Welcome to Arba Minch

Arba Minch (አርባ ምንጭ) is actually two cities in one. Its dual settlements of Shecha and Sikela, separated by 3km of virtual no-man’s land, have distinct personalities. Larger Sikela is more commercial and chaotic than her slightly more refined sibling up the hill. Shecha also offers fantastic views over the lakes.

Top experiences in Arba Minch

Amazing hotels and hostels

We've pre-picked the best hotels, hostels and bed and breakfasts to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

Arba Minch activities

$1450 Multi-day & Extended Tours

4-Days Arba Minch, Dorze Tribe, and Awasa Private Guided Tour

Your professional English speaking tour guide will meet you at your hotel at 7:00 AM for this 4 days private cultural, nature, historical, and wildlife tour of the Ethiopian Rift valley Lakes by drive with a comfortable Toyota Minivan. Some of the activities the tour offers are: -   • Learning the culture of the Dorze Tribe • Exploring the Nechisar National Park and Abidjatta-Shalla National Park  • Visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Steles of Tiya and Adadi Mariam Rock Church • Boat riding on Chamo Lake  ItineraryDay 1 – Addis Ababa – Steles of Tiya – Adadi Mariam Rock Church – Arba Minch Meet your guide at 7:00 AM at your hotel and start today’s drive of 460 km south to Arba Minch. The first stop is Adadi Mariam Rock Church (13th Century AD). Visit this unique church for half an hour to learn the background of the Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity and the church specifically. After 30 minutes more drive you’ll discover the grave site of the Steles of Tiya (UNESCO World Heritage Site). Here you will see about 40 stone grave markers decorated with carvings and erected in the 14th Century AD. After lunch at the town of Butajira, head to Arba Minch with a stop at the villages of the Oromo tribal people.Day 2 – Arba Minch – Dorze Tribe – Chamo Lake – Arba Minch After breakfast, drive for an hour to Chencha where you will experience the Dorze Tribe culture by visiting their huge bamboo huts, learning how the Dorze people prepare their bread and porridge from the root of Enset (False Banana Tree). After lunch at Arba Minch and enjoy a private boat ride on Chamo Lake for about an hour to explore the wildlife to see big African Crocodiles, families of hippos, and a number of lowland water birds. Late in the afternoon, get incredible views of the twin lakes of Lake Abaya and Lake Chamo, and the “Bridge of Heaven”.Day 3 – Arba Minch – Shashemene – Awasa Today, you’ll drive 275 km north to Awasa visiting the villages of the Alaba tribal. After lunch at Shashemene, learn the religious and historical background of Rastafarianism by visiting the Jamaican Rastafarian Community and their church.Before checking in to your hotel, attend and learn how Ethiopians enjoy their coffee with Coffee Ceremony. Walk by the shore of Lake Awasa to see the best sunset of the trip as it set behind Lake Awasa. Day 4 – Awasa – Fish Market of Awasa Lake – Abidjatta Shalla National Park – Addis AbabaUncover how life goes at the Fish Market of Awassa Lake by seeing how locals collect the fish catch by net, clean it by hand, and enjoy their breakfast of fresh catch fish. Then drive for 2 hours to the Abidjatta Shalla National Park to see gazelles, warthogs, ostriches, etc. Take time at a viewpoint to enjoy the superb views of Lake Abidjatta and Lake Shalla. On the way back to Addis Ababa, stop at the Rift Valley Lake of Ziway and one of the crater lakes of Bishoftu.

