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Before getting started I just want to clarify that we are not drug users. We don’t condone using illegal drugs. And we are not telling you to go and smoke weed in Amsterdam. BUT, our goal of this travel blog is to help advise, educate and provide travel tips for ALL situations. So if you are headed to Amsterdam then we hope our guide to smoking weed in Amsterdam will help you out.

And check out this smoker friendly accommodation for your next trip.

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam Coffeeshop

When you tell people that you are visiting Amsterdam then they immediately think of one thing and one thing only. Weed. Dope. Herb. Buds. Spliff. Whacky Tobbacky. Pot. Marijuana. Cannabis. 

Call it what you will but just know that the biggest name for it is “ILLEGAL”.

Yes it is actually illegal to smoke weed in Amsterdam. But for now the Netherlands government do tolerate smoking in designated “coffeeshops”. This is slowly changing as the Government tries to moderate the tourism drug trade and in 2013 there will be new laws which we won’t go in to now as they are continuously changing.

In the meantime if you obey the rules, are not a moron and use our guide to smoking weed in Amsterdam then you are going to be fine.

Smoke weed in Amsterdam

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Don’t smoke weed in Amsterdam in public such as on the streets. There are over 300 designated coffee shops where you are tolerated to smoke weed. These places are regulated and everything is done in the open.

Don’t get confused and try to smoke in a koffiehuis (coffee house) which sells coffee and light meals or a café that is a casual restaurant and/or bar.

The coffeeshops are super easy to spot with marijuana leaves in the windows and Bob Marley paintings on the doors. Not to mention the smell wafting through the cold breeze. There will also be the usual tourists that have stupidly over-indulged and are glassy eyed.

We visited one of the five Bulldog coffeeshops when we were in Amsterdam and had no complaints. We even enjoyed a delicious hot chocolate while we were there!

Bulldog Coffeeshop in Amsterdam

Buying weed in Amsterdam

As long as you are over 18 then you will be allowed to buy up to 5 grams of weed in the regulated coffeeshops. Plus you have the added security knowing that your marijuana is not going to be laced with anything else if you are attempting to buy it off someone on the street. And who knows, they might be setting you up to get busted.

We were (and are) total amateurs and had no idea what to do once we actually stepped foot in the coffeeshop. But quickly sussed it out. There will generally be a “dealer bar” with full menu’s and everything for you to choose. So if you are an expert you will probably know what to order! Prices will of course vary by quantity (grams, bags, individual joints) and quality.

For a beginner ask lots of questions. Don’t be shy like we were. Ask the staff what they recommend and what effects each type has. They will know then that you are a newbie and will guide you. Just know that they are very accustomed to tourists who don’t know exactly how to go about the whole process.

What we found out is that it is actually perfectly fine for you to visit other coffeeshops and smoke weed that you have already purchased somewhere else. However, it is considered rude not to at least buy a hot chocolate or coffee if you do this. Coffeeshops do also have some of the best coffee in Amsterdam.

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Don’t be an idiot

Number 1 rule: Don’t smoke too much weed in Amsterdam! Even if you are a pot loving hippie from a commune you are probably going to find the marijuana really strong in Amsterdam. Just take it slow.

If you are enjoying a drink as well then again take it easy with the booze. All the coffeshops won’t sell you beer as well as cannabis.

EAT! Don’t go drinking and smoking on an empty stomach as cannabis lowers your blood sugar level and this can turn a fun day into a disaster if you haven’t eaten recently. Check out our Amsterdam Food Guide for some quick eating tips here.

A final word of warning, please watch out for the spacecake! Eating cannabis will knock you on your ass and is much stronger than when smoked.

Finally, enjoy yourselves and for goodness sake obey the rules, laws and customs while you are smoking weed in Amsterdam.

If you have an addiction to drugs then reach out and seek some help.

