Photo Club Trek to Iznik, Turkey (Day 1)

 Iznik, as it would look on a good day.

I've just spent a wonderful two days on a photo trek to Iznik. We had such fun exploring the town and the surrounding area, and came away with hundreds of images.

Present day Iznik was founded on the ancient city of Nicaea, mentioned in the bible, although archeological evidence shows that the area was first settled around 2500 BC. St Peter the Apostle introduced Christianity to Nicaea, and the 1st Ecumenical Council was held there, where the concept of the Holy Trinity was accepted, together with the formulation of the Nicene Creed.

We had lunch at Lezzet Lokantası

Built on the edge of the lake that bears its name, Iznik is a popular holiday destination. We were delighted to find that our hotel was right by the lake, although we did wish the weather had been better, it was rather overcast and gloomy. Undeterred by the weather, however, we quickly settled into our hotel and headed for the town's centre, where we had lunch at Lezzet Lokantası. The owner prides himself on using only the freshest ingredients for his dishes, and the food certainly was delicious.

We then walked through the weekly market to photograph the fruits and vegetables, and other goods for sale. One feature of the market I found fascinating was the groups of women obviously selling small quantities of their own produce, probably grown in the small villages surrounding Iznik.

There were also small chicks for sale

After the market, we headed for the hills to a village called Sansarak, perched on a rocky outcrop.

On the way, we saw this flock of goats

The goatherd was amused that we were taking pictures of his goats

The village houses were crammed together, with narrow roads between

This is an outdoor stove, ready to boil a kettle

Outdoor bread ovens, are also a feature of the village

Everywhere we went, we were followed by curious little boys

The people in the village were very friendly towards us, 
and didn't mind us photographing them

Most of the women were going about their daily chores...

...while others were doing crochet work for sale

We didn't see many of their menfolk, as they were busy in the fields

That evening, we sat by the lake and dined off the local fish. A perfect end to a perfect day.

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