Welcome to Turkey

Welcome to Turkey


After a restful night at the hotel we left Svistov. Right after the city, it was the first time right up the mountain. From the top was one last time to see the Danube.
Bulgaria was again a leap into another world. I was really surprised by Bulgaria. Unfortunately, it was not as impressive by the people as in Romania. For this, Bulgaria has a lot to offer. The first night we stayed at a beautiful river.

Due to time constraints, we opted for the fast alternative across Bulgaria. Actually, I originally wanted to drive to the Black Sea and then down the coast. At the moment I'm more attracted to Asia. Since the Black Sea stop without my visit. Until Tarnovo we went along the highway.

I do not know what is worse: dogs or Bulgarian truck drivers. A street sign has best expressed my point of view.
The first time on my trip, it was about a pass (698 meters above sea level). For Swiss standards quite small but great!
Due to the damp weather, our tents and sleeping bags are usually quite wet in the morning. As soon as the sun is out, there is a drying break.
Shortly before Nova Zagora the road ran along a beautiful lake, whose name I unfortunately forgot.

Probably because of the heat. Through the constant up and down the brain cells burn up very fast. In the evening we found a beautiful place at a lake (whose name I also do not remember!). A man (name ?!) lives there with his 3 dogs in a car.

He spent 10 years in the Bulgarian Army and now lives as a guest worker in this great place. As a welcome, he served us coffee with rakija (a hellish schnapps). The dogs guarded our tent all night. Which is very reassuring But why must the stupid mutt bark all night? Exactly on my birthday we crossed the Turkish border. Tom had to buy a visa of 15 € as a British citizen. I was able to enter with a friendly smile. In Edirne we met Balci Gökhan from the Edirne Nature Sports Club. He has organized a campground in the amusement park and spontaneously donated water for his birthday.

The next morning, the amusement park's secretary looked at our muesli and shockingly served us a real Turkish breakfast with tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, cheese, bread and chai (Turkish tea). Before we went on we visited the Selimiye Mosque.

The Selimiye Mosque (Edirne Selimiye Camii) in Edirne was built on the order of Sultan Selim II by the master builder Sinan in the years 1568-1575. Sinan himself described the building as "his masterpiece," and is considered the pinnacle of Ottoman architecture. The 71-meter-high minarets each have three passages, which can be accessed via three separate staircases. The central dome, which rests on eight massive support columns, measures 31.28 m in diameter; their height measured from the ground is given as 43.28 m. The marble pulpit and the tiles of this mosque have gained worldwide fame.

During the occupation of Edirne by Russian forces in 1878, some of the tiles were stolen and shipped to Russia. The mosque is also adjoined by outbuildings erected by Sinan, which gave the whole building the name "Selimiye complex".

The rest of the trip to Istanbul was like driving on the "Highway to Hell". Enormous traffic with many climbs. To make matters worse, a strong crosswind was blowing all the time. This is worse than all the dogs and trucks together! 8 kilometers before Istanbul Tom had his second breakdown on the rear wheel: 2 broken spokes and 1 nail in the tire! If you drive from the south to Istanbul by bike, you need a lot of guardian angels. My adrenalin was completely exhausted by evening. The bike is now in the hostel for a few days. I hope I can get all my visas for Central Asia here in Istanbul ...