+251-116-183-163     info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

Dallol Desert & Ertale Lava Lake Expedition

Lava trek, lava lakes & more. An adventure of like no other.

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Ethiopia is home to one of the hottest, lowest, and least livable places on Earth, as well as one of the eeriest.

The Danakil Depression, straddling Ethiopia and Eritrea, is a place where three tectonic plates converge in a land of volcanoes, salt lakes, and otherworldly rock formations.
The few inhabitants who live in the region rely on salt mining to get by. (If you’re interested in visiting, don’t travel here alone; escorts or tour groups familiar with the territory are highly recommended.)
The unwelcoming landscape is one of the most captivating you’ll ever see.

You can book this tour on any date as an individual journey!

Trip highlights:

  • Be amazed by a visit to the rock-hewn churches and monasteries of Tigray 
  • Meet your ancestor LUCY at the National Museum
  • Visit different less visited sites and meet with the local people 
  • Test varied Ethiopian food and attend Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony
  • Visit one of the few permanent lava lakes in the world Erta Ale
  • Enjou the colourful mineral fields in the Dallol area
  • see the ancient form of salt mining in the Danakil Depression
  • watch the camel caravans


Accommodation:

1 night in a 4-star Hotel in Addis, 1 night in a 4-star lodge in Gheralta and 3 nighs camping in the Dallol-Danakil Area. Bring a light sleeping bag!

Tour guide

This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated friendly cultural and nature tour guides who have lead many tours of Ethiopia and who know well about the history, culture, as well as with very good knowledge of nature & wildlife.

Our Drivers

Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation

On this adventure tour o one of the most arid areas of the world traveling by modern 4 x 4 vehicles with AC in an excellent condition. Due to security reasons a extra support vehicle for cook and scouts will accompany the tour

*Note: On this trip there will be a domestic flight from Addis Ababa to Mekelle and return. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

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Day 01: Addis Ababa Arrival

Arrive in Addis Ababa (ADD), Ethiopia. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by your tour guide and you will be transferred to your hotel.

The rest of the day is at leisure and to make preparation for the unique adventure which will begin the next day.

Late in the afternoon, you will meet with your tour guide at the hotel lobby for pre-tour briefing and also meet with the rest of the group members who will be with you for the next couple of days.

Overnight: Jupiter Bole

Day 02: Addis Ababa-Mekele-Hamedella (B-L-D)

Early in the morning, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight to Mekele. Upon arrival at Mekele Airport, you will be picked up by your drivers and the Grand Holidays team for the drive to Berhale. After picking up, permission at Berhale, we will continue driving North East to Hamedella where you will be staying two nights t.

The Danakil Depression is the northern part of the Afar Triangle or Afar Depression, a geological depression that has resulted from the presence of three tectonic plates in the Horn of Africa. This is photographic adventure is to one of the lowest, hottest and less inhospitable place on earth, nonetheless this is a place like otherworldly colorful mineral fields, and amazingly eