Day 1 (September 10, 2013)   Flight to Nairobi


 Flight to Nairobi 

   This first day is entirely spent on the flight to Nairobi.

   We must be at airport with time enough for boarding in the Turkish airlines flight to Istanbul at 12:25 PM.

   After a flight of 3 hours and a half we would arrive to Istanbul, but only for a three hours of transit to our flight to Nairobi, scheduled for 7:50 PM. This is a night flight and will take us to the Kenya capital in around 6 hours and a half.

   As we will arrive so late, at 2:25 AM, a driver will be waiting for us to take us directly to the hotel. Our tasks in the airport are just getting our visas and some cash from an ATM.


   The day goes by in airports and planes. The Turkish airlines ones have the individual screen, although it’s only the one in the 6 hours flight to Nairobi which allows choosing contents between a long list of movies.

Turkish airlines planeArriving

  When we land in Kenya’s capital, at 2:20 AM, we meet the chaos which, by the moment, we don’t know if it is endemic to the whole country or it is just due to the big fire which destroyed this international airport one month ago.

   We expected some tracks from that fire but we didn’t expect such destruction as per the whole arrivals part of the airport be set in a tented camp.

   This way, when leaving the plane a school bus is waiting for us – the name of the school is at both sides of the bus – to take us to a big tent with some small canopies around, all in white. Inside, some tables have been set to attend people incoming to the country.

Provisional arrivals area of Nairobi airport
  As use to happen to us, our queue is the slowest and we will be one of the last on leaving the place with our visas and entry stamps, which are get now in a single procedure by the man in the table.

   In the short walk to the baggage area, there is one table with a blackboard showing the money exchange rates where we only exchange 80€ for our first expenses as it is quite pricy. We can guess now we’re not going to find an ATM here.

Arrivals area in the airport   Once with our baggage we must pass through a small customs area where an officer is forced to decide so often who can leave without being checked. We’re one of those.

   Outside we can see a group of local people after a police cordon. These are there to pick up people or getting some money for any service. Our name is not in the several signs standing drivers are showing, so we come back to the safe area after the cordon.

   Through it we accept the help of one man who uses his cell phone to call our hotel. When I can talk to them I’m relief of hearing my name, in a confirmation they were the hotel indeed.

   He takes us to the parking with the idea of driving us to the hotel, but then he receives a call from our driver who seems to be close and ask the man to wait for him.

   We spend some strange time there, in the middle of a parking area, with the company of a stranger who calls every when and then to our driver and with a continuous walking of people. We’re concerned about being there, so late at night in a city which can be dangerous. We’re recalling of this point seeing some of the men walking around are military armed men who are there for our protection. Bush House room
   Finally, our driver arrives and our desired meeting with our bed is closer. We give a tip to our friend for the calls and the support and get into the car. Our driver shows us the cause of the problem: we can see big white tents and a big parking too in a different side of the airport, so it seems there are various arrivals areas and everyone have the exit on a different place, so, not knowing where we’re going to arrive, the best option is waiting in the biggest area, used by the most. It’s just a matter of odds.

   So that is the reason we’re at bed at 5 AM, under our first mosquito net and over a big bed in the middle of a spicy room.