Discover Ethiopia

Classic, Addis Ababa to Addis Ababa

Image by G Adventures

Tour description provided by G Adventures

Tucked in between the Middle East and Africa, Ethiopia sits in the middle of these distinctive regions and yet takes on a cultural mosaic and aesthetic that’s tangibly distinct. On this 10-day tour you’ll see just what we mean with Christian churches hewn from solid rock; national park’s vivid, green peaks; and fascinating cities where luxury sports cars and assorted livestock hang out together in perfect harmony.

What’s included

  • Arrival transfer
  • Visit to Axum historical sites
  • Simien Mountains trek
  • Guided tour of Debre Berhan Selassie Church, Fasiladas's Bath, and historic castles in Gondar
  • Boat trip on Lake Tana
  • Excursion to Blue Nile Falls
  • Guided tour of the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela
  • Internal flights
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Highlights

  • Discover rock-hewn churches in lalibela and castles in gondar
  • Hike in the simien mountains national park and to see the blue nile falls
  • Visit two monasteries on lake tana on a boat ride

Itinerary

Day 1 Addis Ababa Addis Ababa, founded more than a century ago, means “new flower” in Amharic. At an elevation of 2,400m (7,874 ft), it's the third highest capital in the world and the climate is pleasantly cool. The city mixes past and present, the streets a mishmash of expensive cars, old Russian (Lada model) taxis, along with donkeys, sheep, and goats. Traditional mud houses stand not far from austere fascist architecture and private-sector banks. Additional Notes: Accommodation in Ethiopia is not to the standard of the west or other parts of Africa where tourism is more developed. Please see about accommodation section in trip details for more information. Included Activities: Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting Transport: Private Vehicle
Day 2 Addis Ababa/Axum (1B) Axum is Ethiopia's oldest and holiest city, and was once the home of the Queen of Sheba. Included Activities: Axum Historical Site Visit Transport: Plane (1.50 hour(s)) Private Vehicle
Day 3 Axum/Simien Mountains NP (1B) Travel, via the Lima Limo Valley, to Debark, our base for visiting Simien Mountains National Park. Relax at the scenic lodge with views of the stunning mountain ranges. Additional Notes: It is cold in the morning, during the day, in the evening, and at night when there is cloud cover or sleet. Ice often forms on water in the early mornings during the cold period of December through February, and afternoon spurts of hail frequent the beginning of the rains (April through May). Transport: Private Vehicle (9.00-10.00 hours, 280km)
Day 4 Simien Mountains NP/Gondar (1B) The scenic Simien Mountains are a good break from the busy cities. Rising high above an eroded landscape of deep gorges and valleys, they rank as one of the continent’s most beautiful (and unusual) mountain ranges. A number of peaks reach well over 4,000m (13,123.4 ft), and Ras Dashen, the highest peak in Ethiopia, is one of Africa’s highest mountains. Here, you can see some of Ethiopia's remarkable flora and fauna, including Gelada baboon, Walia ibex, and, if you're lucky, the Ethiopian wolf. The huge lammergeyer is also found soaring over the valleys here. Additional Notes: Today is a full day of hiking. Those not interested in hiking can spend the day relaxing at the lodge. Included Activities: Simien Mountains Trek Transport: Hiking Private Vehicle (4.00-5.00 hours, 170km)
Day 5 Gondar Area (1B) Enjoy a cultural and nature excursion in a rural Amhara community, then return to Gondar in time for lunch. In the afternoon visit the Debre Birhan Silassie Church. Included Activities: Amhara Culture & Nature Excursion Debre Berhan Selassie Church Tour Transport: Private Vehicle (0.50 hour(s), 20km)
Day 6 Gondar/Bahir Dar (1B) Continue exploring Gondar in the morning, then head to Bahir Dar. Included Activities: Fasiladas Castle and Bath Visit Transport: Private Vehicle (3.00-4.00 hours, 185km)
Day 7 Bahir Dar (1B) The scenic Blue Nile Falls are known as Tis Issat, which means “smoking water.” Included Activities: Lake Tana Boat Trip (Monastery Visit) Blue Nile Falls Hiking Excursion
Day 8 Bahir Dar/Lalibela (1B) Lalibela is a good place to taste the local beverage, tej (honey wine) accompanied by local traditional song and dance. Transport: Private Vehicle (6.00-7.00 hours, 315km)
Day 9 Lalibela (1B) In the morning, opt for a hike to Asheton Maryam, for panoramic views of the town and countryside. Included Activities: Lalibela Churches Tour Transport: Private Vehicle
Day 10 Lalibela/Addis Ababa (1B) Book onward travel after 5pm. Included Activities: Departure Day Transport: Plane (1.00-2.00 hours)
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