Check out these Weed Products for your next travel adventure.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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70 Comments

70 Comments

  1. D.J. - The World of Deej

    April 1, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Great post…brought back some fun memories. Well, they are fuzzy, but still fun:)

    I agree with the spacecakes. I had a long debate with my friend about the viscous they produce. You eat one, you get hungry, you eat another, you get more hungry, and on and on:)

    • Cole

      April 1, 2012 at 8:46 PM

      Thanks D.J! We have debated about whether or not to post this or not but decided it would be better to educate some people as most are going to try it anyway! We never tried spacecakes but I was tempted.

      • Wyn Williams

        January 5, 2013 at 7:26 PM

        Nice article, I go to the Dam a lot and your pretty spot on, defintly people new to AMsterdam should ask questions and guidance, that what the staff are there for 🙂 also try a few shops and if it is your first time do not go near space cakes

        Oh and yeah, smoking is back on with out any problems in Amsterdam !

        • Cole Burmester

          January 16, 2013 at 11:15 AM

          Thanks Wyn for the update! Adela recently returned on a girls weekend too and confirmed you can smoke in Amsterdam 😉

  2. Bret@ Green Global Travel

    April 2, 2012 at 1:00 AM

    I was a big “head” in my early 20s. The fact that cannabis is illegal is ridiculous–- the result of decades of intense lobbying by the tobacco and alcohol industries, who stand to lose a fortune if weed was legalized. The truth is, weed is far less addictive or damaging to our bodies than cigarettes or alcohol. Thankfully, the Obama Administration had gradually slowed down “the war on drugs” here in the U.S. If you’re ever curious about the history of marijuana laws, I highly recommend a book called “The Emperor Wears No Clothes.” It’s eye-opening, to say the least!

    • Cole

      April 2, 2012 at 9:53 AM

      Haven’t read the book but will look in to it. Thanks Bret.

  3. Natalie

    April 2, 2012 at 6:50 AM

    I can understand you debating whether to post it or not but at the end of the day, most people associate Amsterdam with this establishments anyway. Better to educate because like you say, if they are searching on google for info then they are going to try it anyway. Like that you put the warnings at the end and beginning. I think that adds a lot to the post

    • Cole

      April 2, 2012 at 9:54 AM

      That was our reasoning behind it as well Natalie. Hopefully our Mums won’t mind too much 🙂 We really wanted it to be educational rather than “go to Amsterdam and get high!”

  4. Abhishek Behl (Wild Navigator)

    April 2, 2012 at 8:53 AM

    Good post Cole – Yes, i would agree that drinking and smoking weed on an empty stomach never goes well. I like the reality on your post and the way you educate vistors visiting Amsterdam. My wife and I did go to Amsterdam and as we both are non smokers did not venture into these coffeeshops. Will certainly guide people to your post who do visit a coffeeshop for the first time in Amsterdam. Thanks for posting it – Cheers

    • Cole

      April 2, 2012 at 10:04 AM

      Thanks Abishek for sharing it! Always appreciated. We were really worried about posting this as we didn’t want to come across as promoting drugs in anyway. We don’t smoke or anything ourselves but did try it in Amsterdam so thought it would be better to educate. Hopefully everyone sees it that way!

  5. Kieu ~ GQ trippin

    April 2, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    O this reminds me of the time we had space cakes in Amsterdam. LOL. Good thing we only had one. I think it’s a great post to share. We wrote a similar one when we went in 2006. I don’t think you’ve promoted drugs in any way. Love that you included the warnings and how-tos for those looking for a safe way to experiment in Amsterdam. 🙂

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 9:17 AM

      Thanks Kieu! We were really hesitant about sharing it (and not sure what Mum and Dad will say haha) but feel glad that we wrote it now 🙂

  6. Laurence

    April 2, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    Those hot chocolates look amazing! Just the sort of thing you would want after a bit of a smoke. This is a very informative post. I’m with Bret on this one. Cannabis is one of those things that really shouldn’t be illegal, particularly as tobacco and alcohol are just as bad if not worse. The other downside of the war on drugs is the negative light that other members of the cannabis tree get painted in. Hemp for example is an incredible natural resource that is seriously underused in our world, because of it’s associations with weed. It’s a messed up world!

