A non event at Troy and a great tour of Gallipoli.
Sunday 10 April 2011 - Tuesday 12 April 2011
Sunday 10 April - An early start from Selçuk in order to get to Gallipoli. We stopped at Troy (well, what is referred to as Troy. No one is really sure if it exists at all. Alli, the truck's resident archaeologist, says that Heinrich Schliemann found a set of ruins to fit his theories, rather than doing it the other (and correct) way around). We did not go in as they wanted lot of money for nothing much, but we managed to get a photo of the back end of a wooden horse.
The back end of a wooden horse.
From there we drove onwards to Çanakkale, the ferry port from Asia to Eceabat in Europe. The camp site was right on the beach next to a cafe that had a really good fireplace, loud music and dodgy staff.
Monday 11 April - More bad weather overnight and it rained all morning. Given that it was the final day of the tour we had to give the truck a very good clean, fill the water bottles, scrub the seats, wash and dry all the pots, pans and cutlery and so on.
After lunch we had a guided tour of the Gallipoli sites. We joined up with another small group that had come down from Istanbul and an excellent guide. He told the whole story in such a way that you could really understand the reasons why the campaign was being fought, where the main actions were taking place and the characters involved. The guide was one of Turkey's leading experts on the campaign and he attends conferences regularly on the subject.
The speech given by Ataturk in 1938.
A statue depicting a famous incident during the campaign.
Lone Pine, the main Australian memorial.
Flowers at Lone Pine.
The view off the top towards Suvla Bay.
The main Turkish memorial on the peninsula.
The NZ Memorial and that of Ataturk at Chunuk Bair.
The New Zealand memorial at Chunuk Bair.
The view from Chunuk Bair towards the Dardanelles.
There were a couple of people in the other group who did not have a clue. They had no concept of why the campaign was being fought and even after listening and asking stupid questions, still had no idea as to why it was so important for the Allies and in particular New Zealand and Australia. We ignored them. The young British guy and Frenchman were, on the other hand, much more in tune with the situation.
Back to camp, a nice dinner off the truck, a couple of incidents involving the dodgy staff at the cafe and another cold night in my tent.
Tuesday 12 April - The final day. We drove to Istanbul and after leaving the truck in a parking area, were deposited at the Sultan Hostel in the centre of Istanbul.
Dawn over the Dardanelles, taken from Eceabat.