But only for a few days. We left Fés in Morocco yesterday around 1100 in the morning, bound for Tenerife-Norte (Los Rodeos) where we would have to pass immigration back into Spain. It was a long flight over the Atlantic ocean, and it took several hours before we first saw land again (Lanzarote).
We arrived at Tenerife at around 16.00 local time, knowing we had to leave for El Hierro as fast as we could, as the airport of El Hierro would close at 18.00.
But Murphy’s law started to wag its tail. The first delay happened because of a royal visit – the son of the King of Spain came in with his Dassault Falcon, and that grounded us for a significant amount of time. Then, when we were allowed to leave for El Hierro, the cloud ceiling had dropped to below 500 feet. Because of that, ATC no longer allowed us to depart under VFR.
Our OPS-team back in the Netherlands quickly came in to help and prepared an IFR-flightplan which was approved and active within minutes, so off we went. We tried to enjoy the spectacular scenery of the Canary Islands during the sunset, while we flew to El Hierro as fast as our Piper would allow us to. We touched down at El Hierro at 17.58, just minutes before closing.
Now came the driving part, and that would prove to be more tricky than flying. We had to drive to our hotel, but because of the recent volcanic activity on the island many main roads were closed. We had to drive during the night, over small and curved mountain roads. Visibility gradually dropped to 50 meters or less. It took us two hours, before we arrived at the hotel.
Today we relaxed at our hotel, enjoyed the mild temperatures of 20+ Celcius and had some fantastic scubadiving experiences. We will upload some videos as soon as we can. So stay tuned!
Tomorrow we will head for Africa again: Atar, Mauritania. We’ll be doing some trainspotting there!
We wanted to share some more information on our short stay in Fés, Morocco a few days ago. We visited the old Medina, the town center dating back to before medieval times. It is said not having changed a lot since then. At night, going in without a guide will get you lost within minutes because of the incredible darkness.
With daylight however, it is not much better. The system of small streets, lanes and alleys is insanely complicated, even for those with an extremely accurate sense of direction. So we took a guide, who led us through this fascinating first part of Africa!
We found a great, short youtube video for you about this fascinating city here!
Yesterday we left Valencia for Fés in Morocco around 10AM in the morning. Our initial plan was to fly via Gibraltar. However headwinds made us change our minds, and we flew south, along the Spanish coast. We crossed the Mediterranean Sea from Almeriá straight to Morocco, flying at 1000 feet altitude. The sea was quite crowded with ships heading to or from the funnel that is Gibraltar. A spectacular sight!
We crossed the Moroccan coastline somewhere west of Nador, from where we overflew the spectacular Atlas mountain range. We arrived in Fés at about 16.00 hours, where we were welcomed graciously by a very kind customs official. We spend our evening enjoying everything the old Medina of this historic city has to offer with its food, culture and hospitality.
Today we will leave Africa again for a short while, flying from Fés to El Hierro via Tenerifé. We really look forward to do some scuba diving there!