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 9:16 AM

      Haha just like my reply to Bret, I am not going to get in to the whole argument about whether it should be legalized or not 🙂 But yup the hot chocolates were delicious 🙂

  7. dtravelsround

    April 2, 2012 at 9:13 PM

    These are great tips! I have been there twice, visited Bulldog twice. The thing to remember is not to go crazy with the smoking!

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 9:14 AM

      Totally D! We are not experts so made sure not to over-indulge.

  8. The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen)

    April 3, 2012 at 1:54 AM

    Haha, fun post, guys! We don’t smoke — but good to know!

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 9:14 AM

      We don’t either but felt that we had to try it since we were there. Made a good post in the end 🙂

  9. Kurt

    April 3, 2012 at 2:48 AM

    Ha I so miss Amsterdam. For many reasons besides the bud, hash and canals.

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 9:13 AM

      Amsterdam is actually a great city and it is kind of a shame it is only really known for smoking and sex!

  10. Christy @ Technosyncratic

    April 3, 2012 at 8:21 PM

    Kali and I are heading to Amsterdam at the end of this month, and one of the things we’d like to try are the coffeeshops. We’re total noobs as well when it comes to weed, though, so I’m glad I came across this!

    • Cole

      April 3, 2012 at 8:37 PM

      Glad we could help Christy! We had no idea what to do either! We have heard that there are better places than Bulldog Cafe but for a start I am sure you will enjoy it! Enjoy the peep show too haha.

  11. Sophie HeadingThere

    April 4, 2012 at 5:03 PM

    Ha, brilliant! I remember going to a cafe where the walls and tables were covered in graffiti. What was it called? Blue…something? I guess my head was a little fuzzy!

    • Cole

      April 5, 2012 at 9:07 AM

      Can’t help you there Sophie sorry! Glad you enjoyed the post though. We were really worried about posting it and wondering what sort of reaction it would get.

    • Jonnhy

      December 16, 2012 at 9:58 PM

      Hill Street Blues Coffe shop

  12. Laura

    April 5, 2012 at 10:54 PM

    A friend of mine returned from Amsterdam and confessed to me that half of the money he had spent on that trip had been on weed. The funny thing is that at home he never touches the stuff. 🙂

    • Cole

      April 6, 2012 at 8:28 AM

      Hahaha your friend sounds like the typical Amsterdam tourist! We never smoke at home either so it was a bit bizarre but the experience was still awesome.

  13. Bud Tender

    April 6, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    Here are a bunch of actual coffeeshop menus, just for background information.

    http://www.coffeeshopmenus.org/CoffeeshopMenus.htm

    Enjoy
    Bud Tender

    • Cole

      April 8, 2012 at 5:46 PM

      Thanks Bud Tender! Great list for our readers.

  14. Jarmo @ Arctic Nomad

    April 8, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    Brilliant! I do like the photos with the coffees and the hot chocolates… 😉 But I love Amsterdam, such a pretty little city with all the small cafés by the canals, heading there again next weekend

    • Cole

      April 8, 2012 at 5:53 PM

      Yea it doesn’t all have to be about the weed. Hopefully we will return again sometime but so many other European cities to visit!

  15. Erik

    April 9, 2012 at 12:31 AM

    Good, helpful information! People are going to try it, it’s best they know what they are in for.

    I have been to Amsterdam quite a few times, and wether smoking in the coffeeshops is your main goal or not, it is important to make sure you see the city. I met way too many stoners who only went for the pot. I have no problem with that, but too many hadn’t seen any of the city. It seems to me that missing such a great city to sit around stoned all day is unfortunate. I always tried to tell them, don’t get so fried that you can’t at least enjoy strolling the beautiful canals.

