkey but in one word - unforgettable. Below, we visited a family who lives in a cave house. Cave houses are government owned and rented out to locals. It was a fascinating to experience the hospitality.

The hospitable couple and their 3 children live in this cave house. The man of the house carves homes out of caves as his occupation whilst his wife retains her role as a homemaker. 

A carpet loom in the background.A homemaker,our hostess is a craftswoman  indulging in lace and bead work which she sells as scarfs.

The 9 year old  learning how to receive guests - he served us sweets. His father served us Turkish tea.

Carpets cover the floor of the cave. Turkey is known for this woven industry.

A special pose for the album:)

Part of the kitchen 

We were attracted to the doily lacework . 

Scarfs with bead work for sale too.

Down the steps to the courtyard in front of the house.

An attractive feature  leading to the steps of the house. Ceramic pigeons perched on poles to denote  the Pigeon Valley we were in.  These are erected by the council.