$2246.40 Multi-day & Extended Tours

21 Days Danakil Depression, North & South Ethiopia

Day 1: Addis-Mekelle Flight: Proceed driving to Afdera 220km, Danakil Depression can be said to 'begin' here. Overnight camping near the lake Afdera Day 2: Afdera-Erta Ale: visit the salt Mainers. Late drive to Dodom, Dodom takes about 3 hrs trekking. Trek to Ertale. Overnight Camping on the top of the mountain  Day 3: Erta Ale-HamadEla: visit north crater. Drive to HamadEla, picnic lunch on the way on shed of palm tree, reach Hamad Ela & Overnight Camping at Hamed Ela Day 4: HamadEla-Dallol–Mekelle: Drive to Asebo, mining site of salt. Then drive ahead to Dallol and visit the different landscapes formed by volcanic activity. Follow camel caravans and Drive back to Mekele. Overnight Hotel  Day 5: Mekelle–Hawzien: visit the rock churches, Abreha we Atsbeha, Mariam Korkor. Lunch at Gheralta Lodge & visit Abune yemata church. Overnight Hotel in Hawzien Day 6: Hawzien–Axum: drive to Axum. On the way we visit monastery of Debre Damo and Yeha Temple. Overnight Hotel Day 7: Axum–Debark: lunch at Tekeze River. Overnight Hotel Day 8: Debark–Sankaber–Gich: trek to Gich. Overnight Hotel Day 9: Debark–Gondar: visit Gondar. Overnight Hotel Day 10: Gondar–Baher Dar: visit Baher Dar city. Overnight Hotel Day 11: Baher Dar-Lalibela: Overnight Hotel Day 12: Visit the Holy Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela. Overnight Hotel Day 13: Lalibela–Addis–Omo vally: Fly Lalibela to Addis. Drive to Arba Minch. Overnight Hotel  Day 14: Arba Minch -Turmi: boat trip on Lake Chamo, Attend “Evangadi” Night dancing ceremony of Hamer’s. Overnight Hotel/Camping Day 15: Turmi: visit the Dassenech tribe, If Lucky attend, Bull-Jumping, traditional Hamer coming-of-age ceremony. Overnight Hotel/Camping Day 16: Turmi-Jinka:  Visit Dimeka local market. Overnight Hotel Day 17: Jinka: drive through the Mago National Park to a local village of the Mursi tribe, Visit South Omo Museum & Research Center. Optional: take a hike in surrounding hills to visit a local Ari village. Overnight Hotel Day 18: Jinka-Arba Minch: visit keyafer and konso on the way. Konso are known for their wooden statues, “wakas”, which are erected in honor of dead heroes as well as their innovative agricultural terracing. Overnight Hotel  Day 19: Arba Minch-Addis: On the way we have three options to visit: Tiya, Adadi Maryam & Melka Kunture. Overnight Hotel Day 20: Addis City tour & Overnight Hotel Day 21: Addis – Home: continue City tour in Addis and at night fly back home.

$2300 Multi-day & Extended Tours

7 days Omo Valley, Dorze and Arba Minch

Day 1 : Arba Minch to Dorze You will be met at Arba Minch airport and will take a beautiful drive up the mountains to Dorze village - home of Ethiopia's weavers.  You will enjoy a walking tour – visit the traditional bamboo houses, learn how to make the local bread from false banana tree, enjoy the market, watch women spinners and see the famous Dorze weavers. Stay overnight at Dorze Lodge, renowned for the spectacular views of the two Rift Valley lakes. After dinner, sit by the camp fire and enjoy the local singing and dancing.Day 2 : Dorze to Arba Minch (Lake Chamo and Nechisar National Park) After seeing sunrise, drive to Arba Minch and take a motor boat across Lake Chamo to visit Nechisar National Park. Take a gentle hike across the savannah and see zebras, gazelles and different types of animals. On the return boat ride, you will see giant crocodiles, hippos, local fishermen, pelicans and different types of birds. Spend the evening in Arba Minch. Stay overnight at Haile Resort.Day 3 : Arba Minch to Konso to Turmi Drive to Konso, a UNESCO world heritage site.  Your village walking tour will include Konso's renowned stone walled terraces and fortified settlements,  wooden statues (Waga), and stone steles (a complex system of marking the passing of leaders).  Drive to Turmi, a market town and home to the Hamer tribe.  Stay overnight at Turmi lodge.Day 4 : Karo tribe - Hamer market - Hamer village Spend the morning visiting the Karo tribe, famed for their body painting and elaborate headdresses - decorating with nature. Drive back to Turmi in time for the colourful afternoon Hamer market. If there is a coming of age ceremony, attend a bull jumping ceremony. Camp overnight with a BBQ in a Hamer village, where you will welcomed as a member of the family. Day 5 : Turmi - Omorate - Dassanech tribe - Jinka Drive to Omorate, on the Omo River, which is as deep as one can get into the Omo valley, without entering Kenya. Cross the river to visit Ethiopia's most southern tribe, Dassanech. Afterwards, drive to Jinka which is set in the hills above Mago National Park and capital of the Omo Valley.  You will visit the South-Omo Museum & Research Centre which hosts interesting exhibitions.  Stay overnight in an Eco lodge.Day 6 : Mursi and Ari tribes Drive through Mago National Park to visit the Mursi tribe, famed for their unique lip plates. After lunch, visit the Ari Tribe, renowned for their pottery, agriculture and beautiful wall paintings. Stay overnight in an Eco lodge.Day 7 : Jinka to Arba Minch Drive through the Rift Valley which covered in acacia woodland and studded with lakes, it feels unequivocally African and there many opportunities to take stunning photographs. You will arrive back in Arba Minch in time for the afternoon flight to Addis Ababa.

