Welcome to Science Jim on Tour!

Hi folks, welcome to the Science Jim and family travel blog. We're touring Turkey! Why Turkey?!?!? It has housed civilizations for over 6000 years!!! Have you heard of Troy...it's in Turkey! Constantinople...it's in Turkey! The eternal flame of Olympus...it's in Turkey! That's just for starters!

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Exploration of Ancient Ruins

Unfortunately I don't have much time to post and we're about to board a ship for four days so I'm not sure if I'll be able to post over the next few days or not.

This pic was taken in Olympos. This area was an city some 2500 years ago and there are tons of cool ruins and tombs to discover. I took some nice video and I'll post it up when I get a chance.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sponge Bob in Turkish

Thought you guys might enjoy watching Sponge Bob in Turkish!


Second Photo from Kaş Beach

Trek Along Kaş

There is a long trail in Turkey called the Lycian Way. It's similar to the Appalachian Trail in the U.S. (not nearly as long though). We hiked about 3 hours of it along the coast of Kaş. Along the way, we past two ancient tombs that had been broken into. I would have taken a picture, but I was too busy holding onto the rope that kept me from falling off the 8 inch ledge that kept me from the 200 ft drop. Trust me though...it was pretty cool!!! Along the way we came across 3 beaches. We swam in each one. This pic and the next one are from the prettiest. One hike, two ancient tombs, amazing views over the Mediterranean, and a dip in 3 crystal clear beaches...not a bad day!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Another sunset over Kaş

Sunset over Kaş

This is Meis

Sorry, wrong picture. This is Greece's Meis. The last pic was the coast of Turkey.

A View from Kaş

Well, we are in a charming little town called Kaş (pronounced cawsh). It's right on the edge of the Mediterranean and that island you see in this picture is Meis which is part of Greece. It's a bit hot here but just gorgeous. This is where we took the sea kayaking tour in the last post. The next pics will be sunet from the roof top restaurant.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Horseback ride in Capadocia

Last one....just incredible huh?!

Us On Top of the World (Horseback ride in Capadocia)

Horseback ride in Capadocia

This dog followed us the entire way!

Horseback ride in Capadocia

Horseback ride in Capadocia

Horseback ride in Capadocia

Horseback ride in Capadocia

An Unbelievable Horseback Riding Trip

This day is going to be hard to beat. We rode horses for 9 hours (with a couple of breaks) over the most wonderful landscapes on Earth. Some sore muscles, but it was worth every moment. Check out these pictures.

Our Hotel in Ügup

This is the hotel room we stayed in. It's carved out of rock!

A Horrifying Trash Can

For some reason these are the trash cans on the streets of Ügup.

Great shot of the kids in Turkey

The Muslim call to prayer

Here's a video of the Muslim call to prayer that I shot on top of an underground city and among thousand year old buildings. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBPiKDhW5zE

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A View from atop an underground city.

Check out this video that I shot from atop an underground city. The houses in the video are any where from 150 to ??? thousand years old. We had just finished touring an under ground city that used to hold some 5000 folks! The underground city was 5000 years old. Sorry, I couldn't get any good shots from inside the city. It was just too dark. Here's a link with some good ones.


Here's the video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pw-feUJKQV4

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Another one inside the palace

Another one

There are so many artifacts that they are just laid out on the ground!

Great pic of Istanbul...the Asian side

This pic is from one of the balconies of the palace. What a view!

Istanbul is the only city in the world to cover 2 continents. Asia and Europe. We stayed on the Europe side. The Asian side is more of a typical city.

Pic of Ben and Sarah inside a very old tree.

For history buffs...

This shows the extent of the Ottoman Empire over the years.

This is the entire layout of the place.

Topkapi Palace

Sorry I haven't posted in a while. We had an overnight train trip (sleeper car) and got in late last night. I'm a bit behind in posting so this photo is actually from a couple of days ago. We visited another incredible place called Topkapi Palace. It has been the home of sultans for centuries. Here are several pics. They don't do the place justice.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

More Hagia Sofia

Check out the Christian and Muslim symbolism. (Sorry it's sideways).

More Hagia Sofia

Check out the stone work on these walls.

Hagia Sofia

Today we visited one of the most amazing buildings in the world. Not only is it huge (you could fit the Eiffel Tower into it) but at one time it was the most important Christian church in the world, and at another, the most important muslim mosque. It is over 1500 years old and is filled with Christian symbolism as well as muslim symbolism. I'll be posting more pics over time of this amazing building.

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Grand Bazaar

Today we basically wandered around a lot but two big highlights were the Grand Bazaar and the hostel party. Have you heard about the Mall of America? Well, the Grand
Bizarre is the Mall of the World! Here's a link with great info and better pics then I could get.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Basilica Cistern

Wow, this was something!!! Check out this link for better pics and more info Basilica Cistern

It's a HUGE underground building made for holding millions of gallons of water. It was created 1500 years ago by the Byzantine Empire to provide water for the folks who lived in the area. There were several other folks down there with us but they weren't, it would have been quite spooky!

Photo of the Blue Mosque

Blue Mosque

One of the places we went to today is called the Blue Mosque. It was built in the 17th century by Sultan Ahmet. It's huge and beautiful. This movie barely does it justice. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y59oXK9xJUs

Arrived in Turkey

This is us as we just got off an 11hour plane trip. We're a little confused....


First views of Istanbul.

Video from our hotel room window in Istanbul.


Sent from my iPad

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Arrived in Turkey!!!!!

