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Erta Ale, Afar

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Tour Highlight

Danakil Depression, also called Afar Depression, is a geological depression in the Horn of Africa, where it overlaps Eritrea, the Afar Region of Ethiopia, and Djibouti. Danakil is well known as one of the cradles of hominids, containing the Middle Awash, site of many fossil hominid discoveries, site of the world’s oldest stone tools, and Hadar, site of Lucy, the fossilized specimen of Australopithecus afarensis.

Erta-Ale means “Smoking Mountain” in the local Afar language and its southernmost pit is known locally as “the gateway to Hell”. Erta Ale is centered over the east African rift valley system and the volcano comprises a mainly Mafic material which has been brought up to the surface caused by unroofing of the mantle due to the formation of the pull-apart basin.

Pagumen Special Package

  • Erta Ale


  • 4 Nights

Tour Code

  • PTSP 008


  • Air, Surface, & Trekking
Trip Info
  • Physical fitness is mandatory
  • Light closes and shorts during day time
  • Involves night trekking comfortable trekking boots walking
  • Sunscreen & Sunglasses
  • Aspirin – in case of altitude sickness
  • Head lamps and small torches

Day 01 Mekele - Hamed Ela

Early in the morning fly to Mekele after some refreshment and preparation drive directly to Hamed ela via the small town of Berhale where you will finalize all the entrance process and trip crew.

City tour of Addis Ababa includes National museum: home for the oldest and famous hominid fossil of ‘Lucy’, Ethnographic museum: treasured with cultural and historical artifacts from all over Ethiopia, Mount Entoto for the scenic view of Addis Ababa, Trinity cathedral church its unique architecture and iconic window paintings painted by the famous Ethiopian painter Afwork Tekle and Merkato: the biggest open-air market in East Africa.

Day 02Dallol

Crossing the salt road and the traditional salt extraction seen you will drive to the Dallol depression where you are able to see the colorful sulfur lake and landmark. Enjoy the view and drive back to Hamedila before the sun gets much hotter.

Day 03Erta Ale - The Living Volcano

Early in the morning drive to Ertale via the salt and desert road racing against the sand stuck. Lunch will be at the local elder house ‘Gilisa’ where we finalize our trip to Ert-ale. Arriving at the Campsite where we leave our Vehicles, we will wait for the sun to cool down and trek for about 3 hours to enjoy the live Volcano with an amazing noise the whole night.
Overnight will be on top of mount Erta– Ale.

Day 04Drive to Bahir Dar

Morning you will drive to Bahirdar which is about 180 kilometers. This drive will give you highlight the Landscape, culture and countryside people of Ethiopia. On your arrival, you will directly drive to the small town of Tis Abay to visit the Blue Nile falls.
After lunch, you will take a boat trip to visit the most amazing monasteries of Lake Tana among them Azwa Mariam and Ura kidanemihret worth to be visited.

Day 05Erta Ale - Mekele

Early the next morning, we descend Mount Ertale, returning to the base camp for a well-earned breakfast. We return to our vehicles and carry on to Mekele via the small towns of Habala and Erepti. Late Evening fly back to Addis.