Kars

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<map lat="40.59866408952" lng="43.10173062439" zoom="14" view="4" float="right" height="300" width ="300" country="Turkey" />

Kars, in north-eastern Turkey, is the capital and largest city of the Kars province in Eastern Anatolia. The city lies within 70km of the Armenian border, which is closed and is the largest city in range of the Georgia border, which is open.

Hitching out

West towards Erzurum

There are two options for this direction:

  1. The key to hitch-hiking out of Kars is to get to the bypass (E697 / D965) that runs around the south of the city. From the corner of Erzurum-Kars Karayolu and A.Gaffar Okkan Blv you will have no problem getting a lift. To get there, from the street Davut Aksu Cd take a bus in the direction of Şube şefligi, a factory complex on the edge of town.
  2. The old road to Erzurum starts right in the city center, you can walk there. It's not a main road any more, so there is only local traffic, but you can still hitch a ride because after a few kilometres, the road passes very close to the main road (you can see it) and you can just walk 200 m over the fields.

East towards Ani

Ani is 45 km due east of Kars and located on the Armenian border (which is closed). You can get a lift by walking out of town and thumbing. There are several villages along the way, and a school bus back to Kars on weekdays at 15:00. There are several dolmuşes that pass along this way at that time, mostly taking students and teachers. The cost from Kars to Ani is normally 7.5TL.

The dolmuş from Kars to Ani goes once per day at around 12pm from Halk Bank.

Experience towards Ani

In June 2015, Marion_and_John hitched from Kars to Ani and back. It took us 5 lifts to get to Ani (cumulated waiting time: 45 minutes) and 1 back to Kars (waiting time:10' at 4pm). Traffic is very light but probability of getting a lift on a given car is large. There is a great area to pitch a tent if you start late: after about 9kms after the intersection of E691 (road Ardahan-Erzurum) and D070 (road to Ani), the road gets to a path (1950m). The two hills on the right (south-west side) makes for scenic camping. Marion_and_John camped at 40°36.327'Nx43°19.413'E.

Links

a really useful guide to hitch-hiking in Turkey

a beautiful photo gallery of nearby Ani