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$233.75 Cultural & Theme Tours

Fairytale-Like Tigray Mountains and Churches 3 Days Guided Trip

Visit Axum, the land of the Queen of Sheba, the resting place of the Ark of the Covenant and A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1980. Here you will see towering obelisks, ruined palaces, engraved tablets and other ancient artifacts dating back to Axum’s glory days. Visit the historically significant town of Adwa and its marvelous mountains, where the Emperor Menelik II inflicted the biggest defeat ever on a colonial army in Africa and saved Ethiopia from colonization About 11km east of Adwa, visit the monastery of Abba Garima, said to have been founded by one of the Nine Saints in the 6th century. The monastery is known for its collection of religious artifacts including three illuminated gospels from the 10th century Depending on your group type and availability of time, you can visit Yeha or Debra Damo. Yeha is famous for its huge and remarkable temple. According to the 19th-century German scholar Heinrich Müller, the temple is thought to date back to about seven or eight hundred years before the birth of Christ. The temple is believed to be the oldest standing building in Ethiopia. Beside the remarkable temple stands a church dedicated to Abba Aftse. Abba Aftse was one of the famous Nine Saints who came to Ethiopia in the 6th century from the eastern Roman Empire to teach the Gospel Visit Debre Damo monastery situated on a summit a few kilometers wide and occupied only by monks.  The Monastry is accessible by a rope, which is made of “plaited leather”, lowered from the cliffs, which visitors tie around their waist and are then pulled up by monks from the summit Drive through the City of Adigrat, where you will have lunch. Adigrat is a quietly attractive village of stone houses with sandstone cliffs to the east offering stunning views of the Gheralta plains Here you have the option of staying overnight at a hotel in Hawzen or Gheralta Lodge (relatively pricier) A very active day in the Gheralta belt where you will hike and climb to visit three key churches: Abuna Yemata Guh, Maryam Korkor and Daniel Korkor. Abuna Yemata Guh is accessible by trekking for about an hour culminating in a steep ascent up the side of the Gheralta massif. This steep ascent soon turns into a climb using foot holds and hand holds chipped into the sandstone rock by the passage of many hands and feet. The climb and the walk along very narrow ledges with sheer drops to the side is not one for the faint-hearted. The church itself can be reached by walking out on a ledge one meter wide and with a 200m drop to the left hand side. At the entrance there is a small cave and a wooden door built into the rock Of the three, Maryam Korkor is the most impressive architecturally. A huge, high ceiling is supported by 12 free standing pillars. Looking at it you could not help but wonder how the architect managed to carve so high from the ground Overnight stay at budget Hotel.

$2012 Multi-day & Extended Tours

Combined Tour Danakil and Northern Ethiopia

Day 01  Arrival - Addis Ababa
Optional visit to the Ethnographic Museum, a great introduction to Ethiopian culture and history. If time allows, visit the Mercato, one of Africa's largest outdoor markets, and Trinity Cathedral, resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie.
 Overnight HotelDay 02 Addis Ababa - Bahar Dar
Visit the marketplace in Bahar Dar. Take a boat tour on Lake Tana, the source of the Blue Nile, and tour ancient island monasteries.  
 Overnight Hotel Day 03  Drive Bahar Dar - Gondar
Tour the Royal Enclosure, a UNESCO World Heritage site featuring five castles built by a succession of Ethiopian Kings beginning in the early 17th century.  Overnight Hotel  Day 04  Fly Gondar - Lalibela
Tour the magnificent rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, a UNESCO World Heritage site. This group of eleven monolithic and semi-monolithic structures were carved directly into the stoneOvernight HotelDay 05  Lalibela
Take a morning hike with mules to Mount Asheton, with its 13th century rock-hewn monastery and great views of the townOvernight HotelDay 06 Fly Lalibela - Axum
Fly to Axum on Ethiopian Airlines. Tour the ancient stelae fields, standing for 2000 years. Visit the new and impressive Archeological Museum. Visit other tombs and archeological sites as time permits. 
 Overnight Hotel - AxumDay 07  Axum – Tigray ChurchDrive from Axum to Hausein via Adwa and Adigrat. Visit Abba Garima, Yeha,Debra Damo and the Gheralta plains. You can use the town as the base from which to visit the rock hewn churches at Gheralta. Overnight Hotel.Day 8 Tigray ChurchIn one day you will visit three churches; Abuna Yemata Guh; Maryam Korkor and Daniel KorkorOver Night Hotel Day 09 Tigray Church - Mekelle – AhmedelaMekelle Meet the support Vehicle and Drive to Ahmedela via Berhaile. Make camp, and see camel caravans passing against a backdrop of dramatic sunsets. Day 10  Lake Asale and Dalol ExcursionVisit Lake Asale and watch the salt workers as they cut bricks of salt from the lake bed. Day 11  Trek to Erta AlleDrive to Dodom. Trek 15 kilometers to the Erta Alle volcano lake, 613 meters above sea level.Day 12   Return to Mekele – Addis AbabaReturn trek to Dodom. Drive to Mekele. Fly back to Addis in the EveningEnd of Tour