Monday, April 14, 2008


So we spent two lovely days in Istanbul, but because we'll return there before leaving Turkey, we'll give a recount a little later on. Our second stop in Turkey was in the small village of Olympos, on the southern Mediterranean coast. It may seem strange that we need a vacation after what's essentially a year long vacation, but every once in a while you need a destination that's purely about R+R. Olympos' chief draw, aside from a beach and the opportunity to sleep in a tree house, is a series of ancient ruins, connected by short hikes through beautiful mountainous countryside and groves of olive, lemon and orange trees.

We spent our first two days exploring the overgrown ruins--mostly dating from 2nd centruy BC to 3rd century AD--marvelling at the necropolis and mosaics, walking along aqueducts, hiking up to castles overlooking the sea, and stumbling across a theatre in the middle of the woods that still had some decent acoustics. The city fell into decline in the 3rd century AD because of pirates. Aaarg. But I guess we should thank the pirates for leaving such an idyllic vacation spot and some ruins behind. Visiting in the off-season meant that we had the place mostly to ourselves, but also that we (Kristi) only swam in the cold cold Mediterranean Sea for about two minutes.

We should also thank our friend Dan, who visited Olympos about fifteen years ago and recommended the original Kadir's Tree Houses as a place to stay in Turkey. While Kadir's turned out to be a little too rock n' roll for our country lifestyle, luckily about ten imitators have sprung up in the valley, so we got the relaxing tree house experience we were looking for. Aye matey!

-k & d

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