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 Author Thread: Turkey
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Turkey
Posted: 12/6/2009 7:59:12 PM
I've been to Istanbul, and to Eastern Turkey (Mount Ararat, Kackar Mountains, Lake Van and Kars). If you wnat to see a place that is way out there, Eastern Turkey is neat. Few tourists, great hiking and you feel a zillion years of history just under the surface.

Catching the train from Turkey to Bulgaria is neat too, you feel like you're stepping back in time to the Iron Curtain era.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 19 (view)
 
Prague
Posted: 11/14/2009 5:52:34 AM
Prague is a great city but expect a ton of tourists, maybe its better off season. Krakow is a great City to visit, sort of a smaller version of Prague, when I went in '97 there were hardly any tourists.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 19 (view)
 
Traveling by jet/Best and Worse Airport
Posted: 10/27/2009 7:51:22 PM
For best food/airline, Wardair rules (a Canadian airline that disappeared a long time ago). Various Asian airlines (Cathay Pacific, Thai and Malay) are good, though Indian Airlines has surly flight attendants. I also like British Airways and KLM (maybe one of hte few that do).

Worst? Maybe its just the planes that get flown down to South America but American, Continental and Delta suck all around. In Ecuador, I was on a flight with Continental that was not only overbooked, but they let too many people on the plane. People were arguing over seats. On my latest flight to Bolivia the ancient American plane had seats that would have been uncomfortable for anyone over 5'4".

One thing all airline do not have is decent beer from a microbrewery. Bud sucks!
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Traveling by jet/Best and Worse Airport
Posted: 10/4/2009 7:53:08 PM
Airports I like:

- Hong Kong - Great airy architecture and though very busy always seems well run
- Kuala Lumpur - again great architecture but a little desolate
- Shlilpol (Amesterdam) love the duty free
- Siem Reap (Cambodia) tiny airport with lot s of character

Airports I don't like

- Altanta - has the charm of army barracks
- Miami - terrible duty free
- Heathrow - has an airplace ever departed on time in the history of that airport?
- Houston - has a feeling of being unplanned, just like the City.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 29 (view)
 
Fellow world travelers? Where have you been, and where do you want to go?
Posted: 8/29/2009 5:52:33 AM
Just a few great travel experiences:

- Being at Ta Prohm temple in Angkor at sunset
- Sunset, then sunrise on the Annapurna Range in Nepal
- Having a few beers outside an old mansion on a canal-laced island in the in the Mekong Delta while the tidewaters almost come up to the mansion
- Riding down the World's Most Dangerous Road in Bolivia, descending into the clouds and noting you can't see the bottom of the sheer drop on one side of the road
- Getting to Trannsylvania on the train at night and finding it as gothic and creepy as it is portrayed in the movies
- Buying an antique schimtar in a casbah out in the desert in Morocco
- A technicolor sunset like you've never seen on Mount Kinabalu, Borneo while fighting altitude sickness
- On the top of Huayna Picchu in Peru, watching Macchu Picchu disappear and reappear in the clouds

A couple more I'd like to experience:

- A tall ship
- Hiking in the Karakorum Range in Pakistan, if it ever settles down there
- Spice Islands in Indonesia
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Darjeeling to katmandu
Posted: 8/6/2009 5:24:52 PM
I am not sure there are trails that go all that way. Thee are a number of good publications out there that could answer that. By bus I heard it is about 24 hours from the Nepal Border to Kathmandu.

An alternative would be to trek to Kanchanjanga base camp from either Darjeeling or from in Nepal. If you really want to get off the beaten path, Makulu base camp would be neat.

As for age, i've done things at 43 that I'd never thought I could do at 25.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 17 (view)
 
Most Overrated Destinations
Posted: 7/30/2009 5:21:27 PM
I know h-a, its an old stereotype, although it is the birthplace of strip malls in Canada.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 5 (view)
 
Most Overrated Destinations
Posted: 7/20/2009 3:26:37 PM
Pisa. Complete tourist trap.

Florida. Dreary urban sprawl.

