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This is a tour designed to unveil Ethiopia’s natural and historical sites to the North. Ethiopia’s history goes over 3000 years and in all those years each generation has been placing their own finger print in most major cities of Ethiopia. The historical attractions on the tour covers: Addis Ababa, being home for United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the African Union (AU), it is referred to as the “capital of Africa”; the regional capital of Amhara- “Bahir dar”, the UNSECO registered natural Bio-Sphere “Lake Tana” and the “Blue Nile Falls”;   Gondar the Camelot of Africa, with its magnificent castles and palaces;  Lalibela known as one of the wonders of the world with its remarkable rock-hewn churches, the ancient town of Axum, with its amazing carved obelisks and ancient civilization, including the original Ark of the Covenant made by the hands of Moses and the cliff tops of 4th century Tigray rock hewn churches.

 

Al Negash, one of the oldest Islamic settlement outside of Arbian Peninsula.

Danakil Depression, also called the Afar Depression, is a geological depression in the Horn of Africa, where it overlaps Eritrea, the Afar Region in Ethiopia, and Djibouti. The tour of the Danakil Depression will feature Dallol the lunar type landscape where geology and hydrology create a unique activity and Erta-Ale which means “Smoking Mountain” in the local Afar language and its southern most pit is known locally as “the gateway to Hell”.

In this route the Axum stales, the Lalibela churches, the castles of Gondar and Lake Tana (natural Bio-Sphere) are registered by UNESCO

  • Very easy tour, built for everyone without Age limit or Gender issues however physical fitness is mandatory at Danakil as it features small trekking routes lasting no more than 4 hours.
  • Most of the sites in this tour are religious, natural and cultural legacies, so it is advised to follow the instruction of your escort and local guide and remain respectful to the local beliefs at all destinations for example:

     

  • For the historic part prepare a shawl or a ‘netela’ (as locals call it), when visiting churches.
  • Taking photographs in the cultural villages and of the different tribes will be subject to a mandatory photography fee.
  • As churches have separate entrance for male and female, ask the guide for proper direction before exploring each.

 

  • Be responsible traveler for the environment, for example do not litter, use available garbage disposals to dump your personal waste etc.

Itineraries

Day 1: ADDIS ABABA

Date : August 17, 2020

Transport: Surface and Air

Guests will arrive in Addis Ababa, where they will be welcomed and transferred to their hotel by a Pagumen tour and travel representative. Depending on arrival time a City tour of Addis Ababa will be arranged. Addis Ababa being the center of the country’s Economic, social and political activity has a lot of traditional and modern city life to offer Pagumen guests. On this day the city tour of Addis Ababa will cover the National museum: home for the oldest and famous hominid fossil of ‘Lucy’, Mount Entoto for the scenic view of Addis Ababa the Trinity cathedral church. Also known in Amharic as Kidist Selassie, the Trinity Church is the highest ranking Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Cathedral in Addis Ababa. It was built to commemorate Ethiopia's liberation from Italian occupation and is an important place of worship and ceremonial events in Addis Ababa, and Merkato, (also the city center and recognized as one of East Africa’s largest and vibrant market places).

Day 2

Drive to Bahir dar

Drive north of Addis to the beautiful Lake city of Bahirdar crossing sululta plain and the Blue Nile gorge which is the Grand Canyon of Africa. Adjacent to the world longest river Blue Nile and Laka Tana the largest lake in Ethiopia; being a seat for the Amhara regional state Bahirdar is also a center for relaxing and entertainment. Overnight Bahirdar

Day 3

BAHIRDAR

After an early breakfast, guests will directly be driven to the small village of Tis Isat to visit the spectacular Tis Abay (the water that smokes) or Blue Nile Falls of which specially from August till November, after the rainy season, you can expect an impressive sight. The Abay is the local name for the Ghion River, a name given to one of the four rivers that flow around the garden of Eden (Genesis 2:13). It is the biblical name given to the river Nile which flows from the “Land of Origins”, Ethiopia to the Mediterranean Sea. Here, guests will be able to view the 17th century bridge over the falls, birdwatch and explore different paths. After a breathtaking stay by the waterfall, drive back to Bahirdar for lunch. In the afternoon, guests will be escorted to Lake Tana for a memorizing boat ride to the medieval island monasteries on the lake such as: Ura Kidane Mehiret & Azuwa Mariam Monasteries. Here, guests can capture the aged essence of the beautiful mural paintings, religious books & sacred treasures found in the monasteries. Overnight Bahir dar

Day 4

Bahir dar - Gondar

Drive about 180 KM to the legendary town of Gondar known for its Magnificent Royal Castles. On this scenic route through the outstanding highland landscape, guests will get an insight into the culture and lifestyle of the people who live in the country side. On arrival check –into the hotel and guests will start their visit at the castles of Gondar compound (UNESCO World heritage site); King Fasiledes Bath and the Debre Birhan Selassie church, (known worldwide for its traditional angle face church paintings on its ceilings). Overnight Gondar

Day 5

Drive to Axum

After an early breakfast drive north of Gondar through the chains of the Simien Mountains and crossing Tekeze River to the ancient town of Axum. Overnight Gondar

