Good morning! At 8 I was awakened by the morning sun and I haven’t stopped staring outside the Dogu Express since. Incredible landscapes! ImageImageImageImage
UAE newspaper The National also wrote a nice article ahout my trip.…
This is the @_DiningCar of the Dogu Express. They serve snacks, Turkish bread, tea of course, coffee but no warm meals. ImageImage
Within a few hours the landscape completely changed to snow. It’s incredible. I took loads of photos which I’m going to share with you later but need to edit them and right now Im not going to waste even a second looking at my laptop screen. It’s just breathtaking looking outside
Still looking outside. Glued to my seat. Image
Snow, sometimes a tree, then only snow and clouds, a mountain appears, a few other trees pass. So simple but so stunning. ImageImageImage
Having a chia with Sami. Only person on the train I could find who speaks a little bit of English. Image
22.5 hours later I reached Erzurum. Seems fun here even though it’s -6.

I’m going to get a meal and after find a bus to Dogebayazit, the last town before Iran.
Proof that I’m in Erzurum Image
Found a bus to Doğubayazıt. Leaves at 21.00. 3 hours from now. Arrival 01.00. Some friends are waiting for me there so pity there is no earlier bus.
I’ve been to this part before when I was travelling to Australia by electric car. Image
Been spending a while now at this bus terminal. Always love it to be at strange and random places in the middle of nowhere. Image
Now boarding the bus to Doğubayazıt. 4 hour drive and will enter Kurdistan soon. Not always in the news for the right reasons but my experience is that Kurds are extremely friendly and hospitable. Image
Arrived at hotel in Dogubeyazit, 34km from the Iranian border. So far the whole trip went pretty smooth. Tomorrow could be a big twist. The Iran border is closed for 15 days since Dec 25. Today is day 15. So should reopen tomorrow but no news so far and might well be extended. Image

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More from @WiebeWkkr

9 Jan
Day 7. I’m wearing thermal underwear. Suat is bringing me from Dogubeyazit to the border. I’ve been in Dogu before, and had some problems here, on my way to Australia by EV. Suat already helped me back then. Let’s see if we can enter Iran today. It think my chance is 5%. Image
The sights are again spectaculair
Exited Turkey. Now in the always weird no man’s land. So far so good. Image
Read 16 tweets
7 Jan
Day 5. I’m in Ankara and just did a PCR test for Iran. It’s one of the challenges of travelling in these times.
Now I have some time to see the city. At 17.55 I’m taking the Dogu Express to Erzurum. I think this will be one of the highlights of the trip.
At Anıtkabir, Ataturk’s Mausoleum. Massive impressive complex. Image
I like it that most people on the streets in Turkey wear a mask. It’s not a rule here but people do it out of respect to others. Asian mentality, much more caring.
Unlike in Netherlands where the mentality is: not mandatory to wear a mask? Why do it?
Read 6 tweets
6 Jan
Good morning. It’s day 4 and I’m in Istanbul. Starting with a delicious Turkish breakfast. Cheese pide and menemeh
Just crossed the Bosphorus Bridge. I’m really in Asia now
At Sogutlucesme Railway Station now. Airport Security style check at the entrance.
Read 10 tweets
5 Jan
Günaydın Istanbul! Do I need to say more?
I reached the city around 6 this morning. Got me a chai and pide and rushed to the Bosphorus to see the sunset. Behind me is the bridge that connects to Asia. Quite unbelievable that within 48 hours I reached Asia from Amsterdam, by land
In my original plan I wanted to enter Iran on January 7 so should have continued today. As the border is closed until Jan 9 I now have 2 extra days in Turkey. So will spend 1 night here and tomorrow in Ankara for sightseeing.
So here is some news. The event I was supposed to speak at the Expo has been cancelled. Really a big let down, I have been preparing and looking forward to this for months and was well on the way.
I do still feel like continuing the trip and hopefully I’ll find another platform.
Read 7 tweets
4 Jan
Good morning from the Dacia Express. This is the day 2 thread!
Had a decent sleep although two times interrupted by police who came in to check passports and the train stopped a few times.
The best part was waking up: love to stare outside and see the cloudy landscape pass by.
I will be on this train until 4pm. Then I have 4 hours in Bucharest to get a proper meal and find the bus terminal. Keep following as I’m going to explore this train today.
Just went to the @_DiningCar. Looks pretty neat. Sadly they don’t take cards and didn’t have time to take out money so I’m surviving on some peanut bars my mom gave me. I thought they would come in handy.
Read 13 tweets
3 Jan
I'm gone! Amsterdam - Dubai by train, bus and ferry. In 10 days I'll try to cross 9 countries and the Persian Gulf to speak at @expo2020dubai.
Looking forward to my trip. Love slow travel, meeting new people and seeing the scenery gradually change.
This is the route that will take me to Dubai. It'll be an adventure for sure. Iran is closed right now and if it doesn't open on time I need to find another way.
Today's first task is to reach Vienna. Just one short stop in Frankfurt.
So far so good. Just crossed German border. Train is fully packed. Even people standing. Might be a lot people who are returning home from Christmas.
Read 17 tweets

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