Haines on train travel:

Mar 30th, 2007, 04:38 PM
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Haines on train travel:

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Mar 30th, 2007, 04:39 PM
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Walks in London:

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Mar 30th, 2007, 05:34 PM
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Author: Meredith
Date: 02/06/2007, 11:02 pm
Hi, all,

I'm just beginning to research a trip to Turkey and have a question about domestic airfare within Turkey. About how much should I expect to pay roundtrip from Istanbul to Cappadocia (Kayseri) in May? Right now, all I'm finding is about $369 on Turkish Air - I'm not sure if that's normal, but it seems high to me.

Any advice on budget airlines I should check into? I know Atlas Jet and Onur Air are two options, but I'm not having much luck with them right now either.


Author: ben_haines ([email protected])
Date: 02/07/2007, 12:39 pm

You can do it for 71 Turkish lira in a one-passenger sleeping car.

If you search under Man in Seat 61 Turkey, then click on travel within Turkey, you will find that trains leave the Asian side of Istanbul daily except Wednesday at 2005 and reach Kayseri at 1428. They have single and double sleepers, and restaurant cars. The fare in a single bed sleeper is a little under 51 US dollars or 71 Turkish lira. The pages on Turkey rightly say that the trains are good. If you took a morning plane from Istanbul you might leave central Istanbul at 0700, leave Yesilkoy airport at 0900, reach Kayseri airport at 1000, and reach central Kayseri at 1100. You would pay for a hotel night for your stay in Istanbul, till the plane flew next morning. The sleeper is convenient and gives good views of the country, the train is secure you lock your own cabin), and so long as you bring on board your own peanuts and wine the restaurant car is good, and cheap (it serves beer). The pages on Turkey list agents with whom you can book, but also you can go to Istanbul Sirkeci and book at the window: the clerks use English.

Few people on this forum know Turkish sleepers, so please write again if I can help further.

Ben Haines, London
[email protected]

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Mar 30th, 2007, 05:42 PM
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London is not cheap but here are a few tips to help. On arrival you can buy a two-zone travel card for a week: it costs about 16 pounds and covers tube, bus and local rail.

The great free museums are the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery (much better than Madame Tussaud's) both on Trafalgar Square, and the British Museum (I especially like the Roman British Room and the Sutton Hoo ship burial). At other museums you can look at the price of the London Museum's white card (which has a web site, too) and decide whether you would go to enough museums to make it worth buying. St Paul's Cathedral and Westminster charge tourists for entry, but you can see quite a bit if you find the times of Evensong and go to that (when entry is free)- though of course you have to stay in one place and listen, and they pass a collection plate past you. Just south of St Paul's Cathedral is the City tourist information kiosk. If you ask for the list of City music, lectures and services you'll find a fair amount of classical music offered free in churches in the City (which means in the business district) twenty minutes walk from your hostel. There's a collection plate, but the church people know about the impecunious young. The Church of St Anne and St Agnes a hundred yards north of St Paul's, is especially beautiful, friendly, and good at music. They are American Lutherans, and the church is by Wren. You can get a brochure for them at the kiosk by St Paul's. Even the Tower of London (admission £10) is (I think) free if you phone on a weekday; get the time of morning service on Sunday at the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula, and turn up twenty minutes early to attend that. It is traditional and English, and has ignored all developments in the Church over forty years. Other free jazz and classical music is on offer about six on weekdays at the Barbican and the Royal Festival Hall, in the foyers. There are free music and sometimes plays at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama next to the Barbican: you could phone them for info. That's the only theatre that's free, but on Monday evenings and at weekday matinees (except at the National Theatre) you can arrive an hour before curtain up, pay a student concession price of £8 or £10 , have lunch or supper in a nearby pub, and probably find that you've been moved from the cheap gallery (the Gods) to the best one, in seats at the back. It is quite done to wait until lights start to dim, and move quietly forward to a better seat two rows behind the people who paid £25 for their seats.

Other cheap theatre is on the Fringe, listed in the weekly magazine "Time Out", which you can buy in the news shop in the concourse of your arrival airport to read on the long dull train trip to central London. (This also shows you which museums and galleries are free). There's much of dramatic interest in the Committees of the House of Lords and of the House of Commons. You can look them up now on http://www.parliament.the-stationery-office.co.uk, then in London can phone, get them to give you titles, and choose which to go to. This way you get to see the flamboyant Victorian interior of the Palace of St Stephen (the House of Commons). You go to the public door to Parliament, tell the police officer on duty which Committee you mean to attend, go through the X-ray check, and walk straight past the queue to the Central Lobby and up the great staircase to the Committee Rooms Corridor, where you find your room, slip in, and listen for an hour. Nearly all public lectures are free. The ones you might like best are at the National Portrait Gallery, and you can find them listed now on http://www.npg.org.uk/lecindex.htm. In the kiosk at St Paul's you can find whether there are free lectures in the Museum of London, north of St Paul's, during your stay.
Ben Haines, UK (Jan 99)

Visitors to London with special academic, professional or hobby interests may find that there's a tiny museum exactly tailored to their field.

University College London is the oldest college of the University, founded in 1826 to offer university study to Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Baptists, Unitarians, Jews, Atheists, and all others: Oxford and Cambridge were then open only to Anglicans (that is, to Episcopalians). Over the century the college gained a handful of small museums.
Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology. Phone 0171 387 7050 extension 2884
Museum of Classical Archaeology. 0171 387 7050 extension 2872
Grant Museum of Zoology and Comparative Anatomy. E-mail [email protected]
Geology collections. E-mail [email protected]
The College Art collections. 0171 387 7050 extension 2540. Fax 0171 813 2803 Auto-Icon (Clothed and seated body, with wax mask, of Jeremy Bentham). Displayed daily.
Ben Haines, UK (Nov 98)
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Mar 31st, 2007, 02:19 AM
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thanks so much, cigalechanta
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Apr 1st, 2007, 12:22 PM
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topping for those who missed this.
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