Travel Day – Göreme to Bodrum

Travel Day – Göreme to Bodrum

The wind picked up again this morning so no hot air balloons today. We spent the morning packing up for our airport shuttle pickup @ 8:25AM. After settling the bill, Ramezan, the hotel owner, advised Mustafa, one of the staff, to gift us a hand made (by Ramezan) ceramic plate of our choice.

Ramezan is actually a ceramic maker by training, and later got into the hotel business.

Speaking of bill – interesting thing is that the hot air balloon ride used to be €160 per person based on the 2019 Fodor’s guide book, but the price decreased to €150 this year, and for some reason we got a discount of €20 per person. So we ended up paying $150 (a third of Africa’s hot air balloon price tag). I suspect the prices went down because of the significant drop in tourism – the law of supply and demand. To be quite honest, traveling nowadays is so much more pleasant. There are no longer any crowds, and prices have come down to earth from the lack of competition.

The trip to the airport took an hour. The Kayseri Airport is much smaller.

Security screening leading to the gates is on the left. The ticket counter is on the right.

The hour packed flight got us to Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen Airport (one of the 3 Istanbul airports) in time for lunch in the lounge before our connecting flight onward to Bodrum.

Lunch wasn’t anything to write home about. I joked with Joe that even the dogs in Cafayate wouldn’t eat the bread (when we were in Cafayate in 2010, a dog had stationed itself in front of a steak house waiting for some tasty morsels of steak. When a tourist tossed a piece of bread at it, it just sniffed and stared back with an accusatory look “don’t insult me woman!”).
However, I love their No Touch coffee machine. Just wave your hand in front of your coffee choice. I’d end up drinking coffee all day long if I had a machine like this at home.
Busier airport.

Some views of Turkey from the plane…

Busy shipping region in the Sea of Marmara off Istanbul
Princes Islands. The largest is Büyükada, which we had visited during our stay in Istanbul.
The Turks take their evil eye seriously. Check out the evil eye that you can see from the plane.
Saw these circular objects off the coast of Bodrum. Not sure what they are, and I’ve asked a local who doesn’t seem to know either. I suspect these may be fisheries, but will need to confirm that.

Fifty minutes later, we were in Bodrum. We took the Havas bus for 23TL each.

Time from the airport to city bus terminal took 40 minutes. From there we walked 15 minutes to get to our Airbnb.

But this was the saving grace. Washer – THE most important thing to have available when you’re on an extended vacation.
Went to Kalamare for dinner based on Fodor’s recommendation. Note to self, don’t use Fodor’s for food recommendation.

We are excited to be in a region that has fresh seafood after 3 weeks of meat dishes.

The whole area is so quaint and colorful. The color schematics remind us more of Greece, which isn’t hard to believe given how close the Greek islands are from Bodrum. You can just take a ferry to one of the Greek Islands like Kos or Rhodes. If it weren’t for the fact that Americans are banned from Greece, we would make a side trip in a heartbeat.

We were looking for a dessert place and stumbled upon Yunuslar Karadeniz.

This is what caught my eye – San Sebastian Cheesecake

It looked interesting, and I was up to trying any kind of cheesecake since it is my drug of choice. This originated in San Sebastian in the Basque area, and is much more gooey than the firm NY style cheesecake.

Verdict? Hands down 100% better than NY style cheesecake. It is so good that I’ve already looked up and sent Joe the recipe. This is the first item on the “honey do” list when we return home. The plan is to hit this joint daily while we’re here in Bodrum.

Just as we had left the patisserie, it started to rain and we were caught in a downpour. As we were trying to keep ourselves dry, one of the young shopkeepers told us to wait it out in his shop. One thing I have found about the Turks is that they are one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet, and we have been on the receiving end of their generosity numerous times since we’ve been in Turkey.

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