Kenya Trip Report Part 14 – Back to Nairobi and Carnivore

Stopping at the Rift Valley

It was hard to believe that this was our last day in Kenya. We still had a long drive and two long flights ahead of us, but we enjoyed a last breakfast at Tipilikwani with Kehara and got ready to leave for Nairobi. We left the camp around 10am for the drive back to Nairobi.

We pretty much drove straight out of the park, but we made a quick detour to see some lions with a freshly killed giant antelope.

We exited the park and drove toward Narok, where we stopped quickly for me to get my last batch of Kenyan shillings from an ATM so that I had some cash for souvenir shopping and a tip for Kehara.

Past Narok, we continued on to Nairobi and saw some different landscapes. We made a stop at the Great Rift Valley that runs from Lebanon to Southern Africa.

It was pretty scary on the mountain roads and switchbacks with big trucks passing blindly, but we made it to Nairobi and stopped at a few places, including a great souvenir store, a bead factory and a leather factory.

Around 6pm, we made it to Carnivore, a world-famous churrascaria restaurant in the Nairobi suburbs. Imraan had graciously paid for our dinner there as a birthday present to me and we also invited Kehara to join us.

Indoor/outdoor seating

We started with the specialty drink and the salads and then enjoyed the varied meats on offer.

Specialty drink: Dawa

At the end of dinner, a birthday dessert with a sparkler was brought out and the staff sang Happy Birthday to me. Imraan stopped by to say goodbye and bring us some souvenir tribal blankets. I heartily recommend Best Camping & Tours as they provided great service throughout the booking (and re-booking) process and on the ground in Kenya.

Then it was time to head to the airport. Traffic was much heavier than when we arrived. Kehara dropped us at the busy SkyTeam international departures terminal around 9:15pm for our 11:59pm flight and we said our goodbyes. We were flying in business class, so we were able to stand in the much shorter line to enter the terminal. It still took about ½ hour to make it past the initial security check and inside the terminal.

This time, we checked our bags all the way through to Atlanta and just brought our backpacks for the flights. We went through passport control where there was no wait and then through security where again there was no line.

Farewell Kenya

We found the Kenya Airways Pride Lounge fairly easily and waited there until it was time to board. Nobody was hungry, but I did get some pictures of the food and drink selection. There was a hot and cold buffet and a halal section too.

There was reliable and fast Wi-Fi for everyone to download some stuff to watch on the flights. There were also nice bathrooms with showers available. We did find the lounge (and the airport generally) a bit too warm, but given the climate in Nairobi (70s and 80s during the day and 50s and 60s at night pretty much all year round), I can see why they don’t bother paying to install A/C most places.

Around 11pm, we walked over to our gate, passing some nice looking shops and restaurants. Then we had two more passport checks before being allowed into the holding pen for the flight. On the whole, the terminal at Nairobi is much nicer than T5 at O’Hare.

Up Next: KLM 777-300 NBO-AMS – Overnight to Europe

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