Loading...

The Travel Episodes

Off-Road to Istanbul

The big goal

Jonas, Robin, Lucas and Peter are going on an off-road trip across Eastern Europe. Their car? A four-by-four. Their destination? Istanbul. They’re four friends on the adventure of a lifetime – a journey into freedom and the unknown.

Hi! We’re Jonas, Robin, Lucas and Peter, and we’ve known each other since the good old days at school. We’ve travelled pretty extensively, mostly backpacking. We travel so that we can get to know other people and other countries, and not just to cram in as much sightseeing as possible.

We’d like you to join us on our greatest journey. We’ve got three stories for you about our adventure, three specific moments out of the many we experienced on our way to Istanbul: stumbling across ibexes in the Alps and nearly being defeated by the mountain on our way back down; meeting with corruption and fraud rather than hospitality on the Croatian border; and, by contrast, bumping into some unexpectedly friendly officials in a Turkish nature park, who chaperoned not only us but our dinner. And then… we arrived in Istanbul, our final destination, and somewhere you really need to experience…

May we introduce ourselves?

 
 

The Chef
Peter is an indispensible part of the team. Without him we’d probably have starved to death on our adventure. Whipping up pancakes with banana and apple filling on a gas cooker in the middle of the Turkish steppes? Not a problem for Peter!

The Chef
Peter is an indispensible part of the team. Without him we’d probably have starved to death on our adventure. Whipping up pancakes with banana and apple filling on a gas cooker in the middle of the Turkish steppes? Not a problem for Peter!

The Co-ordinator
Lucas always knows where we are and where to go next. Intuitively. When he tells us to ‘turn here!’ there’s no argument, and on the odd occasion when he does make a mistake, it must be down to the out-dated map. Thanks to him, we made it to even the most out-of-the-way places.

The Co-ordinator
Lucas always knows where we are and where to go next. Intuitively. When he tells us to ‘turn here!’ there’s no argument, and on the odd occasion when he does make a mistake, it must be down to the out-dated map. Thanks to him, we made it to even the most out-of-the-way places.

The Goalie
Robin is always there when things go south. He’s our rush goalie, helping out wherever he’s needed. Chopping onions, importing images, taking down the tent or amusing the driver – Robin is a helpful jack-of-all-trades. Plus he’s got an incredible eye for a photogenic scene.

The Goalie
Robin is always there when things go south. He’s our rush goalie, helping out wherever he’s needed. Chopping onions, importing images, taking down the tent or amusing the driver – Robin is a helpful jack-of-all-trades. Plus he’s got an incredible eye for a photogenic scene.

The Driver
Jonas is our driver. When we’re in a hurry, he’ll sometimes drive non-stop for two days and nights, with steppes, mountains, valleys and forests literally flying by! Then up goes the tent: a bowline here, a taut line hitch there – Jonas is unbeatable when it comes to sailor’s knots.

The Driver
Jonas is our driver. When we’re in a hurry, he’ll sometimes drive non-stop for two days and nights, with steppes, mountains, valleys and forests literally flying by! Then up goes the tent: a bowline here, a taut line hitch there – Jonas is unbeatable when it comes to sailor’s knots.

Travelling is so much more than the sum of the places you’ve been
When it comes to travelling, it’s not about places, sightseeing or warm weather. Travelling fades out the hustle and bustle of modern life. It’s about gazing up into starry skies and seeing the Milky Way, about the sound of birds and the scent of fresh dew. In fact, this is completely normal – or natural, anyway. Far removed from the growl of traffic, amplified announcements, aircraft noise and smartphone ringtones, human beings’ natural environment sounds completely different: peaceful, natural. And what’s really astonishing is that you can suddenly hear something completely new: yourself. You’re no longer constantly assailed by the endless hubbub of the modern world, and you’re free. Where are we going today? Well, let’s see where my feet take me!

 
DenTagVersüßen
 
 
Travel brings people together
In a foreign country, a stranger from your homeland is your friend. The familiarity of home draws you together, no matter whether you have anything in common. You chat, tell stories and help each other out, all because of home.

Yet more affecting is the friendliness of the locals. Anybody who really wants to get to know a country has to engage with its people: talk to them, stay overnight with them, eat with them. What makes a country unforgettable isn’t its buildings, landscape, animals or GDP – mostly, it’s the people. It’s those moments where you really connect with a stranger, despite not speaking the same language. Moments where you forget where you come from and where you are, and throw yourself whole-heartedly into the traditions and customs of the locals.

‘Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — I took the one less traveled by. 
And that has made all the difference.’

Robert Frost

We need a reliable vehicle.
One that will take us anywhere, even to the most far-flung corners of the map.

A vehicle that, in a pinch, can be repaired with a wire and a piece of cord. We’re travelling with a Jeep Wrangler and an off-road tent trailer. For five weeks we’ve called the trailer our home. For five weeks it’s given us a roof over our heads, a shelter from the wind, a roomy cargo area and a comfortable place to sleep.

Why Turkey?
Before, in the good old days, when mum and dad were choosing where to go on holiday, we all spent plenty of time on the Turkish Riviera, getting to know a Turkey characterised by huge hotels and bustling, touristy bazaars. Turkish friends, however, spoke of minarets, hospitality and gorgeous countryside. And as this was very different to the impressions we formed during our travels through Asia and America, we all soon agreed to go.

 
 
Tuerkei_11
 
 

This is the story of our journey to Istanbul.

But in reality, it’s not the destination that’s important. This is a story about a journey, about being young and impetuous. And it’s a challenge. Get out there! Pack your things and set off. Seek far-away lands and find a home. Nothing is as valuable as the experiences you’ll have – no book or film on earth can replace that.
 
 
Our first destination is the Benediktenwand in the Bavarian Prealps. According to an old folk tale, the mighty mountain ridge rests on four golden columns and contains a vast trove of treasure. We’d like to take a closer look.

Part 2: Across (Goat) Country

Read more

Across (Goat) Country

2. Austria

Across (Goat) Country

Our first destination is the Benediktenwand in the Bavarian Prealps. According to an old folk tale, the mighty mountain ridge rests on four golden columns and contains a vast trove of treasure. We’d like to take a closer look.

Start Episode

An Episode by

Off-Road to Istanbul

Peter, Lucas, Robin & Jonas

Peter Hartlieb, Lucas Körner, Robin Bugdahn and Jonas Hermann have known each other for ages, ever since the good old days at school. When they’re not travelling to the four corners of the globe, the friends are studying or working on creative projects together under the name Jvgnd Stijl.

Readers Mail

Tell us what you think

Deine E-Mail-Adresse wird nicht veröffentlicht. Erforderliche Felder sind mit * markiert.

  • Ulla on 16. August 2015

    Schöner Bericht! Sehr motivierend! Freu mich schon aufs 2. Kapitel…!

    Reply
  • Dagmar Schulz on 14. Februar 2016

    Wow, endlich mal wieder eine Reisebeschreibung mit Tiefgang und Leichtigkeit gleichzeitig. Danke für die Motivation, mich einmal über Berlin hinaus nach Osten zu wenden und diese Stadt zu besuchen.

    Reply

Overview

Antarctica