DEMRE - A very UNIQUE place on Turkeys south Coast
Juice, no sugar, no water! The van has been a rocking! You've become a wheel sniffer! Also known as the city of the dead! Like some scene out of a horror movie .... It's a fascinating place! We're Marianne and Chris and we've been travelling full time since May 2018. It is the best atmosphere ever! Whilst attempting to drive around the world in Trudy our home on wheels this happened ... All British travellers abroad are advised, advised to return now. As borders closed around us we decided to wait it out in Turkey until we were able to continue our adventure East Good morning! This morning we are leaving Kas and we're going to be heading about an hour along the coast to the town of Demre. We are! But before we go, somebody spotted on the video that I have a toilet roll holder.
I think it's genius! I thought i'd show it to you! thank you very much my love! There you go, I have a bungee cord! It holds them, if you buy a pack of four you run out really quickly! So i buy a pack of six or eight and then what i do is i hang them on there. Genius! So for those of you that commented saying that we are the cause of the toilet roll shortage in the UK! We only have six of them! In fact there's only five left because we used one! and in Turkey it's the best place to buy toilet roll there's lots of it! Okay let's hit the road! It's so nice, the weather is great the sky is blue today, it's been so windy over the last couple of days we've been blown about a bit and the van has been a rocking! And we've met up with a couple of lovely other travellers, and we should be linking in with them a little bit further along the south coast! So we'll tell you all about them more, but we're feeling really inspired aren't we? And excited! We are! We've been we've kind of thrashing out the the plans, we've really enjoyed our time in Kas, it's definitely one of those places we would recommend staying in. Just everything about it, just a really nice town with a nice seafront, nice restaurants, and not too big, it's still got quite a lot of sort of traditional atmosphere I wasn't expecting to come around the corner this morning and see so many snow covered mountains ! We did hear that Antalya was one of those regions in the world, where you can swim in the sea and then the same day in the afternoon a couple of hours drive later, you can actually go skiing! How many places in the world you can do that? I am sure there are? Comment below! There you go let us know there's other places you know like that, but that's quite unique! Hot and cold all in the same area? i know the sea is so turquoise blue, and i'm in a t-shirt looking at snow! So we just stopped we've just seen a sign saying water. It looks wet it's going to work... Yay ! let's fill her up The chores! Okay that's all done, we're all filled up! Thats the fastest water filling session we have had! The water pressure was really good.
So we're just arriving into the town of Demre .... Right here? right! Right here, that takes us down to the town centre. It looks like a car park! If it looks like a car park, and it has cars in it like a car park, it's a car park ! We've arrived in Demre, parked up but on the way here we could smell a break burning smell, and Marianne's saying that the handbrake which we got fixed in Fethiye now goes all the way up! Let's have a look, oh it's not too bad. I'm sniffing the brakes and the wheels, Of course you are! Yes you've become a wheel sniffer ... i never thought i'd be a wheel sniffer! They're quite hot, that's quite hot that one, they're all they're all hot but then they're going to be hot because the brakes have been on. I think we'll be fine.
We've arrived in the town centre of Demre and the first impression is it's really nice. It's quite quiet today, but they've got this wonderful high street and it's all beautifully clean and maintained. And we're just going to go and have a little look around the shops and just see what's about here, before we head to a little special place that this town is famous for. We've been parked up on the outskirts of Kas wild camping, and one of my favorite bits about coming back into town, is mooching around all the shops and seeing what's there. We don't tend to stay in the town, because obviously it's really noisy and parking is not so easy.
So every village or town has got something different. I love the way you can see the old with the new! Like the old wooden building here on a modern street, with the mosque towers behind, the blue sky looks absolutely wonderful. We've arrived on the main square here in Demre.
Demre is located on the south coast of Turkey, in the Antalya region, somewhere in between sort of Kalkan and Antalya. There's a lot of Turkish flags up being displayed at the moment, because i'm pretty sure when we were in the car park we celebrated Turkish national day. And it's about this time of year. You can see how windy it is today from looking at the flags.
