A Meze (sometimes spelled Mezze) Platter is a an assortment of small plates or appetizers, kind of on par with Spanish Tapas. It is served similarly to Ethiopian food, with flat bread (though Ethiopian Injera is more spongy and sour-dough-y in flavor, and the Turkish flatbread I had with meze is thinner and not sour) that you use to pick up the other food. Meze are served all throughout the middle east and the Mediterranean and varies from region to region.
Our trip reminds me of a Meze Platter: a little taste of a bunch of different parts of Turkey, not a full meal of any one thing. I was looking at it as an introduction to a country I know little about and was excited to get a taste of! Thankfully, the where to go and how to get there planning was left in A’s capable hands, with some help from her parents (who had been previously) and a couple of friends of ours including E, an American girl I know who went to Turkey for a short-term trip and wound up staying in Istanbul permanently.
Thanks to A’s research and planning, we came up with the following itinerary:
– 2 1/2 days in Istanbul
– 1 1/2 days in Ephesus
– 2 days in Cappadocia
(And, yes, loyal Chitalian readers, posts on all of those places will be forthcoming! I’ll update this post with links after they’re up!)
If you’re planning a similar trip to Turkey, I’d suggest the following:
1) don’t go to Ephesus in the heat of summer – the outdoor tours of the ruins was almost unbearable in the heat of summer, and if you’ve visited other Roman ruins (like Pompeii, for example, which I found very similar), you may not want to spend too much time here. While the ruins were really cool, and incredibly well-preserved and maintained (particularly when you consider how many tourists come through, especially since cruise ships dock nearby)
2) do not cheap out and skip the Balloon ride over Cappadocia just because it’s on the pricey side…. this was incredible, and not to be missed.
3) spend a little extra time in Cappadocia if you can…. I wish we had. I really liked that town and would have loved to have had a bit more time to spend there.
4) give yourself more than just a couple of days in Istanbul if you can. There is a lot to see, and a lot to experience. We only scratched the surface. I’d love to explore further.
5) buy lots of spices at the market! I wish I had bought more!!
More to come about this trip soon! In the meantime, start planning your own trip to Turkey!! Well worth the trip!!!