Today was our last day in Akyaka, so we started with breakfast in the square at Kosi restaurant. It came as part of our accommodation deal, so we just presented a ticket to get a lovely Turkish breakfast of olives, tomatoes, lettuce, rocket, cucumber, honey, fig jam and various types of cheeses. It also came with çay so a double teapot on top of a small burner was placed in the middle of the table. Kosi restaurant was a lovely setting amongst trees overlooking the main intersection which was absolutely perfect for people watching.
After breakfast, we packed the bike said goodbye and headed out of Akyaka towards Kusadasi. Over the past month, the road through the top of the town has been carved up with ongoing roadworks. To join the road to Muğla we had to pick our way through traffic up the hill around piles of gravel, concrete, rubble and sheets of steel reinforcing. It was a real mess.
Heading back to Muğla was nice with great views down over Akyaka as the road zig-zagging back and forth as we climbed over the coastal mountain range.
Coming into Muğla from Akyaka we got a better perspective of how the city is laid out. The urban parts of the city are mostly confined to the hills with the central part of the valley filled with farms of wheat, canola, and fruit. It seemed a smarter way to use arable land.
At Muğla we took the D550 and headed towards Izmir with the road passing through a series of coastal hills. There were millions of olive trees growing throughout the area from the valleys up into the hills.
Not far from Muğla we passed through an area of granite boulders which was just spectacular. A whole area of rugged hills and canyons was just filled with massive granite boulders stacked on top of one another.
At Aydin we decided it was time to stop. It was about 100 km’s from Muğla so roughly halfway from Akyaka to Kusadasi. One thing which was quite interesting was the amount of old Turkfiat tractors for sale. Each of the small tractor outlets had at least six of the bright orange beasts. In Aydin we stopped off at a Maca’s, purely because we knew they had coffee and we really needed one.
Interestingly in Turkey, McDonalds doesn’t have free wifi which may explain the lack of travellers in the more populated areas. The food’s quite expensive, however, young people still eat here.
Aydin is quite a large town which has a large bronze and stone sculpture in the centre with heroic figures of Turkish life. It also has another bronze statue on the way out of town, a statue of figs. Around the town, millions of fig trees grow on the flat up into the lower reaches of the foothills.
We followed the main road for a while until we saw the turnoff for Kusadasi which took us through a small village, not exactly the road we were expecting.
Soon we were winding down the hills towards the coast with Kusadasi spreading out before us. I was pretty surprised just how big it was when I saw the sign with the population of 100,000.
About 1 km from the hotel the road was closed with major roadworks which caused us to go into a bit of a spin. The satnav hasn’t received any updates of road closures and it doesn’t like it when you don’t follow directions. After picking our way around backstreets eventually, we found the main road again and were soon at the hotel where they insisted that we park up near our room.
After settling in we headed to the beach to check it out. The road from the hotel down towards Ladies Beach was filled with bars, small markets and the occasional kebab shop, which at the moment are pretty quiet due to the season. Ladies Beach is set between two headlands and draws its name from an area of unusable farming land which was given to the ladies of the city to use to bathe there.
These days it’s also home to a large community of Irish expats. We walked the length of the promenade which is filled with souvenir shops, cafes, bars and restaurants. It really is a lovely spot on a sunny day with a white sandy beach, beautiful waters and lots of restaurants.
At the Sherwood, we decided to stop for lunch and started chatting to Romeo, one of the waiters. It was a pretty slow day so we spent most of the afternoon chatting finding out about the area, Turkey and his life.\ and enjoying the food they had on offer.
At the end of the day, we watched the sun hurtle into the sea from the terrace of the hotel. With views of the sea, I think we’re going to enjoy our three days in Kusadasi as we explore Ephesus and surrounds.
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