Great thing about dipping into a town that you can pick up bits and pieces. I'm looking for some cream for Chris's neck, some sort of like soothing cream because he's still got his crick in his neck. Although the update from Tim is the mattress for our van is being made which is great ! So walking around Demre you see a lot of this ..... So when we recently visited Patara you will remember that we said Saint Nicholas was born in Patara. Demra is also famous for something about Saint Nicholas .... yes he lived here, back in the 4th century! And this is where he preached, where his church was, you can see it behind us and that's exactly where we're going now! Entry into the church is 50 TL which is about five pounds, and for an extra 40 TL you can get an audio guide which just gives you that little bit of extra information.
Don't be alarmed when they give you the audio guide, if they ask you to leave some ID as a deposit as it is a phone, you can leave your passport or driving licence, they keep it safe in the booth and when you're finished, you give back the phone back and get your id back, otherwise it would be a very good phone for 40 TL! exactly! And the good thing about the audio guide is, there are clear numbers around, so you know which button to press on the audio guide. In fact they give you a map too. This is one of the audio guide numbers that i was telling you about, and they're right next to what it's describing and all the information that it's giving. The thing that is absolutely blowing my mind here though is the floors. The floors are absolutely incredible! I'm actually going to kneel down on the floor to show you this.
These are all individual little bits of marble and stone, that have been cut out and shaped to create these fantastic mosaics, absolutely incredible, the dedication and time to make this is crazy, and it goes all the way along the floor. We've come in this corridor here and there are four crypts, there is this one which is very elaborate and has a lot of detail on it and then there's three more basic ones just here. We've walked into the main chapel area here, i am genuinely blown away! Can you imagine that Saint Nicholas actually preached here? And looking around, it really is a blast from the past! The detail on the floors, the walls, the ceilings ... it's a fascinating place. And for the age of it, is very well preserved. Chris told me to get off the floor, because he couldn't understand why i was staring at the floor! But it really is detailed. It's incredibly, incredibly well maintained and looked after.
And there's a protective roof up there, with this scaffolding to keep the elements from damaging the stonework. That was fantastic and definitely recommended to have a walk round, we remembered to get Marianne's driving license back, good job! We didn't drive off with the audio guide round our neck. This is the first time i've seen this, they've got a little machine where you can put in one TL in, which is 10 pence and it releases some dog food! How cool is that? There's a lot of dog food, there's a lot! I want to see if it works, because there's a lot of dog food! you ready? Yeah! Oh that's very cool, it's like a gift that just keeps giving to the dogs, and it's obviously got dog food that's safe for cats, or cat food that's safe for dogs.
And there's a solar panel on top, so i'm assuming that's what keeps the electric going, or maybe it just lights up at night who knows? But whatever the reason for having a solar panel, i'm absolutely delighted that there is a machine like that, right next to where Father Christmas came lived and gave. Here's another wonderful example of an old building amongst new buildings. I love the look of that, that's absolutely amazing with the handmade bricks! yeah old handmade bricks, a little balcony there, so just walking back to Trudy we saw this sign, it makes us realise how much further we have to drive! Because as the crow flies it's 9210 kms to Tokyo! And the other way it's 8468 kms to New York! We've got a bit of driving to do love! Uh oh! Back at Trudy now, and we were just discussing the legend that is Saint Nicholas ... Father Christmas. Looking up online, there are two stories! The first story that i'm going to tell you is ... There was a gentleman who lived here in Demre, he had three daughters and he couldn't afford to get them married because he couldn't afford the dowry. Saint Nicholas allegedly snuck into their family home in the middle of the night and left three purses of money for the dowry! That's one legend.
So the second story goes like this ... it's the same man, with the same three daughters, with the same financial problem .... But this time he throws some coins down the man's chimney at night, some of the coins land in the socks that were hanging by the fireplace to dry! That's the story I prefer, that sounds cool. So we've just driven a couple of kms north of saint Nicholas's church and we've arrived at the Myra Antik city, it's famous here for there's some ruins a theatre and some famous lyceum tombs.
