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IslanderX

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  1. I have traveled east along D400 several times and I often pass the Snake Castle. To be honest, I have never been up the Snake Castle other than the occassional photos that I have taken from below. One day I was exchanging stories of all the places that I have been to in Turkey in the last 4 months. The small talk has given us both ideas and other places to visit. The fellow explorer told me about a castle nestled just 20 miles north of Ceyhan. It was called Anavarza Castle. From the main highway I saw one sign pointing in the direction of Anavarza then there was nothing else but a hand painted sign pointing to another direction where that turn was that said "Anavarza Kalesi 6 km." This lead me to a very narrow road that stretched in between corn fields and other domestically grown produce. This was a very small farming community. It seems like time stood still here because farming still involved manual labor all arranged in a file. Leaning forward as they tend to their seedlings. Some of the farmers had tractors to plow the fields while others had to use live stock. The rumbling of my motorcycle always draws the curious seekers and a welcoming break from farming just to see what is out there. I try not to let anything pass me by and absorb as much as I can. The narrow road followed along side a small creek which had a few fishermen. About 2 km in I still see no castle but still enjoyed what was laid before me. Then all of the sudden I noticed alot of big blocks of lime stones on both sides of the road. I had to be near, then out of nowhere I see a remnant of an arch way. I know that I am not the first visitor to this parts but to me it was a major discovery, I knew I was heading the right way and that hand painted sign was not a joke. The further in I go the more arches emerge from nowhere. The heavy vegetation prevented me from seeing it until I am right in front of it. 4 km in, I finally see the Anavarza nestled on a hill top. What was laid out below were remnants of pillars and stone walls incorporating all the arches that I have seen prior. This seemed to have been a well developed town back in the biblical times. It was interesting to see that some of the remaining pillars were actually being used by the present farmers to fence in their property. With all the excitement of discovering a historical sight, I still managed to enjoy the little things in life....a camillion, blocking my way strolling very slowly across the road as his eyes revolve around observing my every moves. Finally, that dreaded hike up the hill just to view the castle. Let me remind you that I was not prepared to hike up any mountain. Riding boots were not made for climbing anything other than a motorcycle, but I managed. Its not like me to travel somewhere and not explorer more due to minor incoveniences. I must say, climbing up was murderous. Of course I have alot more photos but I can only post 10 on the forums. Once I get a chance I will have to update my gallery section with Anavarza photos. Well, on the way back out the narrow path, I encountered some heavy traffic conjestion. You know you're in trouble when you don't know who has the right of way? Lessons learned on this trip: - Bring drinks, snack or food and be prepared to use the out doors for your toilet. - Bring hiking boots or something other than walking or riding boots. - Don't have a cow when you get stuck in a traffic jam.
  2. On another one of my weekend adventure I and a couple of friends decided to take a trip. Not knowing where to go we decided to check out Gaziantep, which was about 2 hours east of Adana. A trip that could be easily done in one day which is what we were looking for. The bad thing is we went on a Sunday which meant alot of the shops were closed. We didn't care, we just wanted to explore and get out there. This time I did not take my motorcycle. I will not go to a place that I or someone else is not familiar with on two wheels, its just too dangerous. Fortunately the night before I did some surfing on line, I must say, Google Earth is a wonderful tool to use and see the sight before getting there. During my surfing I discovered that Gaziantep used to be called Antep and the "Gazi" was added in 1921. "Gazi" meaning "veteran" in Turkish, Wikipedia, another wonderful tool . Since I went to Gaziantep with two asians who spoke nothing but english, I was considered the norm (since I could pass as a turk) and my friends were hot commodaties. Once the locals realize that I am not turkish they immediately want to know where I am from. If you know the type of person that I am, I like to kid around with people. I would ask them where are they from? Of course there would be a long pause and a big grin emerges from their face. I love the turks, they are very humble and genuine people and they get a joke even in foreign language. Well, here are the photos that I took for you to enjoy. Antep Kalesi I thought this mosque looked cool. I took this picture sticking my head out of the car which can be dangerous at times. This photo would have been missed if I wasn't looking up. It was on a second floor some a restaurant. I am assuming that this is the "Speak no evil, Hear no evel and See no evil" statue just based on the hand location. I hope that this and all the other photos that I have posted inspires you and others to get out there and explore. I love taking photos and sharing them, but I would rather hear others getting out there and enjoying what Turkey has to offer. There are so much more that I want to see that I can't wait for each weekend to come.
  3. IslanderX

    Gaziantep

    Few pics of Gaziantep!
  4. IslanderX

    Turkey Pics

    Various sites in Turkey.
  5. IslanderX

    Iskenderun 009.JPG

    On one of my aimless rides, I was heading east and stumbled up this castle, Toprakkale Kalesi.
  6. IslanderX

    Tarsus

    Just a few pictures of Tarsus and the sites along the way.
  7. IslanderX

    IslanderX Gallery

    Collections of Photos that I have taken and really like.
  8. Thanks again for the nice compliments. Ok! Maybe I don't just point and click. When I look at a scenery, I eval the light source, angle and what that scene would look like in a rectangle. Oh trust me, have chopped off peoples heads taking photos. Thats the beauty of digital cameras, I can delete before anyone sees it.... I do have new photos from my trip today. I have no clue where I went, I just ride and I ended up in Iskenderun. Beautiful Mediterrian view, but unfortunately I had to leave because rain was in the forecast.
  9. Just a couple of photos that I took. Our mode of transportation
  10. Thanks for the kind words. I will post more here shortly.
  11. I must apologize because some of the photos were taken while I was in a bus. These are a couple pictures of Alanya.
  12. I have been included with the local rider at Adana, so if you get there and decide to purchase your motorcycle, look me up. I should be there end of May or early June. I will send you a PM once in country. If you do get the job, when would you have to be there?
  13. Someone told me to buy Vonage before I get there. I have heard of them but never really needed it since long distance calls was never an issue if you have a cell phone in the US. Does any one here use Vonage? Is it cheaper? Do you need internet service provider to use it?
  14. Thanks for the reply. BTW, I have seen the Google map, Google Earth gave me more with photos. I am more interested in a unit for my car just in case I get lost, I don't have to ask and deal with the language barrier.
  15. I have been surfing the web in search for a GPS device that I can plug in my car's cigarette lighter. I am just curious if any device(s) are available? Also, I have a Tom Tom One that I use in the US. I tried to see if Tom Tom makes a map for Turkey, but no such luck.
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