Combined Historic and tribal expedition

Addis Ababa, Bahirdar, Aksum, Lalibela to Jinka

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Tour Duration: 16 days (with a flight from Addis Ababa to Bahirdar, Aksum to Lalibela, Lalibela to Addis Ababa, Jinka to Addis Ababa)

Tour Plan

Arrive in Addis Ababa and transfer to your hotel. City tour in Addis national museum (home of Lucy, hominid skeleton dating back 3.2 million years) ethnographic museum, the panoramic view point of Addis and Entoto museum. Finally drive to Merkato which is one of the biggest markets in Africa.

Overnight: hotel

In the morning fly to Bahir Dar. Take a boat trip on Lake Tana to explore the monasteries hidden on the shores and islands of Lake Tana. In the afternoon depart out of town to the Blue Nile Falls locally known as (Tis Isat water fall) which means the smoking water and easy hike on the surroundings. And then drive back to the town of Bahir Dar and visit Bezawit Palace on the Hill. It was the former palace of the late emperor Ethiopia Haile Selassie.

Overnight: hotel/resort

In the morning, drive Bahir Dar north to Gondar. Visit the sites of Gondar, including the Royal Enclosure, with six castles and several other buildings. Additionally, visit Fasilidas’s Pool, still used for Timket celebrations still today and Debre Birhan Selassie church with the most famous religious mural paintings in Ethiopia.

Overnight: hotel/resort/lodge

Early in the morning, depart for the stunning Simien Mountains National Park. The jagged mountains and deep valleys lend spectacular views to these mountains, home to many of the endemic animal species of Ethiopia including the Chelada baboon (guaranteed to be seen) as well as the rare Walia ibex and Ethiopian wolf. Afternoon, trek in the most dramatic sceneries of the park along the escarpment and the mountain chains.

Overnight: hotel/lodge

Full day in the Simien mountains. After breakfast we will start our expedition to the majestic Mountains, breathtaking views, hidden waterfalls, and mysterious valleys-here are the richness of the mountains of Simien. Here you can meet many species of animals, the most famous being the endemic Galada Baboon (the bleeding-heart baboon). Trek to Jinbar waterfall which forms a 500-meter fall and enjoy the bird life hovering above your head.

Overnight: hotel/lodge

After breakfast, continue to Aksum, enjoying the final views of the Simien Mountains. After stopping for coffee on the way, proceed driving through the Tekeze Valley to Aksum, Ethiopia’s most ancient city and former capital of the great Aksumite kingdom, the home Queen of Sheba, and the Ark of the Covenant. You’ll have time to walk around the old town.

Overnight: Hotel

Full-day visit to the sites of Aksum including the famous obelisks, the Queen of Sheba’s palace, and King Bazen’s tomb. You will also visit the St. Mary of Zion church, according to local Ethiopian tradition. Here is where the Ark of the Covenant is kept, only men are allowed to enter the old church. No one except chosen guardian monk is allowed to enter the chapel where the Ark is kept.

Overnight: Hotel

Take a flight to Lalibela, the most famous of all of the Ethiopian historical sites. After lunch, begin to explore the 11 rock-hewn churches of the remarkable king Lalibela, visiting the Northwestern Cluster of churches - Bete Medhane Alem, Bete Maryam, Bete Meskel, Bete Danaghel, Bet Mikael & Bet Golgotha.

Overnight: hotel/lodge

After breakfast, a trip to visit the church of Yimrehane Kirstos. The most popular of the churches outside of Lalibela, this church is built in the late-Axumite style, with layers of wood and granite, set in the entrance to a large cavern. After the visit, return back Lalibela and lunch.

In the afternoon, visit the Southeastern Cluster of churches – Bete Gabriel-Rufael, Bete Merkorios, Bete Amanuel, and Bete Abba Libanos. Finally, visit the most famous of all the churches – Bet Giyorgis, a huge monolithic church in the shape of a cross constructed in honor of St. George, the patron saint of Ethiopia.

Overnight: hotel/lodge

After breakfast transfer to Lalibela airport and fly back to Addis. Upon arrival Depart south from Addis via the Great Rift Valley, stopping on the way at Lake Ziway to visit the bountiful birdlife on the shores of the lake. Continue your journey to Hawassa to overnight

Overnight: hotel/lodge

In the morning, visit the fish market on Lake Awassa, and then continue driving to Arba Minch. On the way, ascend into the Guge Mountains to visit the Dorze people, who are known for their tall elephant face-like houses and their fine cotton weaving. Market days in Dorze village are Mondays and Thursdays and in Chencha on Tuesdays and Saturdays. After the visit, continue to Arba Minch for overnight

Overnight: hotel/lodge

After breakfast, In the morning take a boat trip on Lake Chamo to visit the crocodile market and hippopotamus. After the visit, drive to Turmi via Konso. Stop in Konso and visit one of the villages. Note, Konso is the late recorded UNESCO world heritage site of Ethiopia. The people are known for the terraces that they make and the strong community who work hard and protect the land from erosion and have a special kind of social organization, interesting handicrafts, and a special architecture. Continue driving Turmi.

Overnight: your hotel/lodge

Morning, drive to Omorate and cross the Omo River by local boat to visit the Dasennech tribe (also known as the Galeb tribe). Return to Turmi and in the afternoon, visit Hamer village. As the harvest was good this year, there is a chance to visit a bull jumping ceremony. At night, see the traditional night dancing of the Hamer people, known as Evangadi.

Overnight: your hotel/lodge

After the visit drive to Karo. The Karo tribe is very famous for their elaborate body decoration. They use many colors made from different types of soils. After your visit drive to Dimeka for the local market visit. This is one of the colorful markets in the South Omo and is visited by neighborhood Hamer, Benna, and Tsemai tribes. Afterward, continue driving to Jinka.

Overnight: your hotel/lodge

On this day you will drive to one of Ethiopia’s national parks called Mago to see the Mursi tribe. The women of Mursi are known for wearing clay-made lip plates on the lower part of their lips. The bigger lip plate she had made her more beautiful and acceptable to the community. Afternoon visits the museum and walks through the villages of the Ari people.

Overnight: your hotel/lodge

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Addis Ababa. In the afternoon visit Merkato, one of the largest open markets in Africa, and walk around the old town.

In the evening, farewell party with a cultural dinner and traditional special buffet and local drinks to experience Ethiopia’s cultural meals and drinks. After farewell dinner, transfer to your hotel

End of tour

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