Posted December 2, 2009 by David McGuinness

I met with Remsey this morning and we drove about an hour to Hosap. There, perched on a hill is the stunning Hosap Castle. After exploring the castle built in the mid-seventeenth century and stopping for pictures at various angles we stopped in the village below for some tea.

From Hosap we drove to the site of Cavustepe, an ancient site dating back to the 8th Century BC. There are no buildings here to wow you but the history of it is very important and interesting.

From Cavustepe we drove back to Van and I caught a minibus to the extensive site of Van Castle. After Hosap castle I was sure Van castle would disappoint but I was quite wrong happily. This picturesque castle sprawls over a hillside overlooking the city of Van with some stunning views.

The castle itself is also very photogenic and I quickly filled up my memory card snapping away in the lovely afternoon light.

There are also various other buildings in the vicinity, in what is known as Eski Van, or Old Van, including a church, several mosques, stone bridges and tombs. After wandering around for a couple of hours I was getting tired and caught a bus back to town where I arranged by bus ticket to Kars. A bus from Van to Kars! A little surreal…

This blog is part of an Off-The-Beaten-Track Travel Diary. Click on the links below to navigate through this journey.

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