Intercontinental crossings

Bosphorus Bridge, Turkey

Today’s boat trip involved bouncing back and forth between Europe and Asia while heading northwards up the Bosphorus. After less than two hours – spent watching passing ships, seagulls, and the countless jellyfish in the waters beside the ferry – we found ourselves at the northernmost village on the Asian side.

The place was well populated with tourists, despite there being only one ferry per day which pauses between about noon and 3:00pm to allow people to see the place. As the motors began to warm up at three, you could see many people in restaurants with ocean views hurrying to settle bills and put on coats. A hill overlooking the Black Sea contains the ruins of at least two generations of fortresses, while the town itself contained both more cats and more assault rifle toting soldiers than anywhere else I have seen in Turkey. As we ate lunch at a roadside cafe, at least five canvas-topped trucks full of them rumbled by. Clearly, the northern entrance to such a strait remains strategic.

Both in spite of and on account of the ever-present haze that sharply reduces visibility around Istanbul, I have some photos that I am excited about from the crossings. In particular, swooping sea birds in front of misted freighters and the clean lines of the two intercontinental suspension bridges should be attractive. I am reaching the point (with 120 images on my memory card and one roll of film shot), where I begin to worry about unexpected data problems. I wish I had some mechanism for putting them online now, but carrying my six pound and worry-inducing laptop around Turkey wasn’t really a good option.

Tomorrow, it seems we will be making a twelve hour journey to either Ephesis or Capadoccia, though the final decision remains to me made. Personally, I am quıte sure that Ephesis would be amazing, but it seems likely to emulate other Mediterranean spots fairly closely. Capadoccia, I expect, would be more specific to Turkey. Forgive my spellings if they are incorrect; both of those above have hundreds of Google hits, but no Wikipedia pages.

Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

3 thoughts on “Intercontinental crossings”

  1. If you’ve seen ruins before and it is an either or situation I would go to Cappdocia, it is truly amazing. However a friend of mine who has been to bht Greece and Turkey said that Ephesis is far better than what she saw in Greece.

  2. Julia,

    I have been to Pompeii before, which I am told is like Ephesis.

    While it was certainly interesting, it is not something that I would go out of my way to do again.

    What would you suggest seeing in Capadoccia?

  3. I spent my time in Goreme and there was a great open air museum there. IT has been a few years and I unfortunately don’t have my Lonely Planet here to jog my memory. The underground cities are worth checking out and if you can take a tour around the area with a guide it is worth it as well. Going for a walk in the fairy chimneys is a must too. Sorry I can’t be more helpful!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *