Phrygia

Feedback from travelers recently returned from Turkey: what's good, what's bad, what they found

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David Morgan
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Phrygia

Post by David Morgan » Mon May 18, 2015 12:53 pm

I spent a couple of days looking for Phrygian sites last June. I stayed in Afyon at the Çakmak Marble Hotel which was fine apart from one loud wedding party evening. They have a basement garage which was handy for the motorbike. And an excellent view of the fortress from the breakfast terrace on the top floor.

After visiting the nice archaeological museum, I did what seemed an endless ride along a boring main road to visit Pessinous, which wasn't quite as interesting as I wanted it to be.

The next day I headed up to Aslantaş, Yılantaş and Maltaş monuments and then to Kümbet and then Midas Şehri and back via Aslantaş again, to get the last of the sunlight on the lions - here's a photo. It's important to get the light right at these monuments, you need to visit Midas Şehri in the morning for the sun on the huge relief there.

I was going to stay longer but the rain came in and I fled to the coast. It was good to have seen all the poppies in the fields as well.
Lots of Phrygian sites still on my to-do list, though.


SwampeastMike
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Re: Phrygia

Post by SwampeastMike » Sat May 30, 2015 10:57 pm

Thanks David! You gave me great ideas for a return visit to the area!

Odd that we had the same experience at Çakmak Mable Hotel--fine except for a loud wedding party. It's difficult for noise to disturb me but something about the design of that hotel actually seems to amplify noises from atrium-like central area where the big parties are held. Oh, but that view of the fortress from the terrace is GREAT! Since you mentioned being rained out I hope you got to see the fortress when it is wet and nearly ebony black.

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David Morgan
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Re: Phrygia

Post by David Morgan » Sun May 31, 2015 4:53 am

Cheers, Mike. Apart from the rain, it was a good time to visit, with all the poppies in the fields and a lot greener than when I'd last visited in Sept. '93.

I would stay at that hotel again, but I would make a reservation for an outside room instead of just rocking up.

I didn't climb up to the fortress this time. I had intended to stay a few days longer but riding around in the rain is not fun. I would have gone over to Aizanoi and I've got a load of other sites marked on my Google Earth. As usual, distances in Turkey are always greater than you think - next time I'll be better prepared, probably by loading up a GPS device with the site coordinates. I turned off at one brown signpost but I don't think I found what it was pointing to, although there was one rock-carved tomb I spotted along the track.
The map given to me by the guys at Midas Şehri (printed by Eskişehir province tourism) is much better than the one they gave me at Afyon archaeological museum. And I also noticed quite a few Phrygian Way signposts.

Definitely a nice area to explore, interesting scenery.

SwampeastMike
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Re: Phrygia

Post by SwampeastMike » Sun May 31, 2015 9:45 pm

Glad I'm not the only one who has followed brown signs to be uncertain if I found what they're about! I truly believe that they should erect some "You are here" signs as well!

Do try to make it to Aizanoi someday. It is spectacular.

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David Morgan
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Re: Phrygia

Post by David Morgan » Fri Jun 05, 2015 12:12 am

Sometimes I think there are missed tourism opportunities in Turkey, in contrast to the mega AI developments on the south coast. I reckon Kümbet would be a good place for a pension - take advantage of the "Phrygian Way".


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