Scarborough, Ontario. Strip mall capital of the world.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 9 (view)
 
Fellow world travelers? Where have you been, and where do you want to go?
Posted: 7/5/2009 7:21:50 PM
I've been to about 30 countries, I found my last trip (mountain climbing in Bolivia) has temporarily burnt me out from hard travelling, so the next trip may be a little easier (maybe Tahiti?)
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Heading to Rome, any suggestions?
Posted: 7/4/2009 6:11:05 AM
Check out St. Clements chruch near the Colliseum. The current church is 12th Century, you walk down to the basement and you find a 4th century church, then you walk down a further level and find a Roman temple. Gives you an idea how much Rome has been built up over the centuries.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 14 (view)
 
Europe
Posted: 5/10/2009 5:21:18 AM
If you want to visit Europe cheaply, go east young lady. Bulgaria and Romania are cheap and there are far fewer annoying tourists. Also Poland was cheap when I was there (1997).
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Easter in Brussels.
Posted: 4/2/2009 7:30:26 PM
Teh main square in Brussels is very nice. Don't get turned off by the scuzziness around the main train station.


Definietely go to Brugge for a couple of days. Its only about an hour away and its perhaps the best preserved medevil city in northern Europe. Close to the coast, Waterloo and some WW2 sites also. I'd opt for staying in Brugge over Brussels.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
European Trip With Contiki
Posted: 3/23/2009 7:56:15 PM
I was on a couple of Contiki tours about 10 years ago or so. The two tours I took were of Italy and of Eastern Europe.

The good things about them is everything is pretty well planned for you and you never lack of travelling companions. They are also good if you've never been to Europe and want to hit as many highlights as possible. And on any given tour there are a range of people form different countries and different ages (up to 35)

The not so good things about them is that they tend to focus on the major sights (rarely do they go off the beaten path), there are lots of long days on the bus (unless you go on a regional tour like Italy), you may get bored with your travel companions and you are also isolated from the locals.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Peru holiday in June Flight of the condor
Posted: 2/22/2009 3:28:46 PM
Cusco can get chilly at night (around freezing) so you will need something warm. It can rain anytime at Machu Picchu, which is somewhat warmer than Cusco. Definitely bring hiking shoes or boots as Machu Picchu is rather vertical. Don't miss climbing Huaynu Picchu (the steep peak you always see past the ruins) its a blast and has an amazing view. Don't wimp out on this, an octogenarian was climbing it when I was. However they won't let you up if it is raining.

Lima, although on the same latitude as Bangkok, is strangely cool and cloudy most of the year, you may need a jacket.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 3 (view)
 
Ireland?
Posted: 2/7/2009 6:01:58 AM
Dublins good for a couple of days but you will want to head west. Its only a cuople of hours to Galway, which is a great party town with a medevil atmosphere. From there it is easy to get to Aran Islands, Connemera and the Clare coast which are all great. Killarny is very scenic but touristy. Cahir catle (middle of the country) is great too.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 5 (view)
 
Going to Iran
Posted: 1/14/2009 3:29:21 PM
mickeydee is right about Eastern Turkey, hardly any tourists there, has an amazing history that goes back 10,000 years, great (and sometimes stark) landscapes, and climbing Mt Ararat is a blast if you can stand the bureaucracy.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 9 (view)
 
travelling to canada
Posted: 1/13/2009 4:42:52 PM
Definitely go to Banff, Jasper and Yoho parks, great scenery, and they have string of rustic youth hostels that offer cheap accomodation in amazing settings. There is even a shuttle that runs between the hostels.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 3 (view)
 
Going to Iran
Posted: 1/13/2009 4:39:12 PM
I've actually heard mainly good things about it but I am not sure Americans will easily get in. Check with the American government website (not sure what External Affaris is called in the USA).

Other places you could go are Oman, certain parts of Turkey, Syria (supposed to be great with few tourists) or Morocco.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Looking for spots off the beaten path in THAILAND
Posted: 1/9/2009 5:07:37 PM
When I was there 8 years ago Koh Chang was still off the beaten path and was a complete paradise, only some low key developments surrounded by jungle clad mountains and seas swimming with fish.

I've heard its targeted for major development though.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 3 (view)
 
Honest opinion about Romania
Posted: 12/28/2008 3:41:09 PM
I was there in Sept. 2007 and visited Brasov, Sighorsoara and the surrounding countryside and Bucharest. Its not chock-a-block with conventional tourist sites like western Europe often is, but appears to be a great place for hiking (I didn't as I had just climbed Mt Ararat and also it was raining). Also the Saxon villages are really interesting.

