In the highlands of Anatolia, lies Ankara, the capital city of Turkey. Whereas Istanbul is one of the most crowded cities in the world, this Turkish city is way more peaceful and relaxed. Ankara is full of history and is definitely worth seeing, if you are interested in a less traditional way of traveling through the country.
The first idea we had, was to go from Istanbul to Ankara and from there on to take the night train to Kars the same evening. Unfortunately, we missed the train in Istanbul and therefore the night train in Ankara. So there was nothing left to do than stay the night and take it the next day.
Because we didn’t expect to go here, we knew nothing about the place. We found a nice hostel, chilled for a bit and went for dinner that evening. It seemed that Ankara had a nice night life! The city itself isn’t as pretty as Istanbul, but it did had a more authentic and relaxing feel to it. There was a nice restaurant were we had some delicious Turkish food and had a stroll through the city.
The next day we wanted to do some sightseeing, but unfortunately I wasn’t feeling well again, so I decided to take it easy and wander around the Ankara Kalesi (castle) and old bazaar for a bit. Where in Istanbul you get bothered a lot on the bazaar, here you can just walk around like a local and have a relaxing stay at the bazaar in Ankara. Comparing to the Grand Bazaar it is of course not that big, but it’s quite cozy and the view at the top provides a nice view over the city.
On top of the bazaar you can find a big parking lot where the sell lots of spices, herbs, fruits and vegetables. There are some gorgeous antique stores in this area and men walk around with homemade bread on their head to sell to salesmen on the market.
Always wondering what is beyond I decided to walk a bit further is this nice little area with colourful houses to see what was over there. There was nobody around, but walking a bit further a lot of children appeared. Not too bad, but when I saw a lot of angry looking men standing on a little square I passed, I decided to turn around again to the bazaar area. Better safe than sorry.
After that walk I went back to the bazaar where I found this very nice looking lunch place with vintage Turkish music and movie posters. Had some delicious Gozleme and after that went back to the hostel again.
So I didn’t see too much of the city and despite not knowing it beforehand, it was still a nice stay in Ankara. There are also plenty of things to see. On MyMerhaba you can find some interesting information about the city!
The same evening we went to the train station to get the night train to Kars!