We stopped at Van for a while to visit the old castle and get something to eat. Setting for Ercis the ride was pleasant. The mountain scenery, the granaries, the cows, the shepherds whistles… Some of them just wanted to talk to us, some others asked for a cigarette or money…
Before Ercis we found a crossroad for Maradiye, Dogubayazit and Iran. A fascinating route started for about 100 km. First we came over small agricultural villages and hamlets. Green fields, aromatic flowers, a brooklet, small waterfalls… As the altitude was getting higher the vegetation was less. Then, we saw a rocky area full of stones looking like cold lava! It was spectacular!!!
We passed the first military check-point and we reached the highest point… more than 2,644 m. That is the highest point I personally reached with my motorcycle! We were next to the border with Iran. We could see the military points on the top of the mountains around us.
Continuing our way we faced the famous Ararat Mountain. Absolutely impressive! Unfortunately, the top of that mountain was not discernible because of the clouds…
Some 20 km before the limitary city of Dogubayazit (Iranian borders) we reached the national road network that leads to the inland of Turkey. Following the east direction we were heading for Erzerum. The distance till the last destination of the day was 290 km.
The landscape was monotonous but interesting too, through mountains without trees or any kind of plants. We were driving between 1,500-2,100 m altitudes.
The negative part was again the road works and the fact that we were very tired. The sun was coming down and the driving was getting tiresome. The situation got better after Eleskirt.
We arrived at Erzerum around 07.30 pm… a beautiful, settled city, full of students. The streets were full of people. We saw many military camps (in and out of the city), but also nice parks full of lights. Three young guys volunteered to help us find a place to stay. They gave us some options but we at the end we were not able to find any of them. We ended up to Otel Serhat (40YTL/double room), a simple and barely cheap hotel at the centre of the city. Then, we found a cozy tavern and ordered Turkish savory dishes.
Later on, at the hotel we had the chance to see on the internet the article that was written by Mr. Thodoris Nikolaou and published at the Greek newspaper “TA NEA” regarding our trip. We were really happy about it and of course we start teasing each other…!