For someone visiting Europe for the first time or an inexperienced traveller I am not sure if I would recommend it as the tourist industry is still developing and the country does not have as many tourist sites as other places.

However for someone that has been and is sick of seeing Europe with a million other tourists I would definitely recommend it. There are few tourists there (so few that I kept on running into the same people which was good, I never had to eat dinner or have drinks alone), the locals are interested in talking to you and the country is for the most part not spoilt by tourism.

Bucharest could be a really interesting place if the spent some money on fixing up some of the art deco architecture and creating pedestrian malls. They could lose some of those power trip transit cops, too.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Morroco
Posted: 8/20/2008 3:14:52 PM
The area around Marrakesh, out to Zagora is great, sort of like a different world. For hiking Imlil, near Marrakesh, is a major destination. It will be low season in December but you can still hike. Try to get into the Kasbah de Toubkal there for some neat accomodation. Generally its very expensive but if you show up at the door you may score some cheap dorm lodging.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 7 (view)
 
Young british on tour....
Posted: 6/25/2008 3:38:10 PM
Generally the Brits I have run into seem to be likable. In recent years I 've run into very few Americans (perhaps the places I travel to) but the ones I've run into tend to be pretty cool.

Perhaps the ugliest tourists I've run into have been a couple from Canada.

In Mulu National Park in Borneo, I was staying at a camp deep in the jungle. Among the other groups was a middle aged WASP couple form Ontario, working and living in the Phillipines, travelling with their college age son. The wife never stopped complaining. First complaint was that the guide didn't tell them to bring mosquito netting. They live in the Phillipines, they should know the tropics are full of evil insects. Personally I brought along the netting to stop the foot long centipedes and spiders from cozying up to me in my sleeping bag.

Second, the next morning they joined us in a climb up a mountain to a site called the Picnnacles. The husband had recently had knee surgery, and he was going to attempt a 3 hour, 45 degree climb up the slope. Needless to say he lasted abut 30 minutes.

Third, the continually accused their guide of endangering their lives as their porter ran off to the camp with their water. They didn't think to grab a bottle before he left.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 16 (view)
 
Caves/Caverns
Posted: 6/22/2008 5:16:42 AM
I went to a number of caves in Borneo. One of them, the Deer Cave, has the largest entrance in the world and is populated by 3 million bats.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 3 (view)
 
Commuting to work by bike
Posted: 5/27/2008 7:52:07 PM
I'm doing it at least once a week although weather has not been cooperative. Round trip is around 25 miles and its a great way to wake you up in the morning
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Anyone been to Prague or Columbia in 2007 or 2008?
Posted: 5/5/2008 3:38:15 PM
Prague has been a hot spot since 1990. I was there in '97 and found it overrun with tourists.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 3 (view)
 
Airfare woes
Posted: 4/12/2008 5:20:21 AM
Cruise ships may be the way to go, but I doubt you'll find anything less than $1,000. Perhaps wait until late September, or look out for last minute deals on flights.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 5 (view)
 
Travel Forum!
Posted: 4/7/2008 3:01:33 PM
My latest trip (last year) was to go trekking in the Kackar Mountains in Turkey, then to climb Mt Ararat, then to head back to Istanbul for 3 days, then to backpack my way through Bulgaria into Romania.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Travel Forum!
Posted: 4/7/2008 3:01:25 PM
My latest trip (last year) was to go trekking in the Kackar Mountains in Turkey, then to climb Mt Ararat, then to head back to Istanbul for 3 days, then to backpack my way through Bulgaria into Romania.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
How many pairs of shoes do you usually put in your backpack when you’re leaving for a summer country
Posted: 3/26/2008 7:30:41 PM
Sandals and a pair of hiking shoes. Or you can often buy shoes or flip flops cheap in your destination.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Going to Ireland
Posted: 3/16/2008 6:01:40 AM
The best Guiness to be had anywhere is at the Guiness Brewery. If you get out of Dublin parts of the west coast are amazing.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 12 (view)
 
Talk some sense into me!
Posted: 3/2/2008 3:38:43 PM
No fliping way am I go9ing to talk you out of it. GO FOR IT! Typically any problems you run into will be far outwieghed by the experiences you'll enjoy.

