Whilst travelling you meet the most amazing people and during a well-needed break in Turkey, I met the most inspiring woman who also loves to travel solo.
Like myself, Oznur Cevik was blown away by the stunning region of Cappadocia, a World Heritage Site in Central Anatolia.
Oznur proves that you should just follow your dreams and I for one, think she is an inspiration. Here's her tale of turning fifty in Cappadocia…
After a very long time I decided it was time to take a break plus I was turning fifty something and had to be somewhere nice. While everybody was heading to coasts of Turkey my choice was a place where there is peace and sunshine.
And I got my dream at Ta?konaklar Boutique Hotel in Uçhisar, Cappadocia.
You know how they say it is very hard to explain with words, you simply must live it. Yes, you must live it! No word can explain the beauty or the peacefulness of the place.
Located just above the Pigeon Valley, in which circular holes have been carved as nets for the pigeons, is the longest walkable valley in this area, Ta?konaklar is a dream hotel.
The Greek mythology considers the dove (or pigeon) as the symbol of Goodness of beauty. I highly recommend you to wake up around 6am to watch the sun rise and if you do, as I did, the minute you raise your head to the sky you realize once again, you woke up to a dream to actually live your dream; the sky is full of hot air balloons as if they were taking a promenade between the valleys of Cappadocia, which will take you to another world.
It is beautiful!!
The dream does not end….
On the day I turned 50 something I was blessed to fly with Anatolian Hot Air Baloons’ one of the best pilots Eray. This should be a must for everybody who visits Cappadocia. No words can describe the beauty of the sunrise one gets to watch while up in the air.
Coming back to the hotel….
Surrounded by fairy chimneys, you feel you are a character in a fairy tale.
As you breathe in the clean air, you can contemplate the possibilities for the day ahead: taking in the silence and scenery from your terrace with a glass of local wine or freshly prepared tea; trekking in the valley, horseback riding in the neighboring village, short excursion to the “fairy castle”, trips with expert guides, etc.
Then of course at night another must is to go to Le Mouton Rouge Café-Bar, located in the center of the village – a place full of surprises. Once you enter through a small corridor you find yourself right in the middle of a secret garden. The hospitality one receives from the owner Mehmet Ülkü is beyond words; who attends each guest himself. At wee hours of the night Mehmet picks up his saz (Turkish musical instrument) then all of a sudden from nowhere his friends appear each playing a different instrument and that is when the night starts.
This time with your feet on the ground you start flying over the sky.
Uçhisar is a village that is thousands of years old. An astonishing nature and historical texture that leave you speechless; that makes you wonder, how? How is it possible that giant rocks stand on top of the fairy chimneys as if they were put there deliberately?
Ta?konaklar was built in respect with this nature and history. Every stone, every arch, every old chimney was preserved while Ta?konaklar was brought to life. That’s why not one room is similar to another and each room has its own character, where simplicity is blended with comfort.
An open buffet, waiting for you in the dreamlike restaurant decorated with antique pieces, which consists mostly of homemade food and specialties. This is a must while you are staying at the hotel. You should dine at least once in the hotel.
Staff members of the hotel are the ones who make you feel at home. From the minute you enter Ta?konaklar until you leave they are the ones who show the Turkish hospitality.
Last but not least, without Manager ?adiye Özyurt, I am not sure if Ta?konaklar would be such a dream Hotel. She is the one who makes the details of your stay to become the dream. Well thanks to ?adiye Özyurt of Ta?konaklar Boutique Hotel, Halil Uluer of Anatolian Hot Air Baloons and Mehmet Ülkü of Le Mouton Rouge I did join their fairytale while turning 50 or so, and returned home as if a newborn.
Hope you will too.
Oznur shares her insights on life in Shadows and Light on her website: Ankara Scene