Tigrai churches and private transport
Replies: 7 - Last Post: Sep 12, 2013 2:46 PM Last Post By: salamasoa
Sep 6, 2013 2:54 AM
Tigrai churches and private transportHi all,
I'll be travelling to Ethiopia with a friend in November and was wondering if you could help with some advice for our Tigrai trip. Here's what we're thinking:
Day 1 Saturday (after a week in Addis for work conferences) - fly from Addis to Mekele in the morning, arrange onward transport for the next day, stay at an inexpensive hotel in town (maybe Atse Yohannis or Ras Alula?)
Day 2 Sunday - travel from Mekele to Hawzien, visiting Abreha We Atsbeha, Yohannis Maikudi and Abuna Abraham Debre Tsion on the way (should be possible to visit all three in the same day with private transport and an early start?), stay at Gheralta Lodge
Day 3 Monday - visit Abuna Yemata Guh (can we walk/bike here all the way from Hawzien or do we need private transport? really looking forward to this!) and stay at Gheralta Lodge
Day 4 Tuesday - travel back to Mekele from Hawzien, visiting the Teka Tesfai churches on the way (should be possible to visit all three in the same day with private transport?), stay at an inexpensive hotel in town (maybe Atse Yohannis or Ras Alula?)
Day 5 Wednesday - fly from Mekele to Addis in the early morning, fly home from Addis in the late afternoon
Does all of this seem doable?
I guess we'll need private transport for days 2 and 4 (and maybe also day 3)? Should this be easy to arrange in Mekele and approximately how much should we expect to pay per day? We don't have a big budget but I suppose it wouldn't be feasible to do what we're trying to do by public transport in the amount of time that we have so we'll have to bite the bullet. I can't see any details about 4x4 (or car?) hire in Mekele in the Bradt guide so any recommendations or information would be appreciated.
Should we just take a guide from the Tigrai Tourist Commission in Mekele with us to visit all of the churches or is it better to find one from the Gheralta Guides Association for Abuna Yemata Guh? Does anyone know if drivers and guides are accommodated at Gheralta Lodge?
Re domestic flight prices and booking, the Addis - Mekele return is predictably very high on the Ethiopian Airlines website, around $370, but I've got a local quote from Blue Sky Ethiopia (recommended on this forum) for $160 which seems a lot better! Does that sound about right? They appear to have very good reviews online so I hope booking through them will be ok.
Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer!
Sep 6, 2013 5:23 AM
1please contact with Royal Ethiopia tours at Mekelle they will bought to all the tickets for me and my wife the ticket was 150USD for Addiss- Mekelle -Addiss also they provide us a four wheel drive with their Guide his name Tewelde on the price of 140 per day but they told meby Minibus it was lower. also they reserve for us one night at Gheralta Lodge with out any commission they are very friendly contact them at email@example.com
Sep 7, 2013 6:20 AM
Sep 8, 2013 1:54 AM
Sep 9, 2013 6:45 AM
4Thanks for these replies. Any idea of the typical cost of 4x4 hire (including fuel) per day? I've heard that booking transport through Gheralta Lodge is more expensive than organising directly with 4x4 drivers in Mekele. Their website quotes 1,600 birr (so $85) per day - does this sound reasonable?
Sep 11, 2013 1:21 AM
Sep 11, 2013 11:08 AM
6Private transport is very expensive in Ethiopia… you pay usually around $100.
As far as I remember you have to pay a deposit (30%) in advance. The company (the owner is Mr. Ekubatson in Hawzien) is very reliable (always on time) and the driver was good too… that was NOT the case on our other car-rentals. If you stay in GL it's best to book their driver.
Sep 12, 2013 2:46 PM
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