$1300 Multi-day & Extended Tours

3 days, Arba Minch and Dorze

Day 1 : Dorze You will be collected from your Arba Minch hotel or from the airport and drive to Dorze.  Enjoy our Dorze walking tour – along the way visit the traditional bamboo houses, spend time with a family learning how to make the local bread from false banana tree, enjoy the colourful market, watch the women spinning and see the famous Dorze weavers. Stay overnight at Dorze Lodge, renowned for the spectacular views of the two Rift Valley lakes. After dinner, sit by the camp fire and join in with the local village’s singing and dancing.Day 2 : Arba Minch - Lake Chamo and Nechisar National Park After breakfast, drive to Arba Minch and take a motor boat across Lake Chamo to visit Nechisar National Park. Take a gentle hike across the savannah and see zebras, gazelles and different types of animals. On the return boat ride, you will see giant crocodiles, hippos, local fishermen, pelicans and different types of birds. Spend the evening in Arba Minch. Stay overnight at Paradise Lodge or Haile Resort.Day 3 : Arba Minch - Forty Springs, Rainforest and walking tour After breakfast, drive to the Forty Springs and spend time in the rainforest, visit the springs, take a gentle hike to see bamboos, Columbus monkeys and waterhogs. Conclude your tour with a dip in the cool natural swimming pool. After lunch, visit Arba Minch market or enjoy our popular Arba Minch walking tour which concludes with a coffee ceremony.  We will take you to either your hotel or the airport.Add an extra day to your tour and visit one of the world heritage villages in Konso.

