We then had a layover at Istanbul Atatürk Airport, which is not a bad place to spend around 4 hours, with a good selection of restaurants & cafes and a variety of duty free 'temptations'.
Our next flight was to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, were we arrived at about 4am (Tanzania time). Here we had our visas checked and a word of warning is to be ready to wait - it does take some time and we were a bit unlucky of merging in with another two flights. Also it is important to check which type of visa you require and if you need to do it before or if it can be obtained there and then at the airport (in fact for Maltese citizens we found that it can be done at the airport itself).
After the visa check point, we simply got our bags from the baggage claim and although we had another flight we had to walk out of the airport, only to re-enter from another door a few meters away. Here you are greeted with a full security check with x-ray machines and all before actually entering the departures lounge. Important to note that if you need to buy water or to smoke, this can only be done outside of the departures lounge and it takes a lot of convincing for the guys to let you out again (which is understandable for security reasons). So here we had another 2 hours or so of waiting and top tip is "use your mosquito repellent" - they are everywhere!
|Dar es Salaam Departures Lounge|
|Waiting at the Departure Gates - Dar es Salaam Airport|
|Our aircraft to Kilimanjaro|
|Loading the vans for the trip to Marangu|
Finally we arrived at Marangu Hotel, which is a very nice and welcoming complex of bungalow style rooms, with beautiful green gardens and an amazing bar (yes that was important!!). Also wifi was available, which was a good thing to reach out back home after all that travel time. From here the day was mainly allocating the rooms, sorting our gear and getting aquatinted with the hotel grounds, relaxing a bit.
|Marangu Hotel Gardens|