In a nutshell:

NOrthern Europe you'll get away with knowing only English as you will ave no problem finding people that speak it. Still, learn how to say "Hello" and "Do you speak English" in the native language. No problems getting around but it is pricey.

Southern Europe - similar to N Europe but you may run into fewer English Speakers.

Eastern Europe - Places like Czech Republic and Hungary are like W. Europe, but it gets more exotic (and fewer tourists) and the trains get slower in Romania and Bulgaria. This area is still safe and is cheap, you just may have to deal with an occasional bribe.

Turkey - safe, but avoid discussing the Kurdish and Armenian situations. How much farther east are you headed?

In all you will tend to find much of the world safer than your typical American city.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 5 (view)
 
Turkey, any particular places you'd recommend?
Posted: 1/28/2008 7:50:46 PM
One interesting place I was in was Dogubayazit, at the foot of Mt Ararat. Not a pretty town, but the surrounding countryside is beautiful in a barren, desolate sort of way, and the place has a real Central Asian buzz to it. Was on the Silk Road at one time. Marco Polo passed thru and figured Mt Ararat was unclimbable. The Ishakpasa palace on the outskirts of town is nice and ovelooks some 3000 year old ruins. And Mt Ararat is very climbable, but you'll want to arrange it well ahead of time.

Nearby Kars is also neat, mainly for the reason you'll have the place to yourself (and its residents). fe tourists get out this far.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Adventure Vacations
Posted: 1/27/2008 3:58:50 PM
Trust me, when you're hauling y9our butt up to the Dead Woman's Pass you will appreciate trudging into camp and having someone else do the cooking. Don't worry if you're dead at the pass, its mainl downhill from there. If you're camping at the third pass you will have an amazing view of the mountains at sunset.

Don''t miss the walk up Huaynu Picchu at the end, great view.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 32 (view)
 
What make a girl above average!
Posted: 1/21/2008 3:29:27 PM

Now here is another question....how many guys would break up with a girl just because she is clingy?


Yep, because clinginess can be a sign of more serious wacko issues, but not necessarily at your age.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 35 (view)
 
Would you date Britney Spears?
Posted: 1/14/2008 5:47:08 PM
NO. She has never held any interest for me. Neither have most stars or starlets, who strike me us being ultra high maintenance and one dimensional.

But I do agree Brit needs a good, down to earth man. After about 5 years with the shrink. I do pity her though.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Singles Cruises - College Age/Young Adults
Posted: 1/11/2008 4:57:09 PM
I've not been on one but I've heard good things about Windjammer cruises, they tend to attract a y0unger crowd than other lines.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Niagra Falls romantic get-away
Posted: 1/11/2008 4:55:47 PM
Wolfgang Puck right by the Hilton is pretty good.

There is a bar on top of the Hilton called the Watermark, great view, pricey drinks.

No treally romantic but good food at a reasonable price is the Spicy Olive.

Niagara on the Lake and west of St. Catharines is wine country, some wineries have restaurants with good reps.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 19 (view)
 
MEETING SOMEONE
Posted: 1/8/2008 3:30:01 PM
FIRST OF ALL PLEASE DON"T YELL AT US! We can hear you just fine.

I've met a few women and while some were great there has not yet been magique.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 14 (view)
 
lying about age to get searched is still lying
Posted: 1/8/2008 3:26:54 PM
I've seen profiles of a few women where they looked older in their profile pic than the age they stated.

Don't see the point in lying, if you hit it off with someone they will find out, and no, they will not be impressed.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 9 (view)
 
What is the most exotic place you have traveled?
Posted: 12/30/2007 4:31:32 PM
Mekong Delta in Vietnam definitely felt of the tourist path, as did the oasis villages in southern Morocco. Borneo and Cambodia were to other places I've been that felt very exotic.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 4 (view)
 
Former PM of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto assasinated.....Are we really safer with our foriegn policy??
Posted: 12/27/2007 3:51:46 PM
Damn right there is a rat by the name of Mussie, 2 weeks before the election...he or his backers are involved.

