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Trip Reports / Kenya Safari TR
« on: July 20, 2015, 07:14:49 AM »
Part 1

An African safari was always something on my agenda. This year it actually became a reality. Due to last minute planning, we weren’t lucky enough to get the flights we hoped for and were therefore forced to take any available routing.

 We would fly SFO-DXB-NBO on EK F and return NBO-ADD-LHR-SFO on ET and UA J with drives and hoppers once we were in Kenya. We wanted to do things differently, so instead of doing the typical Kruger Park etc, we opted for the more “authentic feel” and enlisted the help of a travel agency which did a phenomenal job tailoring a trip for us in Kenya.

The lounge in SFO was very empty and quiet and the flight was uneventful though the service was a bit underwhelming.


Lounge in SFO




The food was quite unappetizing, but I wasn’t expecting anything edible anyways.






We landed at 7:30pm which gave us enough time to check in to the Conrad and head out for our 10:00 Burj and a chance to check out the mall. We attempted chauffeur service and was denied because the perk is no more with Alaskan bookings. An Uber would have to suffice.




Our upgraded suite


Hotel Lobby

The train was cheap and only a few stops from the Conrad, so we figured it would be a way to see more of the city. We took a cab back because we were tired from all that walking in the mall.


Our train stop

I would have loved to be at the Burj during sunset, but that obviously wasn’t possible. It was fairly quiet though because of Ramadan.

Our flight out to NBO was 10:45 and I wanted to catch a morning swim, but the pool was too hot!


It looked so inviting.

We had the entire cabin to ourselves which was especially nice as there was a plane change with the updated suite configuration.

We landed in Nairobi at 4:30. We were transported by bus to immigration which is in a parking lot because the main terminal burned down in 2013. Our body temperature was checked with infrared prior to passport control - I guess this is normal practice? We were worried that our food was going to be confiscated as it contained meat. We actually had a full freezer bag which contained jerky, cold cuts and a bunch of frozen double wrapped meals that we will have heated for us at our camp. Thank you Dan for the Polar Bear bag recommendation! The items remained frozen for hours in the Dubai heat.

After our original plan to take Uber was scrapped because a lack of internet - which would have been free with T-Mobile, we took a pre paid fare to the Hilton. In hindsight, that was a much better outcome as traffic in Nairobi is from the worst in the world and Uber probably would have turned out more expensive.

We arrived at the Hilton 18km, $20 and 1.5 hours later.

We got upgraded to a suite because of our diamond status. I am genuinely concerned to know what a typical room looked like. We chose Hilton because it was the only name we recognized. It is a decrepit piece of crap.

 




We wanted to take a look around town and were informed to leave all valuables behind; I therefore don't have any pictures from the streets. When we asked where we should walk, the response was "don't go that way" pointing to the left; we heeded his warning. We dropped by the lounge for a quick local beer and headed out; to the right.
After a short walk we made our way back to the hotel for safety concerns.
Tomorrow we drive to Lake Nakuru.
 

Lounge at the Hilton


Lobby


View of traffic from our room





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