Eceabat

Observations of ANZAC Day at Gallipoli

Now I am back in Dubai after sitting for hours on buses and spending a day touring Istanbul I thought ‘d write a post about general observations of Turkey, Gallipoli and ANZAC day.

It must have been difficult managing the transit of more than 20,000 people plus all the support crews to ensure people were safe and secure for the centenary. Of course there are issues, but moving that many people down a single road more than 400kms from Istanbul would be a nightmare.

Fortunately it as all handled really well, except for the timings which became frustrating. But we all got there, and all got back so it worked. Why things became frustrating was basically due to wrong or lack of proper information.

For example in all literature it states that travel to and from Istanbul is about 5 and half hours. This is so wrong it became a standing joke. It would be that time in a car with no traffic or security check points.

On the 24th we were picked up at 0600 from the hotel and delivered to Taksim Square to the big bus…we waited there 1 hour. The first of many waits. As we drove to the Blue Mosque we actually drove past our hotel again…so the 1 hour wait was unnecessary and also the early rise.

At the Blue Mosque there were over 300 coaches and we waited there for two hours before moving off. So far we had spent more time waiting than driving. Everything was starting to have a classic army “hurry up and wait” look and feel.

We proceeded out of Istanbul and down the freeways on the peninsula, by this time the bus was rambunctious…with Kiwis and Aussie liberally sledging each other ?with light hearted banter. We had a good bunch of people on our bus apart from one bag…but you always have one in every group.

The five and half hours was long since past. ?? Read more »