Seeing the Whirling Dervishes wasn’t something that we set out to do whilst in Turkey, but we were in the right place at the right time.
The ceremony is four parts, and only one of these parts features the Dervishes whirling. It starts with a bow, nod, then the spinning begins. Two people with elevated spiritual status preside over the spinning, reminding us of a Greece-style 1960s dance contest judge. Within the whirling part of the ceremony, four separate whirls take place honouring different purposes.
Here is a time lapse video showing part of the whirling ceremony
If you don’t feel like watching, here are a few picture from the ceremony.
The cultural centre had the capacity for 3000 people, and it was over half full by our count predominately with Turkish tourists. We hypothesized we could count the number of Western tourists on one hand.
Konya is a very conservative city in central Turkey. The blue mosque is an iconic Turkish photo.
Outside of seeing the dervishes, we wandered an authentic food market, wishing we had a kitchen to cook. Interestingly this area is known for a blue type of cheese. There were also lots of olives, which are regulars on the standard Turkish breakfast plate.
We arrived in Konya from Egirdir, a small town on a lake in Turkey that not many people have heard of. We heard there was good hiking but couldn’t find much good information when we arrived. So our hike was more of a bushwhack expedition, and we eventually found the trail on our way back. We were trying to follow St Paul’s trail, tracking part of his travels in the fourth century.
Lucky for us a friend man gave us a lift up the long and steep road to the start of the mountain.
We found a turtle shell on the trail!