Day 2 - Cuauhtemoc Street mural

Day 2 in Puerto Vallarta - and what a wonderful day it’s been.

Had breakfast just down the block and then headed over to Emiliano Zapata (aka Old Town, Zona Romantica) for a three-hour food tour. Which, by the way, was fantastic and covers food stops in that neighbourhood as well as some in El Centro. More photos and details on that tour much later in the blog!

With bellys filled, we opted to walk around El Centro, starting along some paths along Rio Cuale, up a new foot bridge to Gringo Gulch - Cuauhtemoc Street - one of Puerto Vallarta’s oldest. What a beautiful mural. Absolutely lovely neighbourhood.El Centro PV_C04972.jpg

Day 1 - the view from the Malecon

Another adventure and Day One of a 42 day photo challenge.

Left snowy Alberta and five hours later we had landed in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. A return for me after having last been there some twenty-five years ago.

We dropped off our luggage and headed out for a bite to eat.

The view from in front of our condo along the Malecon - overlooking Banderas Bay, Puerto Vallarta

PV Malecon_IMG_1826.jpg

Trip Interrupted................

It’s been some time since I last posted on our trip to Turkey and although there’s still much more to come, I’ll be taking a break from blogging about that trip because another adventure is underway and I’d like to share that with you now.

So I’ll be back with more from Turkey in a while but stay around for more travel adventure here.

                            door to adventure_IMG_1649.jpg                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                    Doorway to next adventure!

At the beach in Antalya, Turkey

The beautiful blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Antalya, in southwestern Turkey.  Although the waters looked cold and felt cold to me, there were people taking  a morning swim as I walked along the beach.Antalya_C03803.jpg

Antalya_C04049.jpgLooking northeast - east  along the coast of Antalya.Antalya_C04050.jpgA brief rain storm passes over southwestern Antalya as I glance into the distance towards the port of Antalya and the Celebi Marina.Antalya_C04055.jpgWe stayed at the Crowne Plaza (southwest edge of Antalya) for a couple of nights while checking out the sights in the Antalya region such as the ruins at Perge, the amazing theatre at Aspendos, the Duden waterfalls and the Antalya museum.Crowne Plaza Antalya_C04063.jpg

Crowne Plaza Antalya_C04064.jpg

Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

Aksaray Sultanhani Part 3

The Aksaray Sultanhani , an important stopover along the Silk Road, is a beautiful caravanserai (roadside inn)and its great colonnaded hall (winter hall) is spectacular in my estimation!

As the weather grew colder, the travellers stopping at the Aksaray Sultanhani, would head indoors to the winter hall - a massive covered and enclosed hall. The Aksaray Sultanhani, with Its nave and side aisles, is supported by four rows of pillars and  numerous arches. The dome at the centre of the nave allows light to stream in.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5684.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5685.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5686.jpgLight streams in from various portals into one of the side aisles.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5702.jpgStepping into one of the side aisles looking down the corridor of arches.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5683.jpgLooking down the main corridor of the great hall.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5684.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5688.jpgI found the dome to be absolutely gorgeous!Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5690.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5689.jpgLooking back towards the entrance of the great hall.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5698.jpgWhat a fantastic stop along the way to Konya and later to the south coast of Turkey.

Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

Aksaray Sultanhani Part 2

Aksaray Sultanhani is a caravanserai (roadside inn) in Sultanhani, central Turkey.

As I glanced around the courtyard, I noticed these interesting steps near the entrance.  I was definitely intrigued by them.

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5675.jpgA closer look at these interesting stairs!Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5714.jpgLooking at the steps even closer.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5717.jpgOr is it this way??Aksaray Sultanhani__IMG_5717.jpg

Then I got this idea. What if I made the steps into a square photo and then …..                        


….. combined four photos?  It’s kind of a brain teaser, isn’t it!

Staring at stairs!Aksaray Sultanhani_stairs.jpg

Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

Aksaray Sultanhani part 1

Need a rest after a long day’s journey? This calls for a stop at the next caravanserai ( call it a truck stop for camels, if you like!)

