Addis Ababa

Sights

Top ChoiceMuseum in Addis Ababa

Ethnological Museum

Ethnological Museum

Set within Haile Selassie’s former palace, and surrounded by the beautiful gardens and fountains of the university’s main campus, is the enthralling Ethnological Museum. Even if you’re not a museum fan, this one...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Addis Ababa

National Museum

National Museum

The collection on show at the National Museum is ranked among the most important in sub-Saharan Africa, but sadly many of its exhibits are poorly labelled, lit and displayed. Far and away the highlight is the...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Addis Ababa

'Red Terror' Martyrs Memorial Museum

'Red Terror' Martyrs Memorial Museum

‘As if I bore them all in one night, they slew them in a single night.’ These were the words spoken by the mother of four teenage children all killed on the same day by the Derg, as she officially opened the...

Top ChoiceChurch in Addis Ababa

St George Cathedral & Museum

St George Cathedral & Museum

Commissioned by Emperor Menelik II to commemorate his stunning 1896 defeat of the Italians in Adwa, and dedicated to St George (Ethiopia’s patron saint), whose icon was carried into the battle, this Piazza...

Church in Addis Ababa

Holy Trinity Cathedral

Holy Trinity Cathedral

This massive and ornate cathedral is the second-most important place of worship in Ethiopia (ranking behind the Old Church of St Mary of Zion in Aksum). It’s also the celebrated final resting place of Emperor...

Church in Addis Ababa

Washa Mikael Church

The Washa Mikael Church is a few kilometres east of Addis Ababa's town centre. Though local priests date it back to the 3rd century AD, it most probably dates back to the 12th century. If you’re mad and not...

Market in Addis Ababa

Merkato

Merkato

Wading into the market chaos known as Merkato, just west of Addis' centre, can be as rewarding as it is exasperating. You may find the most eloquent aroma wafting from precious incense. You may also find that...

Monument in Addis Ababa

Lion of Judah Monument

Long the symbol of Ethiopia’s monarchy, the Lion of Judah is ubiquitous throughout the country – and although images of the almighty animal abound in Addis Ababa, it’s the storied history of the Lion of Judah...

Church in Addis Ababa

Bete Maryam Mausoleum

The Bete Maryam Mausoleum is located just south of Menelik’s palace and offers what could be an enchantingly eerie experience for travellers (were it not for security personnel at every turn). If you're lucky,...

Gallery in Addis Ababa

Afewerk Tekle’s Home & Studio

A member of several international academies and with a drawer full of international decorations – about 100 at last count, including the British Order of Merit – Afewerk Tekle is considered among Africa’s...

Monument in Addis Ababa

Derg Monument

The towering Derg Monument is one of the more poignant reminders of the country’s painful communist rule. Topped by a massive red star and emblazoned with a golden hammer and sickle, the cement obelisklike...

Library in Addis Ababa

Institute of Ethiopian Studies

Inside the grounds of Addis Ababa University, this institute boasts the world’s best collection of books in English on Ethiopia. It’s free for a half-day’s casual use. If you're having trouble finding it, ask at...

Viewpoint in Addis Ababa

Entoto Panoramic Viewpoint

High on Entoto Mountain, there’s a terrific but windy panoramic view of Ethiopia's modern capital spread out below through the towering eucalyptus trees.

Notable Building in Addis Ababa

Africa Hall

Africa Hall

Built in 1961 by Emperor Haile Selassie, Africa Hall (near Meskal Sq) is the seat of the UN’s Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). The Italian-designed building isn’t very interesting, apart from the friezelike...

Museum in Addis Ababa

Addis Ababa Museum

Despite only being founded on Addis' centenary in 1986, the Addis Ababa Museum is the city’s scruffiest museum. That said, perusing candid portraits of the redoubtable Empress Taitu, rakish Lij Iyasu and the very...

Museum in Addis Ababa

Natural History Museum

Unless you've a particular interest in Ethiopia's animals and birdlife, this is more a case of rainy day tourism. Go eye to eye with a bloated leopard – sometimes the stuffers just don’t know when to stop...

Church in Addis Ababa

Entoto Maryam Church

The octagonal Entoto Maryam Church hosted Menelik’s coronation, but sadly for a church of such historical significance, the only time you can catch a glimpse of the interior is during Sunday Mass, and even then,...

Monument in Addis Ababa

Yekatit 12 Monument

Yekatit 12 Monument

Rising dramatically from the roundabout Siddist Kilo is this moving monument, dedicated to the thousands of innocent Ethiopians killed by the Italians as retribution for the attempt on Viceroy Graziani’s life on...

Museum in Addis Ababa

Entoto Maryam Museum

This rather dusty museum has the usual collection of royal garments, valuable coins, ceremonial drums, poor lighting and bored-looking attendants, but there are some highlights. These include the royal bed and...

Church in Addis Ababa

Kidane Mehret Church

The unremarkable new church on this site is far less interesting than the reconstructed original, complete with Aksumite architectural traces, alongside it.