Day 8: The leather factory and the food culture in Turkey

Today was a rainy day and and also the 8th day of our trip. On the morning, we went to a leather factory call Populer Leather. Because Turkey is famous for its textiles and leathers, leather clothes were made there for expensive brands such as Gucci. We watched a fantastic fashion show there, and some of us even joined the show. Those models were wearing different designs of all different kind of the leather clothes, it was a really cool experience. Some of the group members also bought some nice jackets.

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For lunch, we tried the famous local lamb kebab and hand made beef meat balls it was delicious. The most common food in Turkey are those kebabs, there are lamb,chicken and so many different kebabs except pork kebab. Pork is not a common meat in Turkey, since most of the people in Turkey are Muslims. According to Quran, it said that is better for Muslim to not eat pig.

Sunny Guo

Day 7: Village of Sirince and the city of Kusadasi

Today was the 7th day of our amazing Turkey trip. The weather is sunny after yesterday ‘s rain. today, we are leaving the city of bergama and heading to the city of Kusadasi and we will stop for lunch. On the way we saw a lot of olive trees.

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We also stopped to see one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World : the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, but unfortunately there is only one pillar left. Then we went up to a hill and stopped at a small village call Sirince. We saw an abandoned Greek Orthodox Church of St. John there. After that, we had some free time to walk around the village and have lunch.

The village is tiny but is really pretty. This village is famous for its olive oil and olive oil products. Also there were so many cute animals inside the village.

After the village, we had a few mins of bus drive. Then we arrived the city of Kusadasi. The city is wonderful. It is near the Aegean Sea. The view is just incredible. Our hotel is nice and everything is great. What a fabulous day.

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Sunny Guo

Personal thoughts

It has been 7 days since we arrived Turkey! This country is totally amazing, people are kind, food are delicious, culture are characteristic and scenery are beautiful.

The most impressive thing in Turkey for me is soccer. Many people are very passionate to soccer, there are always stores selling soccer jerseys and equipment beside the road. Turkish soccer league is very successful a and attractive, there are 4 renowned clubs in the league. Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe, Beşiktaş and Trabzonspor. (Beşiktaş has just won over English Classic team Liverpool on Europa League, that night Turkish people were so crazy) The comfortable environment and steady economic conditions attract a lot of high-level international players to come and play here. (Wesley Sneijder, Demba Ba, José Sosa…) They also have a successful national team (Which has Arda Turan, Nuri Şahin and Hakan Çalhanoglu).

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The food here is also delicious. Usually they eat lamb and chicken, beef sometimes. It is kind of weird to have a lot of sausage for breakfast, but most of Turkish people do. All the food have high calories, they use a lot of honey while making dessert, and foodstuffs are very cheap compare to U.S, so it will absolutely make you fatter to travel in Turkey for 2 weeks.

Everybody knows that turkey has a long history, that’s why it left a lot of ruins of the old castle and temple. Not only ruins, they also have some tradition skills left, such as manufacturing gem and making carpet. These skills are handed down to the next generation, these intangible cultural heritages will pass and save well.
Turkey is amazing, and I’m looking forward to our trip tomorrow! :)

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Ryan Zhang

Day 6: Visiting Acropolis and Jewelry store

Today was the 6th day of our Field Academy trip in Turkey. We reached Bergama yesterday evening. After having a nice breakfast, we headed to Bergama Acropolis Archaeological Site. We took cable cars to the top of the mountain. We have seen a lot of stones, fragments and marbles, and which were used to be parts of the Acropolis. We walked around to view more. We saw the architectural fragments and elements on the ground and upon the hill, which were here belong to Trajan’s Temple(2nd C AD). Although it was destroyed and collapsed as time passed, several parts and pieces of the temple was restored on the original find-spot. Those elements and fragments attracted and gave us a strong impression of the talent that ancient people had. During our free time in the site, we hugged the 2000 years columns and marble pieces, and also we took our group photos. According to the introduction from our tour guider, Suleyman Karaz, there were huge substructure underneath the ground such as arches. The reason why people filled the hillside was that they wanted a flat are in order to build this temple. Thereafter, we saw a enormous ancient theater, which had the capacity of 8000 people. It was so amazing but steep. After we saw several other impressive places, we took cable cars again back to the bottom of mountain.