    Agreed on the space cakes- I’ve seen way too many people freak out or just being way too uncomfortable after eating those- an experiment I’m glad I never tried!

    • Cole

      April 9, 2012 at 9:17 PM

      Cheers Erik. We were really worried about posting this but have had a good response so really glad we did in the end. Totally understand what you mean about visiting the actual city. So many tourists seem to stumble in and out of coffeeshops all day and miss out on some amazing sights such as Anne Frank’s house! We were warned about the space cakes as well so really glad we didn’t try them!

  16. cheryl

    May 12, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    I love you guys for posting this! 🙂

    I don’t get why people think that having some weed at a coffee in the ‘Dam is such a bad thing. Do it, have fun. Why not?

    I may or may not have visited a coffee shop during my visit to Amsterdam.

    • Cole Burmester

      May 13, 2012 at 12:06 PM

      Thanks Cheryl! We were really worried about posting this. Glad we did it though as the majority of people have congratulated us while others have asked why did we post it if we are not experts! And we are definitely not experts but like most people we like to experience different things so tried our best to write a beginners guide for it 🙂

  17. Steven

    June 11, 2012 at 5:39 PM

    Thank you so much for the information. Do most coffeeshops speak English?

    • Cole Burmester

      June 12, 2012 at 3:29 PM

      No worries Steven. And yup pretty much everyone we met in Amsterdam spoke fluent English so you will be fine! Have fun 🙂

  18. Brenda Scott

    July 31, 2012 at 4:38 AM

    great places to enjoy weeds in moderation…hope every place or countries will allow that kind of venues for marijuana users…”legally”

  19. Colin

    September 24, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    The notion that foreigners cannot purchase weed in AMSTERDAM is utterly false until 2013 and the law may not even go into full effect thanks to loss of enthusiasm from the bill’s original proponents Onno Hoes (Mayor of Maastricht). The wietpass law has taken effect in southern Netherlands and cities like Maastricht but NOT Amsterdam yet. I’m not exactly sure where you heard that but verify stuff before you post it bro. Refer to the Bulldog’s website lol http://www.thebulldog.com/node/85.

    • Cole Burmester

      September 30, 2012 at 5:51 PM

      Thanks Colin for bringing that to our attention. We have amended our post and hopefully will hear from someone else that has visited soon to confirm whether they can smoke there or not.

  20. Felipe Cassity

    September 28, 2012 at 4:42 PM

    Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic post.Really thank you! Fantastic.

  21. Eli

    October 19, 2012 at 12:17 PM

    Thank you very much Cole for the interesting and informative read!! I am planning on going to Amsterdam in a few weeks and very excited to try this “strong” grass there 🙂 I also appreciate the fact that you stress to be responsible and not stupid and of course don’t fuck with the law haha

    Thanks again and stay high my friends,
    Eli

    • Cole Burmester

      October 19, 2012 at 3:33 PM

      Hahaha thanks Eli for dropping by! Let us know if you have any problems getting in “strong” grass while you are there. We are not quite sure of the laws at the moment, so any information would be great after your visit. If you remember it… haha 😉

  22. kbeth

    November 3, 2012 at 7:21 PM

    Leaving in two weeks for Amserdam. I know the Cannibus Cup is going on. Will the coffeeshops be crowded because this event? Hope not to have problems. This is my 3rd time..but many years ago…So hoping all is cool..

    • Cole Burmester

      November 3, 2012 at 7:34 PM

      Actually have never heard of the cannibis cup. You will have to tell us how it goes!

  23. kbeth

    November 4, 2012 at 5:14 AM

    http://www.cannabiscup.com/

    Here is the site. It is the High Times Magazines Annual Cannibus Cup.

