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Arrival in Addis Ababa

We started driving at 8am and arrived at 3pm in our hotel in Addis Ababa. Compared what we usually spent for accommodation the hotel was quite pricy charging us 100 USD per room and night. Therefore, we were promised some fancy features such as a sauna and a gym. After arrival four of us went to check them out. The gym was actually a completely empty room. At least you have enough space to use your body weight to work out. The sauna was really existing but very small. We switched it on and an hour later the four of us were sweating. Since we are in Ethiopia every service has an additional cost and so we needed to pay 80 Birr (4.70 USD) per person for using the sauna for up to two hours.

In the evening six of us wanted to go out and have Sushi which was said to be very good in Addis Ababa. However, all restaurant guides were only listing one Japanese restaurant without supplying any address data and the staff of our hotel didn’t know the restaurant. Therefore, we changed our plans and went to another recommended place serving all kinds of chicken. When calling for a taxi we were shocked how expensive Addis Ababa is compared to the rural areas. The taxi driver requested 300 Birr (17.6 USD) for a 10 minutes taxi ride to the restaurant. We therefore stopped multiple taxis and negotiated prices. Finally, we ended up with six people squeezed into one taxi, two at the front next to the driver and four in the back for a fare of 100 Birr.

The food at the chicken place was very delicious. Only ordering food was a little pain. The menu had maybe 50 different items but it turned out that only two of the dishes were actually available. The waiter didn’t communicate this fact straight away but let us order what we want and came back ten minutes later that the food we ordered was actually not available. We repeated this order process three times until we figured out which dishes were actually available.

For the drive back to the hotel we used the same procedure of six people in one taxi. Since there were no fancy bars or nightclubs in the area of our hotel we purchased some beer and wine (for 40 Birr / 2.40 USD a bottle) and started a party in one of our hotel rooms. During the party we jointly were filling out one copy of the end of trip questionnaire for our journey from Gondar to Addis Ababa. This ended up in a very entertaining activity since we were making up funny facts to mess up the whole questionnaire and submitted it anonymously by slipping it under the door of our leader.

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