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Wojciech's Travel log

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You can lose everything, but nobody will take away what you saw and what you experienced...

Log entries 31 - 40 of 2797 Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Mar 16, 2023 12:00 AM Enchanting Batumi

Enchanting Batumi It was hazy in the morning. But later I experienced gret sun. I walked to "Black Sea Gate" - modern sculpture on the round about. Then bus no 3 took me to the catholic church near the port. Cable car (30 lari for round trip operates from this area. My next point was the cathedral church in thr old part of the town. Finally in front of the theater I took a picture of the Neptune fountain. It was already 12 pm and time to pack my backpack again and go to the airport bus starting from the Radisson hotel. They charge 20 lari for 2 hours drive to Kutaisi airport.
My low-cost flight was not full. After 3 h 10 min flight we landed in Abu Dhabi. Midnight, 22 deg. Celsius... :)

Mar 15, 2023 12:00 AM Batumi impresssd me...

Batumi impresssd me... In the morning, after many hours spent on the bus I said goodbye to Turkey and crossed border to Georgia. From the border crossing Sarpi marshrutka for 2 lari (1 dollar is worth 2,55 lari) took me to Batumi - capital of Ajaria prowince. Brothers Georgians are friendly and hospitable but still chaotic and so not well-organized. I lost an hour to find my booked hostel just to recognized that my room is occupied... After another two hours they accommodated me in the other place.
Batumi nowadays looks great! Much bstter then in the post-soviet times when I was here for the first time!
There is a line of new hotels. along the pebble beach, dancing fountain and old quarter... But for today I have enough - I bough a flat Georgian bread for 1,50 lari and I need a rest after busy and tiring day! :)

Mar 14, 2023 12:00 AM Ancient Synopa - now Sinop

Ancient Synopa - now Sinop In the ancient time Greeks from Milet established here their settlement. The place on the wind-protected peninsula on the Turkish coast of the Black Sea was later developed by different civilisations. In the meantime the famous and intriguing philosopher Diogenes was born here and has his monument in front of the city walls. Today's Sinopa is worth to see: it has nice pedestrian boulevards along the coast, quiet Alaadin mosque with small medresa on the other side of the street, tiny, picturesque port and huge city walls. The bus station (otogar) is located some 6 kms away from peninsula - you have to use minibus (dolmus) to get from there to the town. They charge 7 TL for the ride. The nearest big city is Samsun you will pay 130 TL to get there, and it will take around 3 hours.
Soon I have to say goodbye to Turkey- I am heading back to Trabzon and onward to the border of Georgia!

Mar 13, 2023 12:00 AM Samsun in the rain...

Samsun in the rain... It must also rain someday... Samsun (not Samsung) is the capital of the prowince and important port on the coast of the Black Sea. I stayed here in the cozy, friendly and old-fashioned Necmi hotel for 15 euro/room with shared bath. It is located in the narrow alley, but very close to the main Republic Square. From this wide and empty square a nice, palms and fountains- fringed promenade goes to the sea. Once you will reach the coast you expect the beach, but no, no, no! There is something I did not see in my life: a big diorama with natural-soze human figures showing scene of the landing in Samsun from the boat the Father of Turks - Ataturk. In this country he is the national hero, displayed everywhere... Nothing else to see in Samsun in the rain...

Mar 12, 2023 12:00 AM Sumela Monastery

Sumela Monastery Greek Orthodox monastery in islamic Turkey? Well, before Ottomans here were Greeks and Bizantium... Imagine that 45 kms inland from coastal Trabzon in the mountains, on the altitude of 1200 m above the sea there are nicely restored remains of the monastery. Now it is museum only but till 1974 the monks were still praying there... Imagine huge outcrop of the mountain and on the rocky wall below the chapel with frescos and cells. It is not easy to get there if you do not have a car - it is far from the settlements, but I joined the offered tour by microbus - it cost me 17 euro RT. The microbus took us to the parking in the deep valley. Then you can buy ticket for the shuttle going further up for 20 TL. Once there it is only the climbing - like 20 minutes by well maintained path to the monastery door. Here foreigners are forced to pay 125 TL entry fee (locals only 60 - what a shame!) and you are free to visit monastery buildings. They are on the different levels so there is still up and downs! The place is unforgettable although I saw similaronument in Vardzia, Georgia. Strong wind was blowing when I was descending, but fortunately no rain. Great place, great day!