A caravanserai is a roadside inn where travellers used to stop to rest from a long day’s journey. Caravanserais aided the flow of commerce, information, and people across the complex network of caravan trade routes spread across southern Europe,  North Africa, and Asia. Caravanserais provided shelter, food and drink for the travellers, their animals and cargo.  These inns would all have specific areas within their walls - baths, a mescit (mosque), cisterns or fountains, a room for cooking, rooms for sleeping, rooms for storage and repair shops.

The Sultan Han is a Seljuk caravanserai located in Sultanhani, a town some 40 kms west of Aksaray in central Turkey built in the early 1200’s. I found it to be a beautiful structure and one of my favourite stops in central Turkey.

The beautifully carved east entrance (portal) of Sultan Han.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5661.jpgA sign at the Aksaray Sultanhani caravanserai entrance.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5665.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5663.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani entry_IMG_5663.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5664.jpgAs I entered through the large entry doors, I stepped into the courtyard of the caravanserai at Aksaray Sultanhani with the free-standing mescit (mosque) in the center nearest the front entrance. The base level contained the fountain basin with the upper story containing the prayer room (mescit) with access to the mescit via a staircase.  Beyond the courtyard stands a massive covered hall - used during the cold months to shelter the merchants and their animals from the harsh winter weather.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5719.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5713.jpg 

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5668.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani Prayer Room_IMG_5668.jpgStorage bins, repair shops, places to groom horses and camels and a place to sleep in warmer weather line the one side of the caravanserai.Aksaray Sultanhani_C03730.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5678.jpgLooking through the arches of the open shops that line the edge of the caravanerai.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5670.jpgGlancing through the arches of the central mosque towards the enclosed rooms opposite the shops.Aksaray Sultanhani_C03732.jpgOne of the doorways to what might have been a space for a kitchen, administration offices, hammams (bathing rooms) and sleeping areas for the visiting merchants opposite the open air shops.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5708.jpgI checked the translation for yemek which means dining. And Hane meaning households.  So perhaps this was a dining room or a kitchen for the caravanerai.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5706.jpgA closer look into the Yemek Hane.Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5704.jpgA large room next to the Yemek Hane space shows tiny rooms off the main room. Perhaps sleeping quarters?Aksaray Sultanhani_IMG_5716.jpg

Aksaray Sultanhani_C03744.jpg

Next to come - more on Sultanhani.

Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

Aksaray Countryside - Turkey

Views out of the window as we head west-southwest from Ushiar to Aksaary.Turkey_C03717.jpg


Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

A fine night's rest at LykiaLodge Kapadokya

While visiting the Cappadocia region in central Turkey, we stayed at the LykiaLodge Kapadokya, a colourful contemporary boutique hotel located about 3 kms west of Ushisar on the way to Nevsehir. The hotel’s two indoor and outdoor restaurants serve local and interntational cuisine.Lykia Lodge_C03705.jpgMurals line the walls as one enters the hotel. Quite beautiful.Lykia Lodge_C03713.jpg

Lykia Lodge_C03712.jpgA view from the pool area of the hotel and restaurant (left side). Delicious meals were had. Too chilly for a dip in the pool.Lykia Lodge_C03708.jpg

Lykia Lodge_C03710.jpg

Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour

Living in Uçhisar Castle

Uçhisar Castle, the large rock on the top of the hill in Uçhisar in the Cappadocia region - we didn’t get a chance to hike up to the top of the citadel although it’s said that the views from there are magnificent looking over Pigeon Valley and beyond.Ushisar_Panorama1.jpgA closer look at Uçhisar Castle - it’s not really a castle..but a large rock with many rooms carved in it.Ushisar_IMG_5650.jpg

Ushisar_IMG_5645.jpgAs we’re about to leave for our night’s accommodations, we’re approached by a camel and its owner - how about a photo with the camel? No thanks, but how about a photo of the camel!   


Friendly Planet - Best of Turkey tour


Welcome to my travel photo blog. Photography has been a part of my life for a long time – back in the day the Pentax Super Program was always near at hand. But it wasn’t until I started travelling around the world that photography became a vehicle for me to show others about the absolutely amazing and complex world we live in. My hope is to share with you glimpses of what I’ve seen. Enjoy!