hi MCP, I've just returned from riding a similar route. went from Ancona to Cesme on a 2day 3 night ferry, into Turkey round the Agean and med coast then inland to Konya, Cappadoccia and east to Sivas, Erzerum, then Hopa on the Black Sea Coast and then west across the black sea coast to Istanbul, into Greece via Ipsala, following the coast to Athens and back to Italy from Patras to Ancona, 20 hours. Black Sea region worth a look, Sumelli Monastery near Trabson worth a look, Synop also a nice place. Ca'nt say about Istanbul cos we only travelled passed it on our way to Greece. the coastal route from here to athens is a mostly good scenic route. D o call and see the Acropolis well worth the effort, likewise Siena and Florence in Italy. the only downer was the speed limits in Turkey, 70 kph on ordinary roads and 90 kph on motorways and yes there are speed traps, everywhere so enjoy your trip and watch out for the Radar, Plumbob.
[This message has been edited by plumbob (edited 11 May 2003).]