But this car park we've just stayed in which is actually free, we've jumped out and there's so much fruit look! These are the first bananas i've seen growing in Turkey! There's massive chickens and cockerel ! And then there's lots of oranges! Look at this, look right here, how nice is that? I can't believe all these bananas are growing here! There's a castle at the top there by the looks of it. Looks a bit of a walk, Oh you see the tombs in the rocks there? So we're going to go and have a little look and see what this is about, and then we're probably going to drive down to the beach to find somewhere to park tonight. we've got the solar parked up in the window here facing the sun so it charges while we're out. We've just noticed as well right opposite the free parking here at the Myra antik car parking place, there's water as well. So if you're coming in your van and you need to top up right by the entrance, there's a tap with fresh water. Entrance into the site is 45 TL which is about £4.50,
unless you have a museum card and then it's free. As soon as you come in you can see all the tombs carved into the side of the cliffs here. Of course we found the resident puppy! This is a very impressive looking amphitheater, one of the best preserved ones we've seen i think, and i haven't seen any with these massive archways, you can just imagine horses coming through back in the day.
I think this would have been the stage somewhere here. It's really nice to come out and have a walk around. Sometimes when we're in the van just driving, it's really important just to come out and stretch our legs and spend some time together, isn't it? Absolutely, we always use these filming days are actually like our days off. Filming days are like off days, because we just go out have fun, eat and spend quality time with each other and you! You get to join us! Otherwise we're in the van editing. And with weather like this today, we try and do the work on the rainy days, but it's nice today! And some people have asked how do we plan our routes? And we take suggestions from you guys, you'll message us and say we have to see this and see that! So we have a an e-map that we pin points on and we just mosey along from one place to another don't we? and we just enjoy.
At the moment! at the moment, it's about to pick up pace i think. Oh nearly at the top, oh the dog beat us up! how did you do that? wow ! Look at that! So we had this great big discussion, should we just walk up the steps of the amphitheater? Marianne said .... no no no, go back down and go around, because it doesn't go anywhere! And we've ended up back at the top of the amphitheater! That's true. We're here! But what a view! I don't know how many people this seats, but it's definitely a big one! The area around Demre, there's lots of farming and polytunnels growing vegetables, and from the top here you can really see how many there are on this side of the town. So there's a staircase, we're going to see if we can go a little bit higher? I'm not sure whether it leads to some of those tombs at the top, but we'll give it a go! So right at the top there's a little tomb carved into the rocks here, there is a cave i don't know if it goes anywhere ....?
No stops there. I saw some of these earlier in the amphitheater, is it just me? or are these like a little bit freaky? I think if I had those carved into my walls ... i would move! What do you think? It's like some scene out of a horror movie. It really is !
I suppose because it was a theatre, they have sort of artistic flair with some masks of drama and tragedy, but no, not my cup of tea ! We've seen quite a few Lycian tombs as we've driven down the coast of Turkey. They're still impressive, carved out of the rocks. Here in Myra these tombs are also known as the city of the dead! That's a little bit spooky So we're back to the car park we thought we'd get a couple of cups of orange juice.
Fresh freshly squeezed, are these the oranges grown here? Yeah from here, from Myra garden. Oh amazing, Myra garden, orange garden, Beautiful, fresh juice, no sugar, no water, all natural, only orange. You just can't beat freshly squeezed juice, especially when it's grown right next door. Oh it's delicious. Oh that's very nice, thank you my friend. Open and eating! Very good, it's good eating. ... yeah okay
Bye bye bye, Oh that's so nice. I said they were so tasty and sweet he gave you a couple extra how lovely! Anything coming? All right edge forward a bit. no all clear! Bye! So we've jumped back into Trudy and it's that time of day when we need to go find somewhere to park up for the night. So we're going to head towards the beach because we always like to sleep on the seafront if we can, and apparently Demre has a nice seafront, so let's go and have a look.
Ah we can see the sea, we're down at the seafront. So now we'll just have a look, see where it's nice to park up. So there's lots of options down here, there's lots of parking spaces. There's a couple of little restaurants dotted along, but most of them are closed.
The sea is looking beautifully blue, wild camping isn't a problem here in Turkey. You know there's lots of spaces by the side of the road that we could sleep in. So it's just finding one that gives us a nice view and looks flat, and it's slightly off the road.
There we go That'll do! So i think this is a lovely spot for the night, we've managed to get Trudy flat. We've got nice views over the ocean, and it's going to be a good place to rest up tonight. start that again i can't talk! This one here in Myra ... uh no! What is that?