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Ethiopia

Mursi man, Omo Valley, Ethiopia

Photo by B.Stirton

 

A fascinating Land of Contrasts and Extremes

Ethiopia, oldest independent African country, with a fascinating blend of history, culture and people. Discover modern cities and ancient tribal cultures, explore remote and wild places such as the jagged Simien Mountains and the Omo Valley with ancient tribes and authentic markets.

Ethiopia is old beyond imagination. As Abyssinia, its culture and traditions date back over 3,000 years. And far earlier than that lived “Lucy”, whose remains were found in a far corner of this country of mystery and contrasts. More…

A sample of our Ethiopia Experiences:

Enquire about more options here

TRΛVELBOECKER TΛILOR-MΛDE
– combing your personal preference with our expertise.
We create unique & authentic experiences
designed to suit your travel budget and desired style of travel.

Contact Vancouver Travel Expert
Christine Boecker

to plan your Ethiopian Experience

 

Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

EthiopiaMap

Area: 1,127,000 km²
Capital: Addis Ababa
Currency: Ethiopian Birr
Climate: Ethiopia is pleasant all year round, with temperatures in Addis Ababa averaging around 20°C (68°F) no matter what season it is. The rainy season is from mid-June to the end of August.
Population: 82 million, making it the third most populated country in Africa.
• People: Oromo (35%), Amhara and Tigrean (33%), Sidamo (4%), Shankella (6%), Somali (6%), Afar (4%), Gurage (2%)
Official language: : Amharic (official), Tigrinya, Orominga, Guaraginga, Somali, Arabic, English
Time: GMT +3
Climate: Ethiopia is pleasant all year round, with temperatures in Addis Ababa averaging around 20°C (68°F) no matter what season it is.
• Best Time to travel:
Ethiopia has two main seasons, the dry season which lasts from mid-September to the end of May, and the rainy season which goes from June to August, with an average temperature of 25° C.
The best time to visit Ethiopia is from September to May.
More about Ethiopia’s history, people and food…

Contact Vancouver Travel Expert
Christine Boecker

to plan your Ethiopian Experience

TOP

Ethiopia, Karo Girl

Historical Highlights

13 Day Journey through the oldest independent country of Africa,
accompanied by a Guest Lecturer
(EX-SHE)

From Addis Ababa, head north to Bahar Dar and the source of the Blue Nile. Discover historical islands, used as places of refuge for Christian emperors. Small well-protected churches still contain religious treasures, including crowns and chalices.

Visit 17th century castles in the lively market town of Gondar before heading north to the sacred city of Axum, capital of a once great civilisation and famed for its giant stelae (obelisks), palaces and churches as well as being the claimed final resting place of the Ark of the Covenant.

Turning east we reach the site of Yeha, probably dating back almost 3,000 years and visit the town of Adwa, where the Ethiopians became the first African nation to defeat a colonial power in 1896. Since then, Ethiopia has been a symbol of African independence, free from European control.

Explore remote rock-hewn churches of Tigray, architectural gems created prior to the 16th century and unknown to the outside world until the 1960s. In Lalibela discover Tigray’s more famous counterparts and one of the world’s most remarkable archaeological sites. Buildings here are hewn from granite leaving rock-cut churches isolated from the surrounding strata, yet still part of it.

Discover several of these 800 year-old works of art before ending your journey with a mule trek to a remote mountain church affording stunning views over Lalibela and the surrounding peaks.

rating4  Comfort

rating1  Active

Tour highlights:

Addis Ababa – guided orientation tour
Bahar Dar – Tississat Falls on the Blue Nile
Lake Tana – visit isolated churches by boat
Gondar – Fasilidas Castles & Debre Berhan Church
Simien Mountains – visit Falasha village
Axum & Yeha – Stone Obelisks and pagan temple
Tigray & Lalibela – Rock-hewn churches and mule trek

Comment: Come prepared for poor roads and simple accommodation, although the warm welcome more than compensates for any discomfort. Short, easy walks around archaeological sites with more demanding access to some churches.

Click here to request detailed itinerary

Tour Dates: March, September and October 2018

Tour Cost: from $3,650 per person sharing twin
Single supplement from $440
Group Size: 10 – 16 passengers
Type of Accommodation: standard & basic Hotels
Vehicles: bus, boat, flight
Meals: 12 breakfasts

Contact Vancouver Travel Expert
Christine Boecker

to plan your Ethiopian Experience

TOP

Ethiopian Camel Woman

Blue Nile & Lalibela

14 Day Immersion into Medieval History & Ancient Culture (Ex-ET)

Begin in Dire Dawa and the medieval, walled town of Harar. The people here are quite different from other parts of Ethiopia. Walk around the old town with Moorish gateways, ancient walls, narrow alleyways and jostling crowds. Enjoy one of the most colourful markets in Ethiopia, before returning to Addis via the stunning scenery and wildlife of Awash National Park.

