Cappadocia and Istanbul -- AMAZING!

Old Aug 28th, 2011, 08:28 AM
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Cappadocia and Istanbul -- AMAZING!

We spent 10 days in Turkey this summer -- here are a few photos I would like to share: http://www.smugmug.com/gallery/18750...073259_vrvQ4Vc

Our accomodations were fantastic -- we stayed at the Empress Zoe Hotel in the Sultanahment area of Istanbul. What a cool hotel -- the decor had such a wonderful "old city -- ethnic" flair to it. Breakfast was fabulous -- especially in the beautiful gardens.

In Cappadocia we stayed at what was probably my favorite hotel of any I have ever been to -- The Esbelli Evi. So many people on fodors recommended this place -- and we were not disappointed. I have added a few photos of their rooms in the photo album.

Thanks to all who gave me such great advice!

Enjoy,
Chicken
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Old Aug 28th, 2011, 09:16 AM
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Wow! very cool post and pictures. Turkey is one of my dream countries I would like to visit. Do you think 10 days was too short or too long? I am sure this is going to be a very memorable trip for you. I would like to visit but only have 6 days beginning of September in between jobs, not sure where to go. What company did you use.
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Old Aug 28th, 2011, 09:35 AM
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We spent three weeks in Turkey and it was clearly insufficient.

And yes Suha at Esbelli Evi is a most gracious host at his unusual but most accommodating hotel.

Suha only gives rooms to people his thinks will be good guests and turns away bores. Thus he does not use any other of the on-line services.
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Old Aug 28th, 2011, 10:13 AM
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We did not use a company. We booked a flight and the hotels arranged airport pickup and drop off for us.

10 days was all we had -- if we could have stayed longer I would have loved to see Ephesus, the Turquoise Coast and Pamukkale. Even so -- I really enjoyed both Istanbul and Cappadocia immensely.
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Old Aug 28th, 2011, 10:13 AM
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We took cabs in Istanbul -- we rented a car and drove in Cappadocia.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 12:24 AM
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chickenlittle, we are planning a 10 day trip to Istanbul and capaddocia in Oct. Could you please let us know which rental car agency you used in Cappadocia? How many days did you spend in Istanbul and Cappadocia? Will 3.5 days be a lot in Cappadocia?
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 08:08 AM
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Chicken, your pictures are gorgeous. Thanks for sharing.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 08:17 AM
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So glad you enjoyed the Empress Zoe as much as I did. A very unique property.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 08:41 AM
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We used Economy Car Rental to rent a car. They are an agency not the actual car retnal company, It worked out very well for us. I picked up my car at Istanbul airport, and drove it to our accomodations in suburbs, then drove into Istanbul every day. Once finished, we drove to Ankara, Goreme (Cappadocia), Konya, Antalya, Kas, Marmaris, Bursa, then back to Istanbul.

We did not spend enough time in Cappadocia. I would have liked 3 or more days. We had only ~1.5 days.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 10:40 AM
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Chicken Little:
Pics are wonderful. Nice to know that Suha ("Bill") is still going strong. We stayed with him when he had been just getting the place into hotel shape...you're right...Esbelli Evi is still on our Top Ten list worldwide.
I'm sure his rates are now far beyond the $40 we paid.

stu tower
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 11:28 AM
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Wow... judging from your pix, we went to a lot of the same places and enjoyed many of the same sights as you. And we loved staying at the Empress Zoe as well. Please tell me you had one of the bartender's "Zoe" cocktails!
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 11:33 AM
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Car rentals were tricky for us in Turkey. At the airport at Kayseri, we left the car with the airport manager but because the car rental rep never showed up. And in Cesme, the rental facility was closed and we would up driving to another town to return it.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 03:18 PM
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Very nice album. I especially enjoyed all the colorful food pictures.
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 04:06 PM
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Adu, we had this same car rental problem also at Izmir airport and had to get another car co. booth to ring them for us then wait. We'll be back next month and will ring ahead to be sure of meeting the rep. Don't want to just leave the car in a carpark!
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 04:23 PM
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Michel-Paris
After Rhodes we are driving up Marmaris to Izmir and area for 2 weeks in September . Would love to get some info on the route..
email us [email protected] if easier than here....Merci
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Old Aug 29th, 2011, 09:05 PM
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Wonderful pictures, thanks for sharing. We are going in May and really excited about it.
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Old Aug 30th, 2011, 07:21 AM
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Thanks for your comments!

Esbelli Evi arranged airport pick up with a shuttle bus. Once we arrived at the hotel, they arranged the rental car through a local person, pick up and drop off of the car was done at the hotel. It was all arranged by Arda -- the hotel manager. He also spent over an hour putting together our 3 day itinerary with personalized maps so we could drive ourselves around.

We stayed for 3.5 days in Cappadocia. It was just enough time to see everything we wanted to see but at an enjoyable pace. I would not have minded staying another day or 2.
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Old Aug 30th, 2011, 09:19 AM
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Beautiful pictures - of the food, the mosques, the Cappadocian landscape, the balloons... everything.
Took me right back to my visit there 5 years ago, and longing to return. Next time I plan to head to the turquoise coast, and further East and north.
Thanks for sharing.
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Old Aug 30th, 2011, 10:14 AM
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Lovely pictures.

Where were you hiking around Gorome? Were you mostly in the Red and Rose Valley? I defintely wish I had spent more time hiking around when I was there in the spring.
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Old Aug 30th, 2011, 12:40 PM
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Axel2DP -- we did a lot of hiking while in Cappadocia. We hiked: Love Valley, Red Valley and Pigeon Valley. (Red Valley at sunset is like a dream)

Other attractions we saw were: Kaymakli; Goreme Open Air Museum; Goreme National Park; Zelve Open Air Museum (wow); Uchisar Castle . . . .we also enjoyed just driving the countryside and checking out the little villages. We had to stop a couple times for cows and chickens crossing the road.
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