Ethiopia holiday, Ethiopia in Depth
Optional single supplement from £420 - £570.
Minimum age 16.
Description of Ethiopia holiday, Ethiopia in Depth
This Ethiopia holiday reveals Ethiopia in depth, visiting some of the country’s most celebrated sites, but also venturing off the tried and trusted routes to discover the little visited region of Tigrai, in the northeast of the country. Here, a number of extraordinary churches have been carved into rocks, outcrops and the sides of cliffs, all in different styles and sizes. Many are still used as places of worship today.
This Ethiopia tour begins by following the wonderful northern circuit, beginning in Addis Ababa before flying to Bahar Dar - a chance to enjoy amazing views over the immense Ethiopian Plateau and its gorges. We’ll take a boat trip on Lake Tana and visit its monasteries, travel to Gondar to see the spectacular castles here and to the Simien Mountains, to enjoy views from the highland plateau, looking out for the famous Gelada baboons that live here. The tour ends by visiting Lalibela’s monolithic rock hewn churches, with an optional mule ride and hike to one of the most remote churches which is built on a ridge with long views over the landscape.
Travel is by mini bus or coaster bus and there are two internal flights.
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4 Reviews of Ethiopia holiday, Ethiopia in Depth
Reviewed on 17 Feb 2020 by Annamaria DezseryEthiopia is a beautiful and very varied country with an ancient history and proud people and there were too many memorable parts to choose from. Read full review
Reviewed on 02 Mar 2019 by Baron-Vahl AmosGetting up close to the Geladas was the most memorable part of the holiday Read full review
Reviewed on 03 Oct 2018 by Lynley MarettThe Guide Gabre was very good and the schedule followed was as intended with mostly full days and a variety of experiences provided. Read full review
Reviewed on 02 Oct 2018 by Melanie WestA great experience. Read full review
We aim to benefit Ethiopian communities as much as possible by stopping to use local restaurants, Tej cafes and services as much as possible. For example, we encourage clients to take the optional mule trip to Ashatan Maryam as local people who run these excursions rely on tourism for income. We operate on a strict ‘leave no trace’ policy and local guides enforce this through responsible tourism briefings. These should help clients better understand the living situation for many and the environmental issues in the area.
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
PeopleAccommodation and Meals:
You will spend 11 nights in comfortable hotels and 2 nights in more basic hotels. Accommodation will be locally staffed as per law in Ethiopia, which is a benefit to local communities. Hotels provide plentiful, locally sourced breakfasts and where meals are not provided, your local guide will be able to recommend the best restaurants and cafes wherever you are. This is a wonderful opportunity to support businesses in the area and to explore Ethiopia’s delicious cuisine. At the marketplace in Bahar Dar, clients can buy fresh produce and even see the local specialty ‘enjera’ being made. This is sour dough made from a grain called ‘teff’ and is used as a scoop to eat from warm, and often spicy, casserole dishes known as ‘wat.’
Local Craft and Culture:
There is plenty of culture to discover in Ethiopia and we include several cultural and historical sites on this itinerary. We start at Addis Ababa and visit the National Museum, Menelik’s Mausoleum and Holy Trinity Church- Ethiopia’s main cathedral. We also visit some of the monasteries and churches around the thirty or so islands of Lake Tana, 17th and 18th century castles in Gondar, the tombs and stelae of Axum and the rock-hewn churches of Abreha Wo Atsebeha, Wukro Cherkos and Labilela. Our entry fees contribute to the preservation of many of these important places, whilst we can also support locals by purchasing souvenirs in and around these monuments. There are handmade religious crafts such as traditional paintings, icons and wooden crosses on our trip to Bahirddar, Gondar, Axum and Labilela.
Arriving in Gondar we will stop by the Kindu Trust, a local organisation which works with disadvantaged children, their families and communities. We receive a briefing on their projects and are shown their small handicrafts shop where clients can purchase souvenirs including baskets, textiles, prayer beads and jewellery. These are all made by the beneficiaries of the Trust and profits fund their activities. Occasionally we stop at villages or schools where clients can also leave behind much needed educational supplies such as pens and notebooks.
This small group tour has a maximum of 18 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.