Cycling is hard. No matter how strong you are and how good your bike is sooner or later your body will tell you, that it is time to rest. After over 3 weeks of pedalling we both felt, that it would be nice to just get lazy. Sleep long, find a washing machine, eat well and simply do nothing. When we have been pushing hard across the Turkish interior, we used to say to each other – just get to Samsun, then the rest will be easy. Samsun is a relatively big city on the coast of the Black Sea. We did not plan anything special, did not even know where we were going to sleep, and in the last minute we have decided to find a friendly person via Couch Surfing (a website for travellers and local hosts that are willing to spend time together). We were more than lucky to get the positive response from Yavuz – an amazingly friendly and open minded young doctor. From the first moment we knew that it is going to be a nice time!

On our way to the Black Sea we did not plan to see Amasya, but Yavuz was kind enough to give us a ride there. So after more than 3 weeks on the bicycle we were sitting in a car, going over seven times faster than our bikes. Part of the road we took was the same as we have cycled to Samsun, so we could sea our old spots where we used to have a snack or camp. Amasya turned out to be one of the best places we have seen in Turkey so far! Placed on the banks of a river, squeezed between rocky mountains, full of old buildings, monuments and narrow streets.

Back in Samsun we spent some time with Yavuz’s friends. We were introduced to Kemal, a painter in our age, who opened his atelier for us and showed us his recent paintings. It was a very refreshing experience, because both of us really love art, but due to the lack of time before the trip (preparation, preparation …) we did not see any good works for months. Kemal’s paintings were exactly what we needed to get back on the track!

We cooked a lot at Yavuz’s place, we managed to merge our vegetarian recipes with Turkish cuisine and it turned out delicious! Yavuz spoiled us with local sweets and the best ice cream we have ever tried!

After 3 nights in Samsun we felt rejuvenated enough to take the coastal road to Trabzon, but it was extremely hard to leave our host and the other good people we have met. But when you travel, you must leave some of this beautiful things behind to let others happen.