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return via Turkey part 1
Written by sophie et jeremy   
Saturday, 17 October 2015

Before being back to the civilization on the turkish side and it tarmac roads, we drive 200km in georgia along the border. It s a pretty serie of gorges and passes, we even see a surprising ski resord with one slope.

adjaria adjaria

Once in Turkey, we drive the long way to the lake Van.

van 1 van 1 van 2 van 2

Along the road, we see Syrians refugees living under tents, who seem to have been here for a while. Near the lake stands the old volcano Nemrut dag of which we visit the crater and its lake, with superb landscapes.

nemrut dag 1 nemrut dag 1 nemrut dag  2 nemrut dag 2

nemrut dag 3 nemrut dag 3

Later we take a tourist boat to the small island of Akhdamar and its famous armenian church (we haven t seen enough). Sadly we leave without having seen any local cat, known to swim in the lake from time to time!

Akhdamar 1 Akhdamar 1 Akhdamar 2 Akhdamar 2

Despite our will to avoid the south of Turkey and the conflict between the turkish government and kurds, we met a few checkpoints including one that turned us back without explanation. On the evening, an inhabitant come to us in our bush camping and make us follow him and sleep near its petrol station. It came out to be a good idea as it seems there are military operations in the area, and armed helicopter looking for suspicious activities at night.

We keep on driving west, passing by some superbs gorges along the Euphrates river, on a road cut inside the cliff.

euphrates 1 euphrates 1 euphrates 2 euphrates 2

euphrates 3 euphrates 3

Small stop in Divrigi to visit a nice mosque – hospital and in Nigde to see it s cave monastery.

divrigi divrigi nigde nigde

Then, we go across a mountain range to the south via vertiginous roads hanged on steep cliffs, before arriving on the mediterranean sea and the very touristy coast.

karapinar road karapinar road