Welcome to the A to Z challenge, a blog post everyday of April apart from Sundays, covering every letter of the alphabet. My theme is travel, that thing that we haven’t been able to do over the last 12 months, so it seemed appropriate to reminisce about past travels we’ve taken, looking forward to when we can travel freely again.
Today we’re visiting the capital of Scotland, and the ruins of an ancient metropolis in Turkey.
In 2013 my beloved and I headed to Edinburgh as I had a job interview (I wasn’t successful) so we got to explore the city a little. When we booked our accommodation we couldn’t find anything except a slightly dodgy hotel a long way out of the city. The reason is that my interview was in August, when the Edinburgh Festival takes place, and the population of Edinburgh nearly doubles.
It didn’t matter that we didn’t have tickets to any of the shows, there were plenty of street performers to provide free entertainment. The guy on the right was passing his entire body through a tennis racquet – amazing.
There were also buskers providing a soundtrack as we wandered around the city. This young lad was playing his guitar flamenco style and he was incredibly talented. The band were brilliant, and there were several slightly tipsy people dancing in the street.
Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and a word of warning, if you’re going to explore, wear comfortable shoes as the city is very hilly. We took an open top bus tour as when time is short it’s a really good way to see the highlights and choose where you want to get off and explore more. The Palace of Holyroodhouse, pictured below, is the official residence of the queen in Scotland.
We stopped into a café for lunch, with me ordering chicken pie (this was before I became a pescatarian) and this was what I received – the pastry was huge!! Also, it was really cheap, so really good value for money. The café was called Mum’s Great Comfort Food – if you’re ever in Edinburgh I definitely recommend you go there.
In the year 2000, six months after our wedding we had our belated honeymoon on the Greek Island of Samos. One of the advantages of the island is that it’s only 1.5hours by boat to Kusadasi in Turkey. We took the opportunity to do this so we could visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Ephesus.
That doesn’t sound very long, 1.5hrs, but to my beloved who gets very seasick, it felt like an eternity. The entire journey to Turkey he was sat looking at the floor, repeating over and over “I’m on a plane, I’m on a plane” – I don’t think he managed to convince himself, as he turned a lovely deep shade of green. For the return journey, one of the tour guides made him sit outside, and she stayed with us so that the two of us could distract him, and as a result he wasn’t as seasick going back, more a pastel green shade.
The building in the picture below is the façade of the Library of Celsus, which must have been a beautiful building when it was still intact. It apparently used to house over 12,000 scrolls and it was also the tomb of Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus, hence the name of the library. The other picture is the great theatre which our guide told us could seat 25,000 people and it is believed that this is where St Paul spoke to the Ephesians. Performances are still held at the theatre and it must be so incredible to attend one and sit where people have sat since before the time of Christ.
The most amazing thing about Ephesus that our guide told us, is that there is still three quarters of the city to excavate – it must have been huge.
Thanks for stopping by and make sure you visit other bloggers who are crazy enough to be doing the challenge with me – Click Here to visit the master list of participants.
Stay safe and have a fabulous day.
Previous A to Z posts:
2018 – E is for Exploring
2017 – E is for English
2016 – E is for Exploration