  24. Kim Wild

    November 28, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    Hi,

    I thought I’d clear a few things up on here and other silly rumours on the internet.
    After some investigating a couple of months ago, I made a point of speaking to every coffee shop owner/employee on my visit – I went to 9.
    It’s fine to smoke weed in DESIGNATED smoking areas outside (these are clearly marked), you can still smoke tobacco in the coffee shops (I actually went to buy some herbal tobacco and they said it was fine to smoke my Golden V) and as for the crazy rumours and ‘reports’ about changing the law – every single coffee shop dismissed the idea. It would destroy their economy and tourist base. I honestly think its our governments trying to crack the control whip again.
    Also you may say you don’t condone drugs, but passive smoking will still get you high.

    Peace, one love – I’m going back to my commune… Sorry full time job 😀

  25. Patricia

    December 20, 2012 at 8:02 PM

    Going on a transatlantic cruise in May, 2013, will visit Amsterdam for 2 days, any further details about the coffee shop ban for foreigners?

    • Cole Burmester

      December 21, 2012 at 6:39 PM

      Hi Patricia,
      On Adela’s last visit in November they were allowed to buy weed fine. Not sure what will be happening in May though sorry. We are not aware of any rule changes at this time.

    • Toby

      April 21, 2013 at 1:14 AM

      Hi Patricia,

      I’m a local and can tell you that smoking weed in Amsterdam is still allowed, also for tourists. I doubt that it will change in the near future, if ever! Furthermore you are actually also allowed to smoke in public. Although it is very uncommon, the owner of a pub, bar or café may permit the use of cannabis in their establishment. However buying it is only permitted at locations with a so called declaration of tolerance (coffeeshops).

      I hope that the weather in May will be sunny. If so, buy some weed at a coffeeshop, go outside and sit on the edge of a Gracht (canal) or go chill at Vondelpark and enjoy the Amsterdam lifestyle.

      For more information check the official City of Amsterdam homepage: http://www.iamsterdam.com/en-GB/press-room/city-of-amsterdam-press-room/dossier-coffeeshops/faq

      Enjoy your stay!

      • Cole Burmester

        April 21, 2013 at 10:46 AM

        Thanks Tony for your extra information 🙂 Always great to have more insider tips!

        • Toby

          April 21, 2013 at 10:56 PM

          Toby. 🙂

  26. Vincenzo Giuliano

    December 22, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    Buying weed is still allowed, went to a coffeeshop last week and had mo trouble whatsoever.

  27. pat

    January 11, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    hi there,
    im going to holland soon
    i would like to know a place to go. a town.
    i will be there one day.
    i would like to smoke diferent kind of weed and try some mushrooms 🙂

    thanks for the infoooooo

    arg

    • Cole Burmester

      January 16, 2013 at 11:51 AM

      Hey Pat,
      Best advice is to find a good centrally located hostel in town and then ask them to show you around! They always have the best advice 🙂
      Enjoy!

  28. Sean M

    February 8, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    I guess I will just have to travel to Europe now! Thanks for the tips!

  29. Marie

    July 26, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    can we consume cannabis when we ARE 18 since you said OVER 18 ?

    • Cole Burmester

      July 27, 2013 at 8:32 AM

      Yes you can smoke weed in Amsterdam when you are 18 Marie.

  30. Lotte

    September 12, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    Actually, it’s not illegal to smoke weed in Amsterdam. I live there and its totally fine to smoke.

  31. Alejandra

    October 16, 2013 at 3:25 PM

    Hallo
    I have a question, Is there some park or place different to Caffe or Bar for smoke weed without problems?
    Thanks

