May13 Left Dallas
May 14 London for the El Greco Exhibition in National Gallery
May 15 Day Trip to Brighton and Visited Greenwich
May 16 Istanbul, Turkey
May 17 Canakkale (Gallipoli)
May 18,19 Kusadasi (Troy,Bergamon,Ephesus,Sirince,House of Virgin Mary, Temple of Diane)
May 20 Denizli (Aphrodisias,Hierapolis,Pamukkle)
May 21 Konya
May 22,23 Cappadocia
May 24 Ankara
May 25 Bursa
May 26, 27 Istanbul
May 28 Got back London Late
May 29 Visit Blenhiem Palace and Oxford
May 30 Back to Dallas


Turkey's currency is Turkish Lira.  In May 2004, $1 = 1.5 million Turkish Lira! 1500000!

Oh my God! We are millionaire! Pius and I were overwhelmed. Someday...

Anyway, in May 16 in Istanbul, we ate street foods because there was a music festival behind our hotel.
This was the big, huge mistake. we had to fight with local Turks to get our food.
We got little meat after one hour of waiting. This was a bad experience.  

Actually, Turkish foods were good. And people in our tour were very nice.

May 17 Istanbul  ==> Gallipoli, Anzac Cemetery ==>  ferry crossing to Asia Minor ==>  Canakkale

At Anzac Cemetery, this cemetery is dedicated to those died in the Gallipoli campaign of World War I.

I was not interested in here at all, sorry though.    

the trenches of the battle   a statute of Ataturk, the founder of the Turkish Republic..

The view from a ferry.

May 18  ==> Troy ==> Bergamon ==>  Kusadasi


Legendary Troy! This horse was not real. My honest feeling was
that there were bunch of rocks. However, Pius was impressed by this ruin.
Troy has 9 different strata since around 2500 B.C. This fact seems to amaze Pius.

Next stop was Bergamon (Pergamum) at 800 B.C.


For me, it was still bunch of rocks.
I found a very very nice chess set in here; however, I was convinced not to buy it here
because the day was still the beginning of trip. This was huge mistake. I could not find the same
chess set any more... The person convinced me was Pius!

May 19 Ephesus, Sirince, Virgin Mary, and Temple of Diane (staied in Kusadasi)

Actually, Ephesus impressed me. This Greek city was built about 1000 BC.

Colonnaded street Our guide said, "This is Champs Elysees in 1000BC."


Library of Celsus was also magnificent.
The inside of the library was disappointing, though.

In lunch time, we stopped by small local town, Sirince. This was nice place, where they had many shops.

lunch place, the lady make Gozleme.

shops town

The House of Virgin Mary. According to the bible,
Virgin Mary spent the last years of her life here. It's up to you to believe it or not.
In my opinion, I'd rather to skip this place.


The last stop was Temple of Diane, one of the Even Wonders of the World.
Oops, there were just several columns...

May 20 Aphrodisias ==> Hierapolis ==> Pamukkale ==> Denizli

Aphrodisias ( early 5800 BC)  Bunch of rocks again.

I like this picture. Cool, isn't it? Tetrapylon


Pamukkale (a.k.a Cotton Castle)
This white stuff is the layers of white calcium carbonate. 

May 21 Long drive. We didn't see much. Staied in Konya.

We visited Mevlana Museum and local shops. Our guide told us that
Konya is the most conservative city, so most of women cover their entire faces.
Pius and I were a little bit nervous before walking around in town. However,
people were so friendly and nice to us. I guess that people rarely see foreigners. 
We loved this town. It is worth to walking around the city.

May 22 Konya ==> Sultanhani caravansary ==> Goreme ==> Cappadocia

We were woke up around 4:30 am! It started to pray.
Holy cow! The pray made me strange feeling. This was very good experience.  

Sultanhani was the hotel of caravan.


Goreme was the open air museum in Cappadoica.
This has rock-cut chapels and monasteries, which were build around 9th century.
(UNESCO) 

May 23 This day was excursion of typical Cappadocia.

This was the scenery which I expected. 
Oh, we saw a rock so called mother-in-law. It looked like a gorilla.
Well, the image of a mother-in-law is universal..? 

Also we visited at underground cities: Ozkonak

May 24 Cappadocia ==> Ankara


We didn't join a optional sightseeing. We were own.
We visited Museum of Anatolian Civilizations. This museum had very good collections.
This is must-see museum.

After the museum, we went to Bazaars and markets near the museum.
The markets were too local, so we were bored. They sold daily life stuff.


After dinner, we walked to Kocatepe Mosque.
Actually this was the first mosque to go inside. We were impressed.
Particularly, The chandelier was so beautiful.
This looks small, but the actual size was huge.
 

May 25 Ankara ==> Gordion ==> Bursa

The first stop was Gordion museum and Midas Tomb.

Gordion museum was so so. However, Midas Tomb seemed to impress

many people.

The main sightseeing of Bursa was the market area.

There were covered bazaar and 


Koza Han . We, women, were so busy to choose silk scarf
because more than 50 silk shops were in there. I was overwhelmed.
I needed more time! Anyway, I got one silk scarf. Thank you Pius.

Our hotel was next sea. Our room had a loft.

May 26 Bursa ==> Istanbul


Blue mosque and Hippodrome were included. 
Blue mosque was beautiful, but the outside was more beautiful than its inside.
To me, Hippodrome was ..??

Afterward, we took a taxi to Dolmabahce Palace. 


On the way back, we stopped by the Spice Bazaar.
They sold all kinds of spice and Turkish delight. We ate a lot of delight here.
I, have sweet tooth, was happy!


May 27 Istanbul
First thing in the morning, we visited the Tokapi Palace including the Harem.
They have so many things to see. We spent here 3.5 hours. I was exhausted.
Then, we stopped by the Archaeological Museum including the Museum of the
Ancient Orient.  These museum were fantastic! One of the most impressing stuff
was "Alexander Sacrophagus". This picture is not good, though.
(The person took this picture was Pius..) Definitely, it is worth of seeing these collections.
After lunch, we saw the Haghia Sophia
I couldn't believe that there were ugly contraction stuff covered
almost half of the inside of Sophia! Besides that, inside Haghia sophia was not
that beautiful. I guess that it was old.
Then, Basilica Cistern This was undergound water cistern.
Actually, this was different to other places.
The last stop was Grand Bazaar
where we shopped the Ottoman Chess Set for me..?
(It was not the same one which I saw in Bergamon )
May 28 Istanbul => London
We visited the Orient Express Train Station,
Oh my god! this was the famous Orient Express station!
Someday, I want to take an Orient express train.
Next stop was Suleymaniye Mosque
We saw so many beautiful mosque, so we couldn't appreciate this mosque.
we stopped by Spice Bazaar for Turkish Delights. 

We walked across the Galata Bridge
(so many people fished and got small fishes.)


And hiked up to the Galata Tower.  We did our last visit of Grand Bazaar to spend the
last of our millions of Turkish lira. (this time, we bought Pius's leather belt).
 It's time to meet our ride to Airport back in the hotel!