Troy and Pergamon and a lot of road

After two wonderful days on the Gallipoli Peninsula, with balmy spring weather, we learned about the other side of life with a thunderstorm overnight and a wet cold morning.

I couldn’t help but wonder how miserable those trenches would have been.

We crossed the Dardanelles and drove an hour to Troy. There is a wooden horse, not the real one according to our guide, but some elaborate playground equipment.

Troy has been occupied many times over the years and there are nine layers of civilisation there. Of course the time of Menelaus and Helen, Paris and Aphrodite is of most interest.

Also interesting is the way this site was dug up in the name of archaeology. Massive swathes were cut out of the hill not for history but for the treasures, most of which were moved to Berlin then to Russia.

So in fact there is not a great deal to see in Troy, just a fantasy tale of love and revenge.

It was another long drive through cloud covered mountains to Pergamon to see an amazing Roman city built high on the hill above what is now Bergama.

Here it was easy to imagine life on the streets and especially in the massive Roman Theatre that seats 6,000 people, set into the side of a very steep hill. I chickened out and didn’t climb the entire height of this theatre. I have held my breath, narrowed my vision and climbed up and down others that are not as big but certainly scarey. How did those Romans manage?

Every site has a lesson for you. Here it was understanding how Romans ported water from a spring on a nearby mountain, down a valley and up this hill – what great engineering.

And another long drive to Selçuk where Ephesus awaits us.