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Egirdir – Afyonkarahisar

Trip Details

Road Trip 2012 I
Date: Tue, 03/07/2012
Distance: 140km
Motorcyclists: Manolis, Giorgos Z, Stratos
Photographers: Manolis, Giorgos Z, Stratos
Authors: Manolis
Translators: Sakis
Map: Trip map

Sightseeing map

We were located at an altitude close to 900m. and the night was very cool. I woke up refreshed and went to the little courtyard. Soon George came. We asked our elderly landlord to make 2 coffees before we were served our breakfast. We were very relaxed and did not care if we were delayed. Anyway we only had 150km. about to go to our destination, the Afyonkarahisar.

Before we left we decided to do a short ride to the island where we were in Yesilada. The Egirdir has some attractions, including the mosque in the center and has the architecture of an old karvansaray. Also, there are attractions in Yesilada, as part of the castle is left, the old Greek houses (those located at the entrance) and one of the 14 Greek churches that have survived the Ayastefanos (St Stefan), from where we started our walk pedestrians.

The church of St. Stephen was in walking distance from the pension. Externally it is well preserved, while the interior is not saved some paintings. As the church-roof-for initially had the hull of a large boat over the years was replaced with a normal roof. Unfortunately we could not go inside because it was locked. So whatever we could see was from the windows.

We continued our ride driven by the lake. It was blowing enough air and one side was rough, in contrast to the other was completely calm. Its turquoise colors combined with blue sky created a charming effect! Before returning, we rammed for a while in the narrow alleys and we found beautiful homes, many of which had the traditional architecture: stone floor and the wooden floor. Most of them were not preserved, while others were simply nailed sheets of Plate on exterior walls to reduce the damage from the weather.

The time had reached 12 when we got ready to depart. We greeted the nice woman of the owner, but unfortunately he was missing. We took a souvenir photo outside the pension and I promised myself that I would display it and will send it to my return to Greece. So we left for Afyonkarahisar, following the course to northwest. Having seen the eastern lakeside route I suggested the guys (after the prompting from a friend Turk motorcyclist) to follow western lakeside path and as it was demonstrated later, we did very well.

With our guide the signs to Barla, Afyonkarhisar and Senirkent we drove to a road with relatively good quality asphalt and comfortable curves that made our driving enjoyable. It had many places with stunning view of the lake on the left and the Barla Dagi Mountains that reached the 2.800m. on our right.

Having traveled about 30-40km., we were found in the junction with the main road Yalvac - Senirkent. From there we decided to get in Afyon (60km) through the city Suhut rather than through Dinar. In front of us there was an area with herbaceous vegetation because of the summer it was dry. Tree you cannot see almost anywhere. The road climbed hypsometrically, reaching about 1,400m. The ride was comfortable.

Despite the fact that the vegetation was minimal, the landscape had a special beauty. Until Afyonkarahisar we moved to this backdrop vegetation - landscape. One part is in a basin where the residents of the nearby town Suhut cultivated some parts of land, and so you could see some trees and arable land. The altitude does not fall below 1000m. and the temperature was perfect for traveling.

Arriving in Afyonkarahisar, we went from a part of the town that has high raise buildings. Quickly, however, we approached the busy shopping center that coincides with the old part of the town. On the previous day we had a look for hotels and we find a good solution as the Hotel Soydan. We knew that it was in the center, but not exactly. We tried to find it with the gps but we failed. So we started asking some locals who were very willing to help, but spoke only Turkish! Anyway the solution gave some policemen riders who took us to the hotel entrance! As it turned out-finally-it was very easy, since it was on a main road near the central square that houses the War Memorial and the Museum of Victory.

The hotel (with breakfast 120TL/3 person) is an ideal spot to go walking in the city's main attractions, but has a major problem with parking. The stuff does not speak English. The concert was with sign and with scattered Turkish words. The situation became even more difficult when they tried to convince us to park our bikes at the reception (!) Elevating it from some small ramps. Of course we did not even attempt it (big weight) and simply parked it on the pavement with big attention!

After we changed clothes, we decided pedestrians to begin visiting the old town, after lunch (for the first time this hour-4pm.) in one of the many "kebab" restaurants. First we went to the central square that houses the War Memorial and the Museum of Victory that worth more the building than its exhibits. Then we rammed in the area behind the Monument that is located beneath the towering and majestic rock on top of which stands the Seljuk castle. You can visit it, but at first you will have to climb 700 steps.

We preferred to walk through neighborhoods to discover many traditional homes, other well preserved and other left in their fate. I was impressed that while some gave you the impression that it was abandoned, you find that it was inhabited! In the narrow streets kids were playing, while women did either business or muse over drinking tea. We met other larger mosques and other smaller ones. Some roads were more 'commercial', featuring small shops. It gave you the impression that each guild had its own area, like the area of blacksmiths, goldsmiths, trader of clothes, confectioners, etc. In a blacksmith invited us to see how they work, and we took some pictures.

By luck as we were wandering we found signs pointing us in the direction of the Ulu Camii - Grand Mosque. It was built in 1272. Its characteristic is that it has 40 columns with traces of color in some of the capitals. Fortunately, we barely had time to find it open and we saw its interior (free entrance). Just across it was the road that was leading to the stairs of the castle.

We took the road to the center and found ourselves at the Museum of the Whirling Dervishes to be visited (free entrance). The city was the second largest center of Dervishes in the world after the city of Konya. Continuing we passed in front of a bike repairing and Stratos thought to ask if it has a light for the back of its bike. It had burned several days ago and wherever we looked we did not find. This time he was lucky. Although he did not speak any English, we colluded. When we told them we were Greeks and then delighted the mechanic showed us the card of a Greek motorcyclist who had sent from Greece and thanked him for his hospitality.

Shortly after the repairing shop we made a stop at a small park. Shortly afterwards we continued back to our neighborhood. We visited the main mosque in the area and we photographed its elaborate minaret. The evening ended drinking coffee at a cafe on the first floor across the hotel. We watched the people passing: how he was dressed, what he did, how he drove impressed me the fact that no one was wearing shorts, all trousers! Most girls wore scarves and some of them long dresses and long sleeved shirts. The Society of Afyon was actually conservative, as the whole region of Konya...