TBC excl. flight
- The famous rock cut churches of Lalibela
- The soaring stelae of Axum
- Spectacular scenery, wildlife and an unspoilt culture
This journey tours the cultural highlights of northern Ethiopia where, with the exception of Harrar, the heritage of the Orthodox church is pervasive. Visit no fewer than five UNESCO World Heritage sites set in the magnificent scenery of this ancient land. Tour the fabulous rock cut Orthodox churches at Lalibela, the impressive stelae at Axum and Ethiopia’s Simien Mountains.
Our sister company Steppes Discovery is offering a wildlife tour with Philip Briggs of Bradt Travel Guides to Ethiopia in November 2013, call 01285 643333 or click here for further details.
Day 1 London/ Addis Ababa – Fly overnight.
Day 2 Addis Ababa - City tour including Mount Entoto and the churches of Bet Maryam and Archangel Raguel.
Day 3 Addis - Explore the National Archaeological Museum, the Institute of Ethiopian Studies, Trinity Church, housing the tomb of Emperor Haile Selassie, and Emperor Menelik’s Mausoleum.
Day 4 Axum, Yeha – Fly to Axum, the ancient seat of an empire that extended to Arabia. Explore the stelae park, burial place of 3rd and 4th century kings, the Maryam Tsion Cathedral, the ruins at Dungur, the new museum and the hilltop tombs of King Kaleb and King Gabra Masqal.
Day 5 Axum – Visit Yeha, Ethiopia’s first city settlement dating back 2,800 years.
Day 6 Simien Mountains – Descend over 4,000 feet crossing the Takkezze Gorge, then climb through dramatic scenery up the Wolkayt Escarpment into the Simien Mountains, home to the charismatic gelada baboons.
Day 7 Gondar - Drive along the escarpment to view the stupendous cliffs and waterfalls of the Geech Abyss before crossing the plateau to Gondar.
Day 8 Gondar, Bahir Dar – Morning exploring Gondor’s castles and the churches of Debra Berhan Sellassie with their superb early 19th century paintings. Afternoon drive to Bahir Dar skirting round Lake Tana, Ethiopia’s largest lake.
Day 9 Bahir Dar – Morning boat trip on Lake Tana with a visit to 14th century Ura Kidane Mihret monastery and Azwa Mariam church. Afternoon at leisure.
Day 10 Lalibela – Fly to Lalibela for its famous 13th century rock-hewn churches. Explore the eastern complex of these unique churches, including the oldest examples.
Day 11 Lalibela – Travel north to the remarkably preserved church of Ymrahanna Kristos, built in Axumite style within a huge cave. Return to Lalibela to the northern church complex which includes the finest, most elaborate churches, and the burial place of King Lalibela himself.
Day 12 Addis/ Harrar - Fly via Addis to Dire Dawa and continue on to the Islamic hilltop city of Harrar.
Day 13 Harrar - Tour the walled city, considered by UNESCO to be the fourth holy city of Islam with its 82 mosques.
Day 14 Awash – Travel to scenic Awash National Park, with afternoon game drive.
Day 15 Awash, Addis - Drive back to Addis with rest of day at leisure.
Day 16 Addis/ London – Return flight to London.
To be confirmed shortly.
If you like this tour but our specific tour dates don't suit you we can arrange the same itinerary or similar on a tailor-made basis, please contact us to discuss.