Cultural Tour To The Historic Route Of Ethiopia
- Price from:
- 1454 USD /person
- Payment Types:
- Credit Card
- Travellers cheque
- Wire Transfer
- 10 days
- Location Start:
- Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
- Location Finish:
- Addis Ababa,Ethiopia
- We Speak:
- Japanese, German, Italian, Spanish, French, English
Last updated: 12/17/2008
Ethiopia, is truly a land of many wonders with undiluted unique culture and history. This tour provides a practical images of Ethiopiaâs 3000 years with a visit to Axum, Lalibela, Gondar, and so much
01: March 16, 2008: Arrive Addis Ababa
Arrive in Addis Ababa (ADD), Ethiopia. Welcome to Ethiopia! Upon arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, you will be welcomed and assisted by your tour guide and driver for the transfer to Ghion Hotel (4*). There will be a short drive to your hotel.
Addis Ababa, founded in 1886 by Menelik II, is situated at 2,500 meters (8000 ft) above sea level. It is the highest capital city in the world, after La Paz and Quito in South America. The city enjoys an excellent climate all year round, with an average temperature of 25C (77F). With multiethnic population of over 5 million, Addis Ababa is a pleasant city with wide avenues of jacarandas, interesting museums, and one of the largest open-air markets in Africa, known as the "Mercato".
Accommodation: Ghion Hotel-Addis Ababa. (Meals:-)
Day 02: 17 March : Addis Ababa- Bahirdar
After an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Addis Ababa Airport for your flight to Bahirdar departing at 7:20 AM.
After check in to the lake side Tana Hotel, drive 35 KM to visit the majestic Blue Nile Falls. 30 KM after it exits Lake Tana, the Blue Nile plunges over a 45m-high face to form one of the most spectacular waterfall in Africa. Walking to the fall through the beautiful river gorge on the ancient bridge from the 17th century, and meeting the local people at the small villages on the way to the fall is also a great experience.
In the afternoon, we will make boat cruise over Lake Tana to visit the ancient 14th century island monasteries of Lake Tana. The 37 islands of Lake Tana shelter twenty monasteries-surviving remnants of an old, contemplative tradition. Because of their isolation, they were used to store treasures and religious relics from all parts of the country. The Lake's monasteries are famous for their typical Ethiopian religious paintings, illuminated manuscripts, and other ancient church treasures. The monasteries that we are going to visit include Kibran Gebriel, Ura Kidane Mihret and Azua Mariam.
Accommodation: Tana Hotel-Bahirdar (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 03: 18 March : Bahirdar-Gondar
After breakfast, drive to Gondar through the beautiful countryside scenery to arrive at Gondar around lunchtime. After check in to Goha Hotel and having lunch there, we will start city tour of Gondar.
Gondar, founded by Emperor Fasiledas around 1635 is famous for its many medieval castles and the design and decoration of its churches-in particular, Debre Birhan Selassie represents a masterpiece of unique Ethiopian School of traditional art.
This afternoon, you will explore the ancient city and its famous sites including: The Royal Enclosure, a walled compound having 6 different castles built from 17th century by different kings who ruled in different times, the pool of King Fasilidas which still serves as a baptismal pool during Ethiopian Epiphany and we will also visit the famous Deberberhan Sillassie adorned with brilliant frescos from inside.
Accommodation: Goha Hotel-Gondar. (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 04: 19 March : Excursion to Simien Mountains-Gondar
After an early breakfast, we will drive to Sankaber for our full day excursion to the Simien Mountains National Park en-route visiting the âFelashaâ or the Black Jewish village. It is believed that the "Felashas" settled at this village during the time of King Minlik I, the son of Queen of Sheba and King Solomon.
Driving from Gondar up to Simien Mountains National Park, nothing prepares you for the spectacular scenery that awaits at the top of the massif. The rolling grassy plateau comes to an abrupt stop, and sheer cliffs plunge almost vertically for 1,000m (3280 ft) to the plains below. The massif itself has been sculpted by 30 million years of up thrust and erosion into a wonderland of jagged ridges, pinnacles and strangely cropped conical mountains, so that looking out over the heart-stopping precipice; you feel you might just be at the edge of the world. At Sankaber, the group will certainly have a chance to make relaxing trek and see troops of âbleeding heart baboon' the Endemic Gelada Baboon, in the most dramatic sceneries of the park including Ginbar River Falls and Wolkafit mountain chain. We will have picnic lunch at Sankaber while enjoying the stunning landscape.
Accommodation: Goha Hotel-Gondar (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 05: 20 March : Gondar-Lalibela
After breakfast, transfer to Gondar Airport for our 30 minutes flight to Lalibela departing at 9:00 A.M. After check in to Mount View Hotel, we will drive to the site where we find a concentration of some of Ethiopia's most famous rock-hewn churches, mostly referred by many as âthe living wonders of the worldâ These churches are, and they have been for at least 800 years, an active Christian shrine, the spiritual center of the country's religious life. The monolithic churches were carved out of 2,600-sq meter natural rock terrace in the 12-century AD by king Lalibela.
