Finally back cycling. Dad was worried we were actually stating to have a holiday!
With Emily safely in Çanakkale we rode down the the port to catch a ferry to Datça to start the day’s cycling.
Waiting to board we met a very interested and eccentric man who’d done cycling trips with his wife and knew the brand of our Dutch bikes. He snapped a few photos and gave us a few tips on avoiding dogs on the road. Where was this advice a few weeks back!?
Just as we were about to board two others cycling tourists turned up, Lewis and Rory twins from London cycling the path of Alexander the Great through Turkey on Rory’s gap year. They are raising money for a school in Tanzania. You can check out there blog: http://athegbikeride.blogspot.com/
They’d cycled a lot of the same route of us but had started in Istanbul. The best part was they’d rode through and stayed at Didim so we had other people to talk about the city from hell with!
They’d also met the same German cyclist we had at Ephesus and Priene who has apparently changed his route and is heading back to Germany.
We were both heading for Marmaris so decided to cycle together. We were pushing time a little though because it was 11:45 by the time we set off and we had 70+ Kms to cover.
Dad was in his McGayver element because Lewis was having some serious chain difficulty on his road bike. (if only dad’d put that much effort into our bikes!)
The road along the coast of the peninsula surface-wise was great, a wide shoulder and far smoother than we’ve had’ the only problem was the hills. Undulating doesn’t really cover it.
The first 30kms weren’t too bad so by lunch we were all feeling pretty good just a little hungry. Unluckily for us Turkey the land of the service station wasn’t fulfilling its reputation and we struggled to find anything along the road. Eventually we came up to a little holiday park that we were turned away from because everything was apparently shut.
Fortunately (or maybe unfortunately based on what we had) we managed to scrounge up food from dad’s pack and had a pretty basic picnic in the middle of a little side road. We still had the awful dried figs from Kos which we thought the boys should have replied ‘you’re welcome’ to when we offered them rather than ‘thank you’ for the huge service they were doing us. Like true Australians we had Vegemite so the meal wasn’t a complete waste.
As we were about to leave a German lady came up and said that in fact there was a restaurant open there so we had çay and Kemalpaşa for dessert.
Back on track the hills became progressively steeper and more frequent. The boys certainly had one up on us (me!) going up the hills. It was fairly hot but just thinking ‘Adatepebaşi’ made it much easier.
By 4:00 we still had 20kms to go but were well due for a break. We made a friend out of a little black dog and Jordy ate 4 chocolate bars on his own.
mum called us to say shed found accomation and that it was ‘all down hill’ from where we were stopped.
All I can say in someone needs to buy mum a spirit level and a sense of direction.
We had maybe 5kms of downhill then a gigantic uphill. The view from the top was pretty impressive though. Red rocky cliffs, lush forest and the azure water of the famous harbour of Marmaris.
An almighty downhill and then into town where even with the map from the Lonely Planet we still bacame reasonably lost. It gave us chance to see the city though. It was nice but didn’t have the charm of Bodrum. It was very touristy, lots of English breakfasts on menus and faux Luis Vuitton bags.
The pension Mum found was written up as having the fattest cat in Marmaris but I don’t think that did it justice, it must be the fattest cat in Turkey.
At dinner we ended up at the same restaurant Lewis and Rory were already at and had amazing stuffed vine leaves and cabbage leaves and Jordy had the speciality, manti, a Turkish version of ravioli.