From Addis Ababa, head north to Bahar Dar and the source of the Blue Nile. Discover historical islands, used as places of refuge for Christian emperors. Visit 17th century castles in the lively market town of Gondar before continuing on to the high plateau of the Simien Mountain range – home to the Gelada baboon and rare Simien fox. The mountains are criss-crossed with tracks worn out by the local people travelling from village to village or moving their animals to fresh pastures. The combination of these tracks and the spectacular scenery make for excellent walking.

Head north to the sacred city of Axum, capital of a once great civilisation and famed for its giant stelae (obelisks), palaces and churches as well as being the claimed final resting place of the Ark of the Covenant.

In Lalibela discover one of the world’s most remarkable archaeological sites. Buildings here are hewn from granite leaving rock-cut churches isolated from the surrounding strata, yet still part of it. Discover several of these 800 year-old works of art before ending your journey with a mule trek to a remote mountain church affording stunning views over Lalibela and the surrounding peaks.

rating3  Comfort

rating2  Active

Tour highlights:

Harar – Medieval walled city
Addis Ababa – guided orientation tour
Bahar Dar – Tississat Falls on the Blue Nile
Lake Tana – visit isolated churches by boat
Gondar – Fasilidas Castles & Debre Berhan Church
Simien Mountains – walking in stunning scenery
Axum – Stone Obelisks
Lalibela – Rock-hewn churches and mule trek

Comment: Come prepared for poor roads and some simple accommodation. Included walks around sites are easy with some optional longer walks in the mountains.

Click here to request detailed itinerary

Tour Dates: Sundays to December 2017
Tour Cost: from $3,450 per person sharing twin
Single supplement from $480
Group Size: 10 – 16 passengers
Type of Accommodation: standard & basic Hotels
Vehicles: flights, bus, boat
Meals: 13 breakfasts

Contact Vancouver Travel Expert
Christine Boecker

to plan your Ethiopian Experience

 TOP

GondarCastle

More about Ethiopia:

Topographic profile
From the north and running down the center are the Abyssinian highlands. To the west the land drops off to the grasslands of Sudan and to the east are the deserts of the Afar and the Red Sea. The land south of Addis Ababa is dominated by the Rift Valley Lakes.
The main rivers are the Blue Nile, the Tekezze (which joins the Nile in Sudan) the Awash, the Wabe Shebelle, the Omo, and Baro and Birbir.

History & Background: Ethiopia is the oldest independent country in Sub Saharan Africa. The earliest evidence of Ethiopian history was in around 1000BC when the Queen of Sheba visited King Solomon. Unique among African countries, the Ethiopian monarchy maintained its freedom from colonial rule throughout the twentieth century, with the exception of the Italian occupation of 1936 – 1941 . In 1974 a pro- Soviet Marxist-Leninist military junta , the Derg , deposed Emperor Haile Selassie , who had ruled since 1930 , and established a one-party socialist state. The ensuing regime suffered several bloody coups , uprisings, wide-scale drought , and massive refugee problem. It was eventually defeated in 1991 by a coalition of rebel forces under the name Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). In 1994 a constitution was adopted leading to Ethiopia’s first multiparty elections in the following year.

People
Ethiopia’s population is highly diverse. Most of its people speak a Semitic or Cushitic language. The Oromo, Amhara, and Tigreans make up more than two-thirds of the population, but there are more than 77 different ethnic groups with their own distinct languages within Ethiopia.

Clothing
Pack light clothes for the daytime and jacket or sweater for the evenings, and a good pair of walking shoes even if you are not going trekking – pathways around historic sites are usually uneven and stony.
A cultural note:
Ethiopians are generally modest dressers and visitors should be sensitive about going under-dressed into places of worship. Shoes must always be removed before entering churches and mosques. For getting around sites like Lalibela with its many churches, airline socks are very useful.

Food
The Ethiopian national dish consists of injera, a flat, circular pancake made of fermented dough on top of which are served different kinds of cooked meats, vegetables and pulses.
The sauces are generally spiced with berbere, a blend of herbs and spices (including hot peppers) which gives Ethiopian food its characteristic taste.
Vegetarians should try “fasting food” (for devout Ethiopian Orthodox Christians fast days make up nearly half the year), a colorful spread of Salads, vegetables and pulses, devoid of all meat and animal products.
One eats national dishes with right hand (water for washing is usually brought to the table before the food is served), tearing off pieces of injera to pick up the “toppings”.

Photography
As a matter of courtesy, permission should be sought before photographing individuals and in many parts of the country, particularly among the Afar and among the ethnic groups living by the Omo River, people will demand a fee. In some sites (Blue Nile falls for example) there is a charge for video photography.

Contact Vancouver Travel Expert
Christine Boecker

to plan your Ethiopian Experience

TOP

TRΛVELBOECKER TΛILOR-MΛDE
– combing your personal preference with our expertise.
We create unique & authentic experiences
designed to suit your travel budget and desired style of travel.

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