Northern Ethiopia mosaic of cultures and incredible diversity

Start: 

Addis Ababa

Finish: 

Addis Ababa

Duration: 

13 Days Northern Ethiopia

Style: 

Basic

Accommodation : 

Overland

Code : 

HT 006

Group size: 

Min 2, Max 15

Price: 

1836USD Per Person

Include: 

Accommodation, Entrance fee, Transfers, Local Guide Not Included: Meal, Domestic Flights

Included activities

  • Lake Tana - Boat Cruise
  • Bahirdar - Blue Nile Falls
  • Simien Mountains National Park – short Hike
  • Gonder Fasil castel
  • rock hewen church of lalibela 
  • Axum stila
  • Yeha temple and Tigray church

Detail Itinerary

Day 1 Addis Abeba 

Visit the National Museum that exhibits numerous antiquates, historical relics, archaeological and pale-ontological objects including the 3.5 million year old skeleton of Lucy; one of the fine Ethiopian Orthodox Churches, St. George Cathedral that contains several interesting modern paintings and mosaics St. George Cathedral; Mercato - biggest open market of its kind in Africa and the commanding panoramic view point Mount Entoto which offers the stupendous view of the city

 

Day 2  . Bahir Dar  :  Drive to bahir dar  On the way visit the Portuguese bridge, said to have been the first bridge in Ethiopia.  Afterwards, you will pass through the spectacular Blue Nile Gorge.  The gorge extends nearly 400km and reaches depths up to 1500m.  Overnight in Bahir Dar (hotel).

Day 3  Bahir Dar is a pleasant city located on the shores of Lake Tana, the largest lake in Ethiopia. After checking into our hotel, exploring Lake Tana and its islands by boat. There are 37 islands on Lake Tana and 30 of them have churches and monasteries of considerable historical and cultural interest. We visit the monastery churches of Ura Kidane Mihiret, Azwa Mariam,. Ura Kidanemihiret is the best known of the monasteries and has an important collection of religious icons from the 16th to 18th centuries A.D. Azwa Mariam is known for its paintings and we also have time to visit the small museum.

Afternoon drive to the Blue Nile Falls, which is known locally as Tissisat (smoking water) falls: 100 m (328 ft) wide, the water plunges for 45 m (148 ft), giving rise to steam clouds and rainbows. We climb down to the base of the falls for an up-close look and then ascend the other side the round trip will take about 1hour walking. Than we cross the Blue Nile by boat to return to the point of departure. Overnight In hotel .

 Day 4  Gonder : Morning Drive to Gonder: Gondar City Sightseeing, Gondar was the first capital city of the Ethiopian Empire, which began in 1632 with the reign of Fasilidas. In Gondar, there are a dozen castles built by various emperors over the course of 236 years. The city seems more European than African and also has Islamic influences. In the morning visit Fasilidas' Palace, probably the most impressive of all the castles found in the area and the oldest one! We continue on to the bath of Fasiledes and Quskuam Church. In the afternoon we visitthe Church Of Debre Berham Selassie (Light of the Trinity). The interior of Debre Berham Selassie is decorated with beautiful frescos, cherubs and paintings. Debre Berham Selassie is rumored to once have been the proposed final resting-place of the Ark of the Covenant and we will visit the colorful market of Gondar.  Overnight in Hotel.

Day 5    Excursions to the panoramic lookout on the Simien Mountains.

After 3 km we left Gondar, we will have a over stop for visiting the village of Ethiopian felasha ( black Jewish) than we continues Simien Mountains, We head off today to the Simien Mountains (Simien National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site). The road passes over mountainous areas of wild beauty, drawing close to the Simien Massif (in Amharic, Simien means north). In the park, many of the mountain peaks exceed 4,000 m ( 13123 ft ); the highest is Ras Dejen, at 4,543 m ( 1905 ft ) above sea level. These mountains consist of volcanic masses that have been eroded away by centuries of rain. Today they have amethyst-colored peaks and deep gullies, which have been further deepened by rivers. O.N  Lodge or debark  Hotel .

Day 6    Drive to Axum  

After breakfast, depart north for Axum, enjoying spectacular views of the Simien Mountains.  After stopping for lunch in Adi Arkay, proceed driving through the dramatic Tekeze Valley, offering some of the best landscapes in the country.  Proceed to Axum, home of the ancient Axumite Empire, the Queen of Sheba, and the Ark of the Covenant.  Overnight in Axum (hotel).

Day 7 Axum, the legends narrated in the Kebre Nagast (‘Book of Kings’) recount how the city of Axum as early as the 10th century B.C was already the city in which the Queen of Sheba resided. It is recounted that the son of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon brought the Ark of the Covenant to Axum and it remains there to this day, preserved in a sanctuary.

Today will be a full day visiting the sites of Axum, including the famous obelisks (one that was recently erected after being returned from Italy) and the archeological museum, the Queen of Sheba’s Bath (which supplies water to Axum year-round), Ezana’s enscription, King Kaleb’s tomb, King Bazen’s tomb, and the Queen of Sheba’s Palace.  You can also visit the St. Mary of Zion church, where the Ark of the Covenant is kept.  Men only are allowed to enter the old church.  Unfortunately, no one (except one specially chosen guardian monk) is allowed to enter the chapel where the Ark is kept.  Overnight in Axum (hotel)..       Overnight in hotel

Day 8 Drive axum to Mekele  on the way visit Yeha temple and Tigray church

Day 9 Drive   lalibela    full Day drive to Chain Mountains

Day 10 Lalibela

This  Morning  is dedicated to visiting the first group of churches Lalibela  , contains 11 monolithic churches that were built in the 12th century and are carved out of the pink granite rock; they have been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Each church (Bet) has a unique architectural style; all are superbly carved and most of them are decorated with well-preserved paintings. The entire city may be described as a sculpture dedicated to the glory of God. and on the way back if time allows we will have an over stops in the souvenir shops and around the city center.

Bet Medihanialem is the largest, supported by 72 pillars and houses the 7kg (15 lbs) gold Lalibela Cross. We go through a tunnel from Bet Medihanialem to Bet Mariam, in which there is a pillar that it is said that Jesus Christ leaned against when he appeared in a vision to King Lalibela. Bet Mariam also contains fabulous carvings of various birds and animals. We also visit Bet Danaghel; a chapel built in honor of martyred nuns. Bet Golgotha and Bet Mikael are twin churches and many believe that a visit to Bet Golgotha alone can guarantee your place in heaven! The twin churches also contain many important religious items and some of the best examples of early religious art in the country. The last church we visit today is Bet Giyorgis, one of the more recent churches and best preserved.

In the afternoon  to visit The Eastern Rock Churches. Bet Amanuel is one of the most beautifully carved churches in Ethiopia in the Aksumite style. Bet Merkorios has a wonderful painting of The Three Wise Men, which dates back to the 15th century A.D. We also stop to see Bet Abba Libanos and Bet Gebrieal-Reafael, which might have once been the home of the royal family before becoming a church.

Day 11  After breakfast, visit the nearby monastery of Na’akuto La’ab, set on the side of a cliff.  After the visit, proceed driving to Kombolcha via Woldia.  On the way you will stop for a rest in Hayk where you can enjoy the views of this stunning lake, visit the local monastery (open for men only) and enjoy the birdlife.  Overnight in Kombolcha (hotel).

Day 12   Drive to Addis abeba

Day 13 Departure

Images: 

Tour Package: 

north
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