She herself had a pretty good idea that she was going to get whacked, its puzzling why she came back.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 14 (view)
 
Uganda
Posted: 12/20/2007 4:18:39 PM
I've always taken Doxycyclene for Malaria. Its relatively safe and effective, and best of all it will not cause you to go insane. You have to take it daily and in some people it may cause some stomach upset (someone up earlier mentioned that). Another advantage is it kills all sorts of other intestinal bugs that you will invariably get.

Most of Uganda is safe but it may be dodgy near Sudan and Congo. The Interhamwe are a bunch of nice guys you never want to meet.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 7 (view)
 
About that backpack .....
Posted: 12/18/2007 4:16:01 PM
Travelling is great....you haul around a backpack the progressively gets more stuffed as the trip goes on, your clothes smell a few days even if they're all clean, you sleep in strange places, deal with strange people, yet 2 months after you get home, you feel you've had the time of your life and are itching to go again.

Cramming your enlarged bulk into those narrow train corridors and taking out a few other passengers is always fun:

A couple of months ago I was catching a train from Istanbul to Veliko Tarnavo (Bulgaria). No one including the conductor knew where Veliko Tarnavo was so I yelled out of the door (in my best Bulgarian) at each of the innumerable stops if this was Veliko Tarnovo. When I finally go a yes answer back at a stop, I ran back to get my pack, ran down the corridor, and crammed myself out of the door of the now quickly moving train, to end up in a pile on the platform with a policeman yelling at me about why the hell I was jumping out of a moving train.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 15 (view)
 
Colombia
Posted: 12/4/2007 4:15:26 PM
If you don't have KRE Insurance just try to look like a penniless bakcpacker.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 11 (view)
 
south america 2008
Posted: 11/26/2007 7:43:57 PM
I've been to Peru and Ecuador on seprate trips.

In Peru I did the Inca Trail an Macchu Pichu (both must sees) as well as Lake Titicaca (neat but the altitude is a killer if you fly up from sea level), a few days in the Amazon and in Lima. About the only thing I wouldn't do again is the Amazon.

In Ecuador I did mainly mountian climbing, but got turned back on Cotopaxi due to an avalanche risk. It is worth getting up a volcano or 2 while in Quito as they surround the city. Quito is a neat but slightly dodgy place to visit, Banos is a great place (do the bike ride down to Puyo) and Otovalo has great shopping.

I may get back to Ecuador in early 2009, to take another crack at Cotopaxi.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
West Papua/Irian Jaya
Posted: 11/25/2007 8:02:18 PM
No I haven't been but please report back if you get there.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
Turkey, any particular places you'd recommend?
Posted: 11/25/2007 7:59:54 PM
Go east if you want to get away from tourists.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 18 (view)
 
How are yout ethics when it comes to this?
Posted: 11/25/2007 7:58:52 PM
The answer is YES, and I have given up my medication before, as well as had others give up theirs for me while on camping trips. Most recently, my roomate gave up most of his rehydration salts when I was under the weather on Mt Kackar in Turkey, and a couple of days from civilization. I repiad the favour to another in our group a few days later on Mt Ararat, surrendering the last on my anti nausea pills.

Non of this involved helping obnoxious louts, but when did that become a rule when someone is in trouble?
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 2 (view)
 
I am going on a trip
Posted: 11/21/2007 4:53:33 PM
You probably wouldn't need Hep B. Its not easy to get unless you have unprotected sex, but avoid getting tattoos and piercings unless you have the shots. I've travelled alot in developing nations but have not worried about the shots.

Hep A, on the other hand is quite eassy to get from contaminated water or food. If you don't have the shots drink only safe water (don't even brush your teeth in unsafe water) and be careful with uncooked food.
 aventurero
Joined: 4/17/2005
Msg: 117 (view)
 
Worst place you ever been?
Posted: 11/11/2007 7:57:07 PM
Here's a few:

New Delhi, India - fascinating but has extreme air pollution and lots of desparately poor beggars.

Niagara Falls, New York - just plain depressing

Pisa, Italy - Worst tourist trap I've seen

Paris, France. I great palce on one level, but is quite a dirty city. Though I've been to places with a much more dangerous reputation, Paris is the only plac eI almost got mugged.
 
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