Stops: random stop -> Pamukkale -> random stop -> Bodrum
Playlists: crossword, and Summer Party (Spotify)
We had a pretty decent sleep at a gas station off the main road. We asked the restaurant owner if we can sleep there and he wasn't even phased by it. It wasn't like the rest stops in Europe, but it did the job and we felt safe.
After waking up in a sauna and draining our shirts, we were on our way to Pamukkale. This was a highlight of Turkey I couldn't wait to see. Justin kept asking why but I didn't have the words to describe it, and I still don't. It's just so cool, especially considering it's located in a region you would never expect to see it in. Here you have all these lush green fields with sandy mountains in the background with the feel of a desert, and then these beautiful white cliffs that look like glaciers.
Pamukkale is a cliff of white calcium travertines that were turned into ancient Roman baths back in the day. You can still see the remains of what used to be a town with its fortresses, Roman theatre, and an antique pool of mineral water from the springs. We walked right through the travertines in our bare feet, wandered the town, watched some of the excavation still happening on site, and stood in the Roman theatre. Unreal. We even flew the drone twice, once from up top and once from right in the travertines. A security guard came up to us and told us big no no as we were already putting it away, but no arrests were made today.
We drove another few hours, well Justin did, I napped. I tend to read him crossword clues but he can tell when I'm done because he'll either give me answers and I'll have no idea what he's talking about or I zone out or I write answers in entirely wrong places. Moments like these he puts on music and tells me go to sleep.
I woke up and we stopped for food at a local little restaurant where the guy insisted on cutting us grapes off his vines and kept saying it's like momma'a kitchen, not a restaurant. It was. It was also delicious. Both our meals were a taste of home for me, actually, as they were done in the exact same way my mom makes them. Justin had little meat dumpling things covered in tomato sauce and sour cream (or garlic yogurt) and I had grape vines stuffed with meat in a garlic yogurt sauce. It was too hot for a big meal so this was perfect. We're also starting to notice that EVERY place we've eaten at in Turkey serves a basket of bread, a dish of pickled chilies and peppers, and a little bowl of homemade salsa as a starter without even uordering. They're all the same but all different at the same time. Clearly homemade and very delicious. I even ate the chilies, me! I burned, I cried, but I kept eating.
We weren't far from the coast now and as we rolled into Bodrum, our jaws dropped. So beautiful! Definitely a resort town and it's all spas and beaches with lounges. We found a nice campsite and will sleep in peace tonight. Had our first swim in the Mediterranean Sea, and the best (first) shower in a while.
We walked down the coast until we found THE cushiest couches, ordered a bottle of wine, a shisha, and a Turkish Pizza. Knowing we're in a locked, secluded, family oriented campsite, is allowing us to relax for the first time in the evening in ages. So we are taking tonight to recoup and just have an awesome time while this bar plays Bryan Adams. Not going to lie, could get used to this!
Tapping out from the interwebs for tonight! Ciao!