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A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

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London England
posts: 72
reviews: 7
A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

We are landing from Masa around 12.15pm on 29th July and then have a flight to Zanzibar aaround 6.30pm. We have use of a lounge at the Airport but wondered if there was something better we could do - say taxi to a decent restaurant, not too far from Airport so we dont have to be worried about traffic etc. Serena hotel looks nice and gets good reviews, being only 5km from airport. Any other suggestions or thoughts would be hugely appreciated

Thanks

nyc
posts: 13,337
1. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Even with a 12:15pm arrival at Wilson and flight to ZNZ from NBO/JKIA for this 'international' flight, you have to be at JKIA for checkin 2/hrs (lastest) prior. Midday NBO traffic can be horrific that even 5Km can take over 1/hr to transit. Maybe arrange with tour operator for meet/greet to a restaurant and then to JKIA. Or arrange for a taxi to handle.

Eating at a hotel can be expensive, maybe consider the outdoor cafe at Utamaduni Crafts in Karen which is priced right and service is pretty good. Am sure others will have ideas.

Remember you will require Yellow Fever inoc and proof of same for entry to ZNZ.

UK
Destination Expert
for Malindi, Ukunda, Kenya
posts: 4,322
reviews: 4
2. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Unfortunately, if you're arriving from the Maasai Mara at 12.15 on Monday 29 July (you may arrive a bit later, it depends on the number of camps from which passengers are being collected before the short flight to Nairobi), then need to check in for Zanzibar at JKIA (the international airport) by 4.30pm, then your options are a bit limited. I would head to the Ole-Sereni, which is close to Wilson Airport and en route to JKIA. They do good food and there's a reasonably pleasant deck overlooking the northeastern corner of Nairobi National Park, and they have a pool which you should be allowed to use if you're consuming food and drink. But you will probably only be there a couple of hours.

Nairobi hotels are notoriously optimistic about their distance from JKIA. The Ole-Sereni is the closest hotel to the airport at 12km (actually the Panari is a bit closer, but not worth having on your radar) and as for the Serena, it's close to the centre of town, and just under 17km from JKIA.

Further to Sandi's suggestion, Utamaduni's Verandah restaurant is meant to be great (I've never been), but it's just way too far out in the wrong direction to be worth considering. In Nairobi, there's nothing quite so stressful as sitting in stationary traffic for an hour or more and facing in the opposite direction from where you want to be going (it happens, all the time!).

Richard

Edited: 6:08 pm, July 08, 2013
Nairobi, Kenya
Destination Expert
for Kenya
posts: 2,054
reviews: 147
3. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Also have a look at the Aero Club at Wilson Airport for lunch. Really good food and great value of money. The you can head to JKIA by 3.00 pm for a 4.30 pm check in

London England
posts: 72
reviews: 7
4. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Thanks for all the advice and helpful tips. Will probably look into the Aero club as that maybe a little less stressful than going out and about with the city traffic.

All very excited about our trip now.

nyc
posts: 13,337
5. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

How could I have forgotten the Aero Club. Right there at Wilson and pretty good.

Recent article about their new chef with raves, in local magazine (name of which I don't recall).

We enjoyed our quick lunch which was priced well from what I recall on menu, though we didn't pay the bill.

Washington DC...
posts: 687
reviews: 27
6. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Can you also use the pool at aeroclub is you eat and drink there? Is there a changing area?

Nairobi, Kenya
Destination Expert
for Kenya
posts: 2,054
reviews: 147
7. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

The pool is exclusively for Aero Club Members. Also there is a bar area that is exclusively for Aero Club Member only. You will have access to the restaurant, and lawn area only. The bill for your drinks will be different/separate to the bill for food, as the bar is run by the Club and restaurant is outsourced.

As Sandi says, the food is excellent. We usually have breakfast there. Check in at Safari Link and then get dropped off to the Aero Club. We ask Safari Link to pick us up from there when they are transferring passengers to the departure area.

London England
posts: 72
reviews: 7
8. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

Thanks . Do anyone know roughly how long it will take us to get to the Aero club from Wilsons airport and similarly how long it will take us to get back to JK airport. Have looked it up on google maps and the restaurant seems to be the opposite direction from JK airport. Am just a little concerned about the traffic.

THanks once again for all the help and advice.

London, United...
posts: 990
9. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

janks,.

The Aero Club effectively is at Wilson Airport, which, as you are coming in from the Mara, is where you will land.

To Jomo by taxi, late afternoon, as it will be, around 40mins, but give it an hour, you never know with the traffic!

Indianapolis...
posts: 97
reviews: 8
10. Re: A few hours to kill in Nairobi.....

We just left the Mara on June 28th and had a lunch at the Aero Club. Will most definitely look into staying at the Aero next time we have an overnight from the Mara. Food was good! A must!