Mar 11, 2023 12:00 AM Crossing border to Turkey

Crossing border to Turkey Marshrutka from Kutaisi to Batumi goes every hour and you can flag it at any place on the road. They charge 20 lari pp. In Batumi tjey will drop you in the city center - just 30 m from the tourost info kiosk. It is worth to go there to grab some brochures and ask for info. Another minibus to the border - no
88 departs from little square some 300 m away. For jusy 2 lari they will take you to Sarpi border crossing. Before the season i was waiting only 30 min on the Turkish side. No money exchange in Turkish Sarpi but they accept lari to cover bus ride from the border to Trabzon. Normally in they charge 130 lira, 1 euro is worth 20 lira.
The road goes there in the nice landscape - just on the coast, at the bottom of the mountains. In Trabzon, 200 km from the border I found accommodation just near the otogar - bus station (an apartment fre 20 euro) and toot the walk to the main city square with the monument of Ataturk. There is lovely square around with crowd of the people wondering around, I used pedestrian street to go from there to the bazaar. It offers not only many shops squeezed in narrow streets but also few mosques. Trabzon is nice!

Mar 10, 2023 12:00 AM Flying to Georgia

Flying to Georgia I took city bus 425 in Larnaca to get to the airport. They charge 2 euro for the ticket - cash only! Allow enough time because it is short distance but the bus is sneaking in the town. I was on time anyway. There is a long marathon in the duty free departament... Wizz plane arrived on time. 2 hours 10 minutes in the air and two hours time change and we landed in Kutaisi in Georgia. What a nice terminal they built in Kutaisi! European level!
Years ago I saw here old soviet construction... What a change!
My host from Gio hostel picked me up from the airport. His house is big with the roomy rooms. But the only bathroom is downstairs. 15 euro per night only. Wecome to Georgia!

Mar 09, 2023 12:00 AM I crossed the Green Line..

I crossed the Green Line.. Since the collapse of the Berlin Wall there is only one capital city which is divided by two: it is Nocosia, the capital of Cyprus. Today in the morning I took the bus from Larnaca, where I live to Nicosia. Round trip to ticket (they call it day ticket) costs 7 euro and the journey takes 1 h 15 min, if no traffic jams. I landed at the city walls of Nocosia. Benetians ruled here in 16th century. They build around the city ideally circular chain of the ealls with 11 bastions. If fotographed from the air it reminds a snowflake. Funny and unusual! I took a walk along the walls. Imagine, that regular street goes now on the top of the wall! It was worth to stop at Famagusta Gate - one of four old city gates. Then I was crawling narrow street of the old town, visiting couple of orthodox churches, photographing abandoned mosques. Imagine that in the heart of old Nicosia they just built enormous church with bright iconostasis...
There is only one border crossing to North (Turkish) Nicosia open for walkers and bikers only. It is north of Pafos gate. They call it Lodra Palace passage. In the nicely restored palace now reside UN soldiers who stay in the buffer zone. Passport control on both sides, no crowd. I crossed the Green Line - as the locals call the demarcation zone. There are many abandoned, destroyed houses in this zone - the view is depressing...
The image of North Nicosia is not as bright as in the south. But apart from the bazaar I foun one intereresting places: two caravanserais housing now shops, galleries and restaurants. The huge church of St Sophia, converted by Ottomans into mosque is under restauration.

Mar 08, 2023 12:00 AM Pottery from Larnaca

Pottery from Larnaca Best wishes for all charming ladies on the occasion of the International Women's Day!
Every Wednesday at 10 am the Tourist Office of Larnaca offers free walking tour of the town with the guide. I decided to join such a tour today because local guides usually have great knowledge about places. Old lady took us through the labyrinth of the narrow streets pointing the most interesting places and the free Medical Museum. But the highlight of the tour was the visit in the pottery workshop where the master demonstrated the production process of the dishes. On our eyes he made so called Pitagoras cup - a cup vacuum pumping off all the liquid from inside when the initial level exceed defined amount. So funny!

Mar 07, 2023 12:00 AM Walk to Cape Greco

Walk to Cape Greco Another sunny day! I took an intercity bus from the Lar naca beachfront to Aiya Napa. It cost only 7 euro for the day ticket=round trip. It is some 45 kms to drive, bot it took us more than an hour to the to the monastery stop. Only in 1974 Aiya Napa was a small fishing village. Now the monastery is closed, asking for restauration but around there are plenty of luxury hotels, bars and restaurants... I took a long, 8-km walk to the Cape Greco - the southeasternmost point of Cyprus. On the exit from the town near Marina Hotel I found interesting sculpture park. and then... The road is good, but the hitching is very hard!.
I reached Cape Greco anyway. Just before the sunset the lighting was nice. I was surprised - the cape is not on the high cliff but on the flat rock! Actually it is not possible to go to the point because this area is fenced - restricted for the lighthouse. It was still a great, tiring day and unusual place!

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