Day 76 – 21st June 2014 leave 10am Miles rode 264 Erzurum – Van

It felt good to be back on the bike this morning, I had missed it and hadn’t realised how much. The ride today was good although it was very hot, not as hot as it will be in a few weeks I kept thinking.

Van feels like a vibrant city, more modern than Erzurum.

The photo above sums up many Turkish cities, on the left the modern coffee shop with 3 floors of designer fitted out interior where a coffee is over £2 and to the right in the undeveloped waste ground someone has set up a chai (tea) cafe with basic stools and low tables, the chai costs 28pence. The coffee shop attracts young men & women and the chai shops are 99% older men. The chai below is the same as is served everywhere in Turkey, the cappuccino I ordered came with the elaborate sugar design on top which may look creative but wasn’t required!

I like both cafés and have spent the vast majority of time in the traditional ones drinking chai and talking to the men.