Kapıkırı Village Waiting For Visitors in All Seasons PDF Yazdır E-posta

‘Before you reach Kapıkırı village you can see a gate of what was once an entrance to Heraclea. Thousands of people used to enter the old town via this gate. Now the remaining entrances to Heraclea wait for a handful of tourists’
The Lake Bafa is seen behind Wilco Van Herpen. ‘Driving past the lake you see a couple of islands, one with the remainder of something that resembles a monastery,’ he says. Photo by Wilco Van Herpen.

The Lake Bafa is seen behind Wilco Van Herpen. ‘Driving past the lake you see a couple of islands, one with the remainder of something that resembles a monastery,’ he says. Photo by Wilco Van Herpen.

Sometimes when we go for a holiday we make stupid mistakes. We are blinded by our destination and forget about the beauty on the way to, let’s say, Bodrum. We have no time for a break because we are on a holiday. The hotel room we booked is waiting for us. Sun, sea and no stress… How many times I made this mistake I actually can’t remember. But finally I was there, the place I always passed in a hurry: Lake Bafa. Every time on my way to Bodrum I looked at this impressive lake, and every time I promised myself to go there on my next excursion. But I never did until I had to go to Lake Bafa for my TV program “Wilco’nun Karavanı.” What a mistake I had made over and over again by not visiting Kapıkırı village.

After Söke, on the way to Milas, you will pass Lake Bafa. This part of journeying used to be a source of frustration for a lot of drivers since it used to be a two-lane road. Because it was difficult to pass slow driving trucks or campers like mine, people were obliged to follow slow traffic for kilometers. All those drivers saw was the car or truck in front of them. But now there is good news for them: The road has changed into a four-lane road so you all can press the gas pedal and fly to your destination. Driving past the lake you see a couple of islands, one with the remainder of something that resembles a monastery. Shortly after you have seen this little island there is an exit to the left. A narrow, twisting road leads to the lake. After passing Gölyaka it is as if you enter a different time zone.

To your left and right you see the ruins of a city once called Heraclea. Before you reach Kapıkırı village you can see a gate of what was once an entrance to Heraclea. Thousands of people used to enter the old town via this gate. Now the remaining entrances to Heraclea wait for a handful of tourists who are visiting this long-forgotten but fascinating place.

Homemade souvenirs on sale

At the entrance of Kapıkırı a group of women sit at the side of the road. They are selling their own homemade souvenirs, so I park my camper and look around. The handmade embroideries are beautiful. I want to buy some and ask a woman how much they cost. Suddenly I find myself surrounded by women.

All of them show their own goods. I can’t see any difference between one another but they assure me that this one is better than that one. It feels like a village war is starting. One woman claims that she saw me first and another one says that I first went to her. I do not know what to do, so I quickly choose a couple of the embroidered goods and get into my camper. When I drive away I look in my mirror and see that all of them went back to the place where they sat before, chatting with each other as if nothing happened.

Eating smoked eel

By the time I arrive at Agora Pension Hotel it is almost evening. Orhan, the owner of the hotel, is waiting for me. “I know Dutch people like smoked eel and today I was lucky, I caught some nice eel for you,” he said.

After a welcome drink he slowly starts with the dinner preparations. When I arrived I saw a couple of drums on top of each other, but I did not place any importance on them: All I saw were a couple of oil drums. But now it all changes. He had made his own smoking oven from scratch. The two oil drums: They were the smoke pot. Some gorgeous, big, fat eels are waiting on a tray. Orhan puts some firewood in the bottom part of the oil drums and sets it on fire. Soon the oven was the right temperature for the eel to be smoked.

That evening Orhan spoke with a local fisherman who agreed to take my crew and me on a boat trip the next day.

Tomorrow I would visit the islands of Lake Bafa. Before I touched the bed I was already asleep, and that night I dreamed about the goddess Selene who fell in love with her beautiful but poor shepherd Endymion. But in my dream Zeus did not keep Endymion in perpetual sleep; oh no, in my dream Selene and the young, beautiful shepherd had a nice life on the banks of Lake Bafa.

Wilco Van Herpen

KAPKIRI - Hürriyet Daily News
www.hurriyetdailynews.com
Tuesday, October 18, 2011

 

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