Bete Medhani Alem, the largest monolithic rock-hewn church in the world, measures 37.7 ft in height, covers an area of almost 2625 square ft and has walls that are up to six feet thick. A plain building supported by 36 pillars on the inside and another 36 pillars around the outside, Bete Medhani Alem was modeled on the original St. Mary Zion Church built by King Ezana in the 4th century at Axum.
The rock-hewn churches that we will visit today include: Bete Medhani Alem, Bete Mariam, Bete Meskel, Bete Denagil, Bete Golgotha Michael and Bete Giorgis
At the end of the tour, there will be Ethiopian traditional coffee ceremony for the group prepared at a local house. Those who can't face their day with out a cup of coffee may be surprised to know that in it's birthplace in Ethiopia's Kaffa region-from which it gets its name- the berries were originally only eaten, never roasted and ground for a drink. Only since the 13th century, coffee has been made a hot drink. Holding a coffee ceremony is a traditional Ethiopian way of welcoming a guest and giving the guest the best hospitality. It is probably one of the most celebrated Ethiopian traditions, and a lifestyle - in which most Ethiopians can identify themselves with.
Accommodation: Mount View Hotel-Lalibela (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 06: 21 March : Asheten Mariam-Lalibela
In the morning, mule ride, and walk to the top of Asheten Mariam Monastery, this is very famous for its 12-century monastery church and beautiful view at 10,298 ft above sea level. We will walk/mule ride through dramatic highland scenery and which eventually ends in a beautiful serene agricultural hamlet.
After having lunch and rest at the hotel, we will continue our journey into Ethiopia's long and marvelous history with a visit to other St. Lalibela's remarkable churches-their architecture and artistry must be seen to be believed. Ones we finished visiting the second group of churches we will walk to the village through the complex bewildering labyrinth of underground tunnels to the monastery were the monks and nuns live.
The rock-hewn churches that we will visit this afternoon include: Bete Gebriel, Bete Mercorios, Bete Amanuel, Bethlehem and Bete Aba Libanos.
Accommodation: Mount View Hotel-Lalibela (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 07: 22 March : Lalibela-Axum
After having an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Lalibela Airport for our flight to Axum departing at 9:50 A.M. After check in to Yeha Hotel, we will start to visit the ancient city of Axum. Our visit in Axum include: the Stele Square, Kaleba Tombs, the 4th centaury Christian inscription of King Ezana, Queen of Sheba's Palace, Archeological Museum, and Tsion Mariam Church where the original Ark of the Covenant is housed.
This is the birthplace of Ethiopian civilization, and by the first century Axum was a major trading center for exotic goods from Egypt, Rome, Nubia, Greece, Syria, and India. The Holy Ark of the Covenant was brought here before the destruction of the Temple, and Axum is reputed to be the second Jerusalem.
Accommodation: Yeha Hotel-Axum (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 08: 23 March : Axum-Yeha-Debre Damo
In the morning, drive out of town to the pre-christian temple of Yeha and to one of the most ancient Debre Damo monastery, en-route enjoying the stunning view of historical Adwa mountains and the dramatic country side scenery of Tigray
The rest of the day, walk around the ancient city of Axum.
Accommodation: Yeha Hotel-Axum (Meals: B/L/D)
Day 09: 24 March : Axum-Addis Ababa
After breakfast, transfer to Axum airport for the flight back to Addis Ababa. After check in to hotel, the rest of the day you will have city tour of Addis Ababa which includes: Ethnographic Musem, Merkato, Piassa and other parts of the city.
The Ethnographic Museum is very different to the National Museum, but equally absorbing, this museum exhibit, a varied array of artifacts and daily objects related to most ethnic groups in Ethiopia. We will continue our morning city tour with Merkato, the largest open-air market in Africa, other part of the city including Piassa and Churchill Avenue to make souvenirs shopping.
In the afternoon, visit The National Museum. The National Museum of Ethiopia: This is one of the best museums in quality and diversity of the exhibits. Archeological exhibits include the 3.5 million-year-old fossil of Lucy (or Dinkinesh â âthou art wonderful'- in the native language), a hominoid woman of the specious of Australopithecus Afarensis. The discovery of Lucy's fossil in 1974 forced a complete rethink of human genealogy, providing that our ancestors were walking 2.5 million years earlier than had been supposed. The National Museum also contains many wonderful artifacts dating back to pre-Axumite civilization.
In the evening, there will be a special Ethiopian farewell dinner party with traditional buffet and local drinks. There will also be a live cultural dance show of the different ethnic groups living in the country. There will not be any better way of ending a trip.
Accommodation: Ghion Hotel-Addis Ababa. (Meals: B/D)
Day 10: 25 March: Addis Ababa-Departure
In the morning, transfer to Addis Ababa Airport for the international flight back home. End of tour.
Note: - This tour begins and ends in Addis Ababa.
- In terms of accommodation: We are considering 4* hotel in Addis Ababa and the best available tourist standard hotel through out the tour.
- Inclusions -
- ï¼ All accommodations according to the tour program
- Exclusions -
- ï Tips for guides and driver
- Extras -
- Note: Accomodiation in Addis Ababa 4 star Ghion Hotel and in case of hotels out of Addis Ababa, Grand Holidays Ethiopia is considering the best available tourist standard hotels with private bath room and hot shower.
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