Ethiopia & Eritrea: travel books to read before you go
This excerpt from Lonely Planet’s Ethiopia & Eritrea guide provides a selection of travel literature to get you in the mood for your trip...
Places in Eritrea
Ah, Asmara. Arrive here on a clear day, and you’ll fall in love with this diamond of a capital. Peaceful neighbourhoods, pavement cafés with vintage Italian coffee machines, cheery pizza parlours, tantalising pastry shops, a relaxed pace of life… You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to a southern Italian town.
Though only about 100km to the east of Asmara, Massawa could not be more different from the capital. Entering the old town, you could be forgiven for thinking you’re in Zanzibar or Yemen, and it’s pure joy to explore the alleyways and streets flanked by low whitewashed buildings, porticoes and arcades.
The Red Sea Coast
Luckily, the Eritrean coast has remained wild, pristine and untouched – nothing comparable with, say, Egypt. There’s a lot to love about this area: hundreds of kilometres of luscious coastline, a historic city and a fantastic archipelago. Discover this region before everyone else does.