I’ve been in the UK for work and catching up with friends but I was missing my usual escape to warmer climates over the winter months.
Whilst the pandemic continued to impact everything in most countries, more strict lockdowns were being re-introduced in Spain and Portugal and I also got word of some motorhomers being chased away or had their vans graffitied in Portugal. It also seemed difficult to travel through France.
So… I drove to Turkey! It was not as long a drive as you might think. I broke it up with stops in Germany, Hungary (where I could park in the garden of friends), Serbia, Bulgaria and then Turkey. I got lucky with the weather and only had a little bit of snow in Germany and no ice / freezing in the daytime.
Some might say it’s irresponsible of me to be travelling during a pandemic. I can understand that. However I’m on my own (apart from Olli obviously!) in the motorhome and have minimal contact with others. You can travel responsibly and safely!
It is so good to be back in Turkey! I’ve been before, and it’s so amazing to again immediately experience the warm hospitality of Turkey. And they love my new motorhome! I get lots of honking and thumbs up from those driving past and wherever I park people walking past tell me how nice my motorhome is!
And of course Olli is the star again, the locals find it very funny that he gets such a luxurious ride. The customs officer at the border though basically did a backflip out of the motorhome after stepping in to inspect it without knowing about Olli. Ha!
Wildcamping is allowed in Turkey and safe. I always ask locals when I’m stopping in a neighbourhood if it’s OK and in most cases they will not only say it is absolutely fine, they might offer you food or check on you in the morning!
I skipped Istanbul (and ideally avoiding cities during the pandemic) by routing down to a ferry crossing at Canakkale, which was interesting (from a how many cars can we squeeze on here perspective!) but well worth it.
Now I’m heading down the Izmir coast and ideally get to my friends Erik and Joke near Manavgat for Christmas. You can follow my journey at http://www.polarsteps.com/rvnomading if you want.
There is an evening and weekend curfew here and so for weekends I’m trying to stay in campsites. The evening curfew does mean the parking lots are much quieter than usual which makes for a great night’s sleep, but does take away a bit of that Turkey vibe. Oh well.
Overall, it’s just so nice to be back in Turkey – the plan is to stay here for at least 3 months.
I wish and yours a very merry Christmas and a much much better 2021.