$3490 Multi-day & Extended Tours

11-Day Bird Watching Tour from Addis Ababa

Day 1: Addis Ababa - Debre Libanos Monastery Up on arrival in Addis Ababa, the driver and the guide will take you to your hotel for check in. After check-in, start driving to the tributary of the Blue Nile.Overnight stay at Afarensis International HotelDay 2: LanganoToday, you will have a drive to Langano, one of the Rift Valley lakes, surrounded by arid acacia savannah. Overnight at Bishangari Lodge, LanganoDay 3: Bale MountainsToday, you set off to Bale Mountain, an area of high altitude plateau , with volcanic crags and lakes, forests, alpine moor land, trout filled streams and a striking variety of fauna and flora. Over 60 species of mammals and 260 birds have been recorded here.Overnight at Wabe Shebelle Hotel, GobaDay 4: Bale MountainsToday’s drive will take you to the Afro-Alpine grasslands of the Sanetti plateau. It is cited as the world’s largest expanse of Afro–Alpine moorland, a habitat confined to altitudes of 3,500m to 4,500m.Overnight at Wabe Shebelle Hotel, GobaDay 5: YabelloThis journey will be via Awassa; it’s going to be long though detours are not paved and easily accessible.Overnight at Yabello Motel, YabelloDay 6: MegaA few kilometres drive will take you to Mega where you will see many species including Red-napped Bush-Shrikes, D’Arnaud’s Barbet and so much more.Overnight at Yabello Motel, YabelloDay 7: AwassaToday we drive to Lake Awassa and on arrival we search the grounds for Spotted Creeper, Senegal Coucal, Dusky Flycatcher and more.Overnight stay at Lewi resort, Awassa Day 8: Arba MinchAfter relaxed breakfast, you will have a drive to Arba Minch with a stop at a large local lake that holds Black Egret, White-headed Vulture, and African Cuckoo-Hawk.Overnight at Mora Heights Hotel, Arba MinchDay 9: Nechi Sar National ParkExcursion to Nechsar Park through Lake Chamo and Abaya's land of barrier called the ‘Bridge of God’. Overnight at Mora Heights Hotel, Arba MinchDay 10: LanganoToday you will start your return drive towards. Possibly, You will find Black, Goliath and other herons and egrets an many more. Overnight at Bishangari Lodge, LanganoDay 11: Addis AbabaYou will be arriving in Addis late afternoon. The tour ends at about 07:30pm.

$998 Cultural & Theme Tours

6 Days Omo Valley Tribes Tours From Addis Ababa

Day 01: Arrival - Sightseeing Addis (The new Flower)You will be met upon arrival and transferred to your hotel. Refresh and begin your sightseeing of Addis with a drive up to mount Entoto for a panoramic view of Addis. Descend down and drive to National museum where you will have a chance to spot the oldest hominids of ‘Lucy’ fossil. Visit and proceed to the Holy Trinity built during the WWII. T To wrap up you drive to merkato, the biggest market in East Africa.  Overnight in Addis.Day 02: Addis Ababa – Tiya-Arba MinchAfter having your early breakfast driving to the southern parts of Ethiopia on the way we will see the Tiya, classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, where we can see the northernmost example of a peculiar type of engraved, standing stelae which stretch across parts of southern Ethiopia.We will continue our driving to the town of Welayta for lunch stop then after lunch we will be driving to Arba Minch for overnight stay.Overnight Arba MinchDay 03:Arba Minch- Chencha Dorze VillagesAfter breakfast you will take a boat trip in Lake Lake Chamo, to visit the crocodile market, it is a local name for a place in Lake chamo that the crocodiles went out of the lake and chill, there is no buying or selling, also you will see hippos and different kinds of birds later driving to the  Dorzy village, This people set high up in the Gughe Mountains where we see the traditional Dorze beehive shaped huts recognized as one of the visually attractive structural houses by the UNESCO and later we will be back to Arba Minch for lunch then we will be driving to the town of Konso.Overnight KonsoDay 04:  Konso – TurmiAfter having your breakfast you will have a chance of seeing the Konso village, one of the UNESCO site in Ethiopia know by their terracing. One of the best types of coffee for the country is also from this village. Proceed to the Bana village. The men often have their hair dressed up with a colorful clay cap that is decorated with feathers. Then proceed to the Turmi where the Hamer people lives. Overnight in Turmi. Day 05: Turmi- Omorate (75kms 2hrs drive)After having your breakfast, you will have an excursion to Omorate to visit the Dassanech people ‘people of the Delta’, who lives on the northern shore of Lake Turkana. Visit and drive back to Turmi for lunch then drive to Jinka. Overnight in Jinka. Day 06: Drive Jinka – Mago – Jinka – Addis AbabaTake a day excursion to Mago National Park to visit the Mursi village. The Mursi are one of the exotic ethnic groups in Ethiopia. They live in very low huts made of straw leaves. The women like to wear terra cotta on their enormously stretched lower lips and ear lobes. Drive back to Jinka for lunch. \