We had lunch and went to the Gold, Silver, Jewelry and Onyx Factory. It was a small workshop and there were was a big store behind it. The manager of this workshop introduced some machines and stones to us. His father also polished a round marble and made it smooth as a gift to us. We appreciated that. In this store, we saw plenty beautiful and attractive jewelries. Some of us bought some for themselves or others.

Doris Zhu

Photos from Day 5 at Troy

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Walking through the ancient walls of Troy VI

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Viewing the Orchestra as described by our tour guide Suleyman

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Jhané examining the ancient ruins of Troy

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The group heads to one of the highest points in Troy to view the fertile land and the Strait of Dardanelles that made Troy’s location so ideal.

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Venturing through the ancient ruins at Troy

 

Day 5: Leaving Istanbul and visiting the ruins of Troy

Today is our 5th day in Turkey. We got up very early and set up at 7:26.

It was a long and tiring day, we stayed on the bus most of the time. Bus stopped every two hours, and everybody was sleeping.

At 12:00, we stopped and had some delicious and authentic Turkish food.

At 14:00, we stopped at the ruins of Troy and looked around. Our tour guide led us walk around with professional and detailed commentary. We saw how Trojan defend their land through the specific designation of the city wall. Ancient people were also intelligent at that time, especially on constructing defense.

After sightseeing the Ruins of Troy, we had a 3-hour car journey to the hotel.
This hotel is better than last one. Rooms are cleaner and have better equipment.

Today was kind of normal compare to other days in the trip, we spent 80% of time on the bus. Everybody is energetic after a long sleep on the bus. We are ready for tomorrow! Love this country!

Ryan Zhang

 

Day 4: Another special day in Istanbul with everyone

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Today was the 4th day of Turkey trip and it was the last day of staying Istanbul, though we will come back to Istanbul at the end of the Turkey trip. We left the hotel at 9 just like yesterday. We visited the Topkapi Palace Museum first, which is located right next to the Blue Mosque that we visited yesterday. Our tour guide handed us ticket for the museum and gave us simple information about the palace. Palace represented the center of the government and covered by water. It was consisted of 4 main gates, 4 courtyards and a Harem. Each courtyard represented different hierarchy. As the courtyard placed in deeper portion of the palace, it was more important and higher place. As we entered into the museum, we could see enormous gates with great gorgeous decorations, which showed us how great the palace is. First courtyard looked very peaceful. But from second gate, constructions began more complicated. Our tour guide told us that only people related with palace were allow to enter from second gate. Also, people used to cut off the head of people who against the palace and hang those on the second gate, so that people could notice how bad against the palace was. In the second courtyard there was a tower of justice, which people believed that they could see all the world on the top of the tower. The third gate was covered by gold color mark, which presents the power of the government. Our guide told us that Turkish government was stronger than Europe government because every power of Turkey focused on the king whereas Europe divided their power to the noble. There were four rooms in third courtyard for protecting all the treasure and gold. We could see beautiful and big diamond, daggers and gold in there. Fourth courtyard was the most beautiful courtyard out of those four. We could see the ocean and the Istanbul city at the fourth courtyard, could also see the beautiful circumcision rooms covered with rare specimens of Ottoman tiles. These rooms were for high governors to debate about laws and other political issues. Also, the tiles meant that they were influenced by Far-eastern ceramics. There were many things that we have never experienced before. The palace was very good chance to feel the Turkish culture.

Next, we moved to the Taksim, a place for shopping. It was very different from the area that our hotel is located. Many people, foods and shops were there. We got 2 hours of free time. It was one of the best free times that we’ve got.

After Taksim, we went to the Grand Bazaar market. It was very similar with Spice Market that we went yesterday. But it was bigger and more crowded. Many people from each shop tried to approach us with fun jokes and different language to attract us. I think that is part of the Turkish culture, which is good and friendly.

It’s only fourth day of the Turkey trip, but it feels like we already stayed in Turkey for a week. As time goes, we can feel the culture of the Turkey. Every single moment with my friends in the Turkey is so valuable and unforgettable! I can’t wait another days in Turkey.

Jadon Han