Well, we are here safe and sound! The flight was 11 hours long. It began at 11:00 PM Eastern time and we got to Turkey at 4:30 PM Turkey time. They served us dinner at 2:00 AM Eastern and breakfast at 7:30 AM Eastern. Once we got out of the plane, it was 4:30 PM local time...1.5 hours to dinner. So basically, we had a day that was 7 hours shorter then usual. So far turkey is wonderful. Everyone is chatty and, so far, speak English OK. I shot some video but I'm having a hard time getting it too show up on the blog. That's why you may be getting strange posts and repeat posts. Sorry about that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sarah and Mary Beth in Hijab

Our Turkish friend Ayşenur showed Sarah and Mary Beth how to wear head scarves A.K.A hijab.

Turkish friends

You'll recognize most of these folks but the two that you don't are Ayşenur and Gazi. They are two friends of ours that live in NC but come from Turkey. They helped us a lot with trip prep and the language.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The other itinerary is actually more accurate but this one give more details as to what we'll be doing!

June 15th: Arrival in Istanbul. You will be met at the airport by our colleagues and transferred directly to your hotel.

June 16th: Free day in Istanbul.

June 17th: Free day in Istanbul.

June 18th: Free day in Istanbul.

June 19th: You will take a morning bus to Bursa, and upon your arrival you will have to make your own transportation to your hotel, which is easy to reach by taxi in 10-15 mins. Free day in Bursa. Accommodation in Bursa.

June 20th: Free day in Bursa. You can visit Karagoz Museum on your own, which you reach there in about 30 mins on foot, and in 6-7 mins by taxi. Accommodation in Bursa.

June 21st: Free day in Bursa. You will take overnight bus at 22:00 and depart for Cappadocia.

June 22nd: You will reach Cappadocia after about 10hrs bus ride, and arrive there at around 08:00. You will be met at the bus station and transferred to your hotel. Free day in Cappadocia. Accommodation Cappadocia.

June 23rd: You will be picked up from your hotel at around 08:30 for horseback riding tour. Your ride include visits to some of Cappadocia´s incredible cultural treasures such as Byzantine churches carved inside the caves, fascinating underground cities or the area's traditional craft making centers. During the tour, you will ride through beautiful Swords Valley, Rose Valley, White Valley, Pasabag, Uchisar and Goreme. After the tour you will be transferred to the bus station to catch the overnight bus to Antalya.

June 24th: You will reach Antalya bus station in the morning. You will be met at the bus station and transferred to your hotel in Antalya. Free day in Antalya. Accommodation in Antalya.

June 25th: You will go to the bus station in the morning and catch a bus to Kas. You will arrive in Kas in the afternoon and check-in at your hotel. Accommodation in Kas.

June 26th: In the morning, you will meet with the group at around 08:30 at the pier for sea kayak tour. You will paddle through Sunken City of Kekova, Kekova Island and Simena. You will return to the pier at around 16:00, and return to hotel. Accommodation in Kas.

June 27th: Free day in Kas. Accommodation in Kas.

June 28th: Free day in Kas. You will take the local buses to reach Olympos, and go to your hotel Olympos. Accommodation in Olympos.

June 29th: Free day in Olympos. Accommodation in Olympos.

June 30th: Pick-up from the tree houses in Olympos between 10:00-10:30. Bus transfer to the archaeological site of Myra, and to Demre for the St-Nicholas Church when requested, shopping, banking and lunch. Boat departure from the harbour of Demre between 1 and 2 p.m. Pirates Cave (sea conditions permitting), Sunken City of Kekova (this Lycian-Roman archaeological site is protected, so only looking!). Simena, a traditional Turkish fishing village with no car access and Byzantine/Ottoman castle. In Gokkaya Bay optional water sports are available. Dinner, relax in this pirates haven or party the night away at the Smugglers Inn. - First night on board.

July 1st: Breakfast. Departure to Kas. A swim stop in a nice and quiet bay in front of the little town. Lunch. Visit of this charming fishing village. Of ancient Antiphellos, as Kas was once known, only Lycian rock tombs & sarcophagi and the Roman theatre are left. But the charm of the town remains! Near Kalkan we stop in Aquarium or Firnaz Bay.(breakfast, lunch and dinner on the deck) - Second night on board.

July 2nd: Around sunrise we depart for Butterfly Valley where we stop (sea conditions permitting!) for breakfast, swimming and to visit this natural reserve, hosting 136 kinds of different butterflies and moths. Oludeniz (The Blue Lagoon) is our next stop, again sea conditions permitting! Option for paragliding available. Lunch. Last stop of the day is St-Nicholas Island. Byzantine ruins, swim. (breakfast, lunch and dinner on the deck) - Third night on board.

July 3rd: Departure for Samanlik Bay for swimming. Finally we sail to Fethiye Harbour where we arrive between 3 and 4 p.m. You will be picked up from the harbour and transferred to your hotel in Fethiye. Accommodation in Fethiye.

July 4th: Departure from Fethiye to Pamukkale. Accommodation in Pamukkale

July 5th: Free day in Pamukkale. Accommodation in Pamukkale.

July 6th: In the morning, you will be picked up from your hotel and transferred to Denizli Airport to catch the flight to Istanbul departing at 08:40. You will arrive in Istanbul at around 09:45, be met at the airport by our colleagues and transferred to your hotel.

July 7th: Free day in Istanbul.

July 8th: Free day in Istanbul.

July 9th: Free day in Istanbul.

July 10th: You will be picked up from your hotel at a time according to your flight time and transferred to the airport.