I always feel reluctant about joining a pre-arranged tour, anywhere. However, the tour we booked with Hassle Free was not only very good, but also very affordable. For a two day trip, including excursions with a knowing guide to Gallipoli and Troy, transportation, one lunch and one nights accommodation, we paid $59. A quick calculation learns that arranging it on your own might be a tad cheaper, but leaves with the difficulty of arranging local transport and with no guide.
In Gallipoli, we were toured around by a local historian, retired submarine captain Ali, from whom we even received some shells founds on the peninsula. In Troy, we were guided by another local historian. Both tours were done very well.
Ã‡anakkale isn’t an interesting town in itself, although its location, on the Asian side of the Dardanelles is impressive. The locals have a much more Mediterranean look to them and the girls are much more beautiful than in Istanbul. Of course what helped was that most were dressed as the girls in Greece, with no shawl around their head and with tight sitting pants and shirt.
Driving back from Canakkale, I realized one thing I didn’t like about Turkey: its style of city planning. It seems someone has been playing SimCity a little bit too often. Groups of identical buildings seem to be huddled together everywhere. In the cities, in the countryside. Between the groups, the buildings are always different, but within a group, they are identical.