Day 6

City tour of Axum

Once the center of a great empire and ancient world civilization, Axum is known to represent more than 3000 years of history and for being home to the original Ark of the Covenant made by the hands of Moses. The sightseeing of this ancient city includes St. Mary’s Church, the sanctuary Chapel which is the repository for the ‘Ark of the covenant’, the coronation yard, the Stelae/Obelisks Park, Tombs of Kaleb and his son Gebremeskel’s, King Ezana’s inscriptions and the ruins of Queen of Sheba’s palace. Overnight Axum

Day 7

Axum – Yeha -Tigary Rock Hewn Churches- Al-Negash

After an early breakfast, drive from Axum to visit Tigray’s Rock hewn churches. En route, sight the battle field of Adwa, the Land mark of Africa’s victory over modern colonial power and the Yeha temple built between 500- 400 B.C which is one the oldest Jewish synagogues in Ethiopia, wukro Cherkos church the 4th c semi monolithic rock hewn church and Al Negash one of the oldest Islamic settlement outside of Arbian Peninsula. Late afternoon will be in Mekele. Overnight Mekele

Day 8

: Mekele- Hamed Ela

Early in the morning fly to Mekele then drive to Hamed Ela via the small town of Berhale where guests & trip crew will make a pit spot to finalize mandatory entrance procedures. En route to Hamed Ela, Late afternoon head to the camp site at Hamed Ela. Overnight Hamed Ela

Day 9

Dallol

Drive to Dallol recorded as the hottest location on the earth. Dallol is part of the great Rift system which stretches from Syria to Mozambique. It is also the deepest place on the surface of the earth which is 120 meters under the surface. While driving through, guests will cross over the salt road and take in the sights of traditional salt extraction, the colorful sulfur lake and other amazing Dallol lunar like geologies and colours along the depression. After enjoying the view guests will drive back to Hamedila before the heat of the sun gets much hotter. Overnight Hamed Ela

Day 10

Erta-Ale: The Living Volcano

Early in the morning, guests will take the gurgling drive via the salt and desert covered landscape towards the living volcano “Erta-Ale”. Lunch will be arranged at the Afar Chief elder’s house whose name is ‘Gilisa’. Erta-Ale is a seasonal tour advised to visit only during the months of September to 1st week of April as temperatures could rise from 45 to 57 degrees off season. After our informative luncheon with the elders, head to the Campsite where we will leave our vehicles, and relax while waiting for the sun to cool down. At sunset, guests will enjoy a 3-4hours trek to visit the live Volcano to witness in the distance the natural waves of the fire lake which is a volcanic lake that shimmers in the night. Overnight will be camping on top of mount Erta – ale

Day 11

Erta-Ale- Mekele

Early the next morning, guests will descend Mount Erta-Ale, returning to the base camp for a well-deserved breakfast. After a brief rest, drive to Mekele via the small towns of Habala and Erepti. Overnight Mekele

Day 12

Drive Mekele to Lalibela

After having your breakfast leave Mekelle and drive through the Chain Mountains of Ambalage to Lalibela. On the way you will enjoy the landscape. Proceed to Lalibela. Overnight Lalibela

Day 13

Tour Lalibela:

The small town of Lalibela in Ethiopia is home to one of the world's most astounding sacred This town is home to one of the world's most astounding sacred sites: the eleven rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, each carved entirely out of a single block of granite with its roof at ground level. After checking in to the hotel, guests will go on a guided tour to visit the famous rock hewn churches including the legendary St. George church, the trenches symbolic of the river of Jordan and the “tomb of Adam”. Overnight Lalibela

Day 14

Drive to Dessie/ Kombolcha

After a relaxed breakfast, you will drive to Dessie/ Kombolcha. On the way, you will see small towns of South Wollo called Hyke which named by Lake Logo famed its island monastery. The monastery has museum, on a long peninsula 4km northeast of town, dates from the mid-13th century and was founded by Abba Iyasus Moa. Between the 13th and 15th centuries it was among Ethiopia’s most important monasteries. It’s open to men only. The museum holds the oldest-known manuscript to record its own date (the book of the four gospels produced for the monastery between 1280 and 1281) and other items such as Moa’s stone cross and various cooking utensils. Overnight Dessie/Kombolcha

Day 15

DRIVE TO ADDIS ABABA AND DEPARTURE HOME

This day you will drive back to Addis Ababa. En route you will visit the panoramic scenery down to the Great Rift valley, from Gemasa Gedel/Menilk’s cliff. Late afternoon you will have a chance to have some shopping until the evening, where guests will have an arranged fare well dinner at one of Addis’ best traditional restaurant featuring live folkloric music and dance show before being driven to the airport for final departure.
  • Transportation
  • Surface (ground) transport to the sites
  • Transfers in and out
  • Accommodation
  • Twin or double bed occupancy basis
  • Camping at Danakil Depression and Erta-Ale Volcano
  • All Entrance fees
  • Meal
  • Full Board (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)

 

  • Guide service – English Language Speaking professional and Local guide
  • Scout service
  • Security Escort
  • Cook
  • Government Tax

International & domestic flights, all other meals, Alcoholic drinks, fax, telephone, laundry, porter fees, tips, photography fees, and other personal expenses not mentioned above.

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