  32. angelica

    April 7, 2014 at 4:15 PM

    I wish I had read this before going to Amsterdam. For those who don’t do drugs please don’t mix mushrooms and weed together. I did that big mistake and Omg had the worst experience of my life. I totally blacked out. I took 4 puffs and looked at my husband who wasn’t smoking thank God and told him I’m done. So he comes to me to comfort me, I looked at him and I told him I’m dizzy, once he put his arm around me I was DONE! he told me I closed my eyes and started shaking then fell on the floor. When I finally could respond I was sweating like crazy, I couldn’t see, but I could hear everyone calling my name and blowing on my face. I couldn’t feel my body at all. They took me outside to get some fresh air. I blacked out again a medic was helping me they we’re giving me water with sugar which I vomit 3 times, they were forcing me to eat a chocolate candy but my mouth was so dry I couldn’t swallow. They put some ice on my head multiple times because it was melting very fast. My heart beat was sooooo fast and then extremely slow. The medic was scared cause he lost a guy (died) doing weed and mushrooms . I could hear everyone talking and worried. I remember everything after waking up. All I could think about was “OMG I must look like shit” “My hair” I could tell you more of what happened but I was like that for almost 3 hrs. Anyways Amsterdam is a beautiful place. Don’t just go there for the weed. Please people who haven’t smoked before I strongly recommend you not to do it. If you don’t need it know you won’t need it later.

  33. Zeke

    May 13, 2014 at 3:16 AM

    Hey, great post guys, just wondering if you are still allowed to smoke marijuana in Amsterdam as a foreigner in 2014? Any ideas?

  34. Richard

    August 28, 2014 at 9:53 PM

    I know many people who have never been drug users. But it is literally impossible to visit Amsterdam and not to smoke some weed or eat a brownie. Anyway, thanks for an awesome guide!

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Europe

Let’s Do A Road Trip In Europe Fin

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Its that time of year again. It is the holidays and vacation, mirth and much merriment is upon us. Those of us who are lucky are able to take a few days to a few weeks off for vacation and can enjoy it abroad or do a staycation. A trip abroad is probably preferred, there’s so much to see and do, it would a pity to while the days away in your own hometown.

Get a move on, grab your bags, get a ticket and jump on a plane to Europe. When you get there, rest for a bit and begin your road trip. Nothing beats traveling on the road and taking all the sights that nature has to offer while stopping by at different locations.

Remember, a road trip can be very feasible and pleasant if it is done right. Make sure to have your car inspected, checked and ready to go for a long distance road trip.

You’ll want to make sure that you have your oil checked and your tires as well. Proper tires from suppliers such as Kwik Fit will get you squared away and ready to hit the road.

Oh, The Places You’ll Go

Grossglockner

One of the top places that you’ll want to go is in Austria. There’s this little spot called Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse, this spot is one that is talked about by road trip aficionados of all kinds.

The Grossglockner is the opposite of what it sounds like, it’s not gross at all, it’s quite pleasant actually.  The path will take you through different sights ranging from mountain tops to rivers, to rock formations and more. What’s fun about this place is that you will also be able to have different changes in the road itself, it is not just one straight path but one that is filled with turns and changes to keep you from getting bored.

Italy and the Amalfi Coast

Italy is a place that won’t disappoint, it has food, culture, and history to keep you company. Italy also has beautiful sights all over too. One of the best places to drive through would be the Amalfi Coast.

The Amalfi Coast has everything you could possibly want, beaches, cliffs, and beautiful fishing villages. The place is not only beautiful in nature but in culture as well. One can check out the Cathedrals, Villa Rufolo, engage in some boat tours for a quick respite from their road trip and also view the Sirenuse from afar.

Portugal – The Estoril Coast

Drive from Italy, pass by countries such as France, Spain and reach the destination of Portugal. You will find the climate and the overall setting over here to be appealing.  On your way to this beautiful place, make sure to check out popular spots such as Lisbon and other prominent locations such as Sintra. The Estoril Coast was home to the nobility of ages past and even to those that we see as nobility today, celebrities, wealthy people and tourists with a couple of euros or dollars to their name stop by this place and immerse themselves in the manmade and natural attractions that this place has to offer.

Don’t Hesitate, Time Stands Still For No One

Time is slipping, check out budget and look into which part of Europe you want to stick to. Make the decision and take the trip, it will be a great refreshment and you will be glad you were able to have the experience. Take a few snapshots and indulge in the experience of #RoadtripsofEurope

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Adventure Travel

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel

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Trekking through the valleys of Cappadocia’s fairy chimneys with Middle Earth Travel feels more like the set of a Star Wars movie than a historical region once carved out and lived in by humans. Churches, homes and pigeon houses are scattered throughout the valleys, all waiting to be explored. The best part is, Middle Earth Travel know all the hidden secrets.

Standing at the top of Cappadocia

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel

On the 26th of July (which just so happens to be my birthday!) Middle Earth Travel took us on their private and guided Top of Cappadocia day trek. From Pasabag, along the top of Cappadocia and down through the Gulludere Rose Valley to Goreme, we trekked 15kms in one day! (We recommend getting your bearings with this map)

Upon arrival to the Middle Earth Offices, we were warmly greeted by our new friend Atil whom we had met a few days earlier while mountain biking through the Kizilcukur Red Valley. We were then introduced to our guide and given a briefing regarding the day. Normally, the Top of Cappadocia tour would start from Çavuşin, however, since we had already explored Çavuşin Castle, they adapted our tour to compensate ensuring we would explore new terrain!

With charged cameras, plenty of water and our running shoes on, we were driven to our starting point of Pasabag. We wandered through the fairy chimneys, coming across camels and markets – then the true hike began.

Pasabag in Cappadocia

The police station in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

It was a slow and gentle incline. With no trees to provide shade, I quickly realised why our tour guide had chosen to wear fully covered clothing! As the sweat quickly set in (a waterfall in Moss’s case) we snapped away with our cameras and enjoyed the entertaining shapes of Imagine Valley and the amazing view. We also passed a lot of rock piles, which according to our guide mean ‘father’ and are built to help lead the way.

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Middle Earth Travel, Cappadocia

Making our way to the top of Cappadocia

Father leading the way (rock pile)

Father leading the way (rock pile)

The higher we trekked, the more breath taking the views became! As we walked along the summit of Bozdag mountain (the Top of Cappadocia) we could see EVERTHING – Pasabag, Çavuşin Castle, Kizilcukur Red Valley, Gulludere Rose Valley and Goreme. We were on the Father of Valleys! After a quick nod of agreement to the guide, we pushed ourselves the extra distance and made our way to the flag, as this HAD to be the highest point and was definitely worth a photo and a selfie or two!

View from the top of Cappadocia

View from the top of Cappadocia

Flag at top of Cappadocia

From the flag we looked down upon Aktepe Hill which is known as a popular destination for watching the sun set and could spot Kizilvadi Restaurant, our destination for lunch! Kizilvadi Restaurant is an attraction of its own. With its own historic winery and Grape church, plus some Middle Earth Travel treks even stay there for the night! After having a massive feed of soup, salad and pasta plus a surprise birthday cake, we made our way down into Gulludere Rose Valley.

Kizilvadi Restaurant

Kizilvadi Restaurant

The scenery is amazing, with strong colours visible in perfect layers on the chimneys, you would wonder what an artist was thinking, had it been a painting. Also, hidden to the side of the track we walked across a little bridge and not expecting anything to be there we were wowed by the massive church carved. It was absolutely huge and hard to believe that its most recent use has been as a pigeon house!

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Church in Gulludere Rose Valley

Hard to believe this Church is carved inside a fairy chimney!

Middle Earth Travel Review

  • The team at Middle Earth Travel were extremely knowledgeable and certainly know Cappadocia’s hidden secrets. They have friendships with local tea garden owners which is also of benefit as it gained us entry to locked churches and hidden rooms that we would not have otherwise seen.
  • We covered a lot of ground, however we did not feel rushed. The whole day focused on showing us the region, therefore we had as much time as we needed to explore each church and to take ‘just one more photo’.
  • It wasn’t all about trekking. With a whole day and 15kms to cover, there were a few silly poses (especially in Imagine Valley), and we learnt a lot about the myths, legends and way of life in Cappadocia.
  • In conclusion I highly recommend Middle Earth Travel if you wish to go trekking or mountain biking in Cappadocia.
  • Cost: Day treks with Middle Earth Travel range from 50-90 euro, depending on the number of people taking part. This includes lunch, guide, vehicle transfers and entrance fees to historical sites, but excludes alcoholic and soft drinks.
  • Middle Earth Travel are outdoor enthusiasts and offer multi-day over night treks, mountain biking, abseiling, or custom made itineraries, in multiple regions throughout Turkey.
  • www.middleearthtravel.com

Disclaimer: We were provided with a discount for the trek with Middle Earth Travel, however, as always our thoughts on our adventure travel blog our own.

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Adventure Travel

Walking the Camino de Santiago Photos

These are my favourite Camino de Santiago Photos from my pilgrimage along the French Way in March. A truly beautiful way to spend a few weeks.

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Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

El Camino de Santiago kicked my ass. Well technically it kicked my feet. Turns out my minimal preparation for the Camino de Santiago was terrible. After a miserable effort of only 4 days, the doctor in Legrono told me that I wasn’t allowed to go on until me feet healed. I had walked just over 100 km’s and my feet were bloodied and blistered.

To be honest, I was relieved.

The thought of putting back on my shoes made my shudder. For the last 9 km’s I had stumbled along in jandals and socks. One of the travelling fashion sins I vowed I would never break.

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

So while I have unfinished business with the Way of St James (an upcoming post), I did want to share with you some of my favourite photos from the Camino de Santiago. Because I had yet to reach some of the more “unsavoury” parts of the Camino that Sherry Ott had discovered, every step of my pilgrimage had been beautiful.

Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

Puenta La Reina Bridge – Camino de Santiago Arrows

There is no way you can get lost on the Camino de Santiago. Arrows, scallop shells and signs point you in the right direction at every bridge, road crossing and intersection.

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Reaching the top of Alto Pedron gave views back the way I had come from Pamplona, as well as views to where I was going. The rocky path on the way down proved to be my ultimate downfall, as my too small shoes caused my toes to smash into the front.

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

There were so many beautiful old churches along the Camino de Santiago. But since I was walking in early March, it seemed that most were yet to open for the busier summer season.

Church of Obanos

The Church of Obanos

And between every small village the well-maintained pathways of the French Way wound across the spectacular Spanish countryside.

The French Way - Camino de Santiago

The French Way – Camino de Santiago Photos

Puenta La Reina

Puenta La Reina in the evening

Puenta La Reina has one of the most amazing bridges I have ever seen. It was also the 1st village I had the pleasure of sleeping in after busy Pamplona.

Puenta la Reina Bridge and Sunrise

Puenta la Reina Bridge at sunrise

Most mornings I was up and walking before the sun began to sprinkle across the horizon.

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Every village and town was built on a small hill. Sure it looks beautiful until you realise you have to go back up again to go through them all!

Church of Santa Maria - Los Arcos

Church of Santa Maria in Los Arcos

While there were only about 20 pilgrims walking each section every day, it wasn’t uncommon for you to encounter them all. The people I met along the Camino de Santiago were some of the most inspiring and remarkable people I have ever spoken to. They are the ones that make the pilrgimage so special.

The endless French Way

The endless French Way

Irache Wine Fountain - Fuente del Vino

The free flowing Irache Wine Fountain or “Fuente del Vino”

Hay bales along the French Way

Hay bales along the French Way

Every village had at least one ancient church and it wasn’t uncommon to find them dotting the landscape in remote locations either.

Ermita de San Miguel

Ermita de San Miguel

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

I have travelled through Spain in the past, including cycling in Costa Brava and surfing in San Sebastian with both independent planning and a vacation planner. But having the opportunity to walk at my own pace through some of the most beautiful scenery in Spain on the Camino de Santiago has so far topped them all.

Natural arches - Camino de Santiago

Natural arches on the Camino de Santiago

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