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Between airports, airplanes and transit lounges

Turkey: Antalya – the city with many faces

Antalya the city has many faces. Its warm in the Sun and cooler in the shade.

The first face that we saw was suburban Antalya, outside the humdrum of the old city, the markets, the grand bazar. Set besides Duden park it was a modern retirement home for the Turkish expat community with a small town on the Mideterranean look and feel. It was where we witnessed loving Turkish hopitality that reminded us of weddings in Bombay at Nana’s (Grand Father) home when four families could live in a two bed room apartments and still have space for more.

The second face of Antalya is around the old harbor where it feels as if you have buzzed back into time in a dimension where the entire neighbourhood is one big Bohri (Grand) Bazar (market). Small lanes, smaller shops, cobbeled pavements, tramlines and lots of tourists. Relics of an old fort’s wall remind you of the age of the city. A gate that opened up to visitors and invaders alike.

It’s a great walk down to the old harbor cutting through lanes of covered shops. For the walk up, I recommend the other side right next to the café, the residences and the hotels where you can feel the breeze and steal breath taking views of the Mideterranean Sea. But at the same time don’t let the romance in the air get you to pay 20 liras for a single donner kebab and a drink. That fare is available for a lot cheaper if you are willing to look around especially before you eat.

The third is the modern market place. For us that represented a smaller mall in central Antalya called the SheMall where our primary attraction was the food court followed by the toy store given that there were six kids in our party of five.

The last and final is the nature oriented face of Antalya represented by the waterfalls, the long drives to the hills, the moonlit dinners and the sea. Irrespective of the face you pick, it is a great place to chill and spend a few days with your Turkish family, guzzling home cooked Turkish food, living of the sunlight and catching up on the no-work-at-home recharge.