Earth : Europe : Turkey : Eastern Anatolia : Dogubeyazit
When going towards east to Iran, this is the last Turkish town you'll come across.
As of Nov 2010, electricity supply is operating normally, but there were reports that it was intermittent in the past, which may or may not be the case in the future.
From Kars, there is no direct bus. First you have to take a minibus to Iğdır (6 TL) and transfer there to another minibus (15 TL) (from the same place you have been dropped). Road between Igdir and Dogubeyazit passes by Mt. Ararat, offering fine views.
From Van there are several minibusses.
You can walk to most places in this fairly small city.
- Ishak Pasa Sarayi is a palace 5 km outside the city (entrace fee: 3 TL). This ancient fortress/castle/mosque is stunningly beautiful, and is a must see when in Dougbeyazit. Try to go on a dry, sunny day. The old town is nearby. Trek a little bit further up, and you can visit the tomb of Ahmedi Xani, the famous Kurdish poet and philosopher, and the ruins of the Urartian castle. The area is also famous for the rock formation assumed to be the remains of Noah's ark. You may also visit the meteor crater in the vicinity of the Iranian border.
- For a taxi from the town center, expect to pay approximately 10-15 TL one way. Worth considering asking the taxi driver to wait at the Palace.
- There is a dolmus service to the Palace; but hitch-hiking was quicker both going up and coming down so no idea about the price.
- Alternatively, it´s a very stiff walk all the way up (or down), in summer possibly dangerous even.
- Climb Mount Ararat (5,137 metres/16,854 ft), on the border of Turkey and Iran, supposedly where Noah's Ark landed. Guides and vehicles are available in Dogubeyazit. The climb is long, but there is a fairly easy route from the south in late summer for climbers who are familiar with the use of axe and crampons. Snow covers the last 400 m (¼ mile) year-round. There are two possible campsites on the mountain, and the glacier begins around 4,800 m (15,750 ft). International climbers need a climbing permit that can be obtained through the Turkish Embassies or, the easier option is to let your guide's company do it. Expect the authorities to process your permit application in two months. You also need a licensed guide to accompany you on the trek. People most often attempt to climb upp to the summit and return to Dogubayazit in 4 days. However, you may need more time to acclimatise, so it can be wise to add an extra day.
You may also want to climb other mountains in the region, such as Mt Suphan, as part of your acclimatisation.
Try to get a rare Abdigor Kofte. It is a fist size meatball on the pilaf but it difficult to find because not many people know how to cook it. This dish cannot be found anywhere else. It is a local delicacy that can be found only in Dogubayazit.
- Cafe shop on Kermelsi Rd. in the center of Dogubeyazit
- Pure fruit juice shop, makes nice pure juice! Istanplak Avenue in eastern Dogubeyazit
Hotels are numerous. Not all places provide air conditioning.
- Hotel Erzurum, İ. Beşikçi Caddesi. This hotel has clean rooms with shared bathrooms.
- Hotel Grand Derya, Abdullah Baydar Caddesi 203, ☎ +90 472 312-75-31 (fax: +90 472 312-78-33). This three star hotel is run down, but has air-conditionıng.
- Hotel Isfahan, Isagecit Caddesi 26, ☎ +90 472 312-43-63 ([email protected], fax: +90 472 312-40-81), . This hotel has spacious rooms and a somewhat worn lobby area.
- Hotel Nuh, ☎ +90 472 312-72-32. It has an impressive lobby area but shabby rooms. The rooftop restaurant has views of Ararat.
- Hotel Ortadoğu, Ağrı Caddesi 105, ☎ +90 472 312-42-25 ([email protected]), . Carpet floor rooms with en-suite bathrooms, TV. Next door to convenience store, very close to bus stops. Staff were helpful, spoke some English. From 30TL/night.
- Hotel Tahran, Büyük Ağrı Caddesi 124, ☎ +90 472 312-01-95 ([email protected]), . Hotel Tahran is inexpensive with surprisingly clean but small bathrooms. They also provide depository service for unnecessary stuff when doing a trip across the border to Iran or up to Ararat.
- Hotel Urartu, Abdullah Baydar Caddesi (across the street from post office), ☎ +90 472 312-72-95. Urartu is reasonable with friendly staff.
Note that it can be difficult to leave after about 14:00 as most buses depart in the morning. There are two bus stops at opposite ends of town: one otogar for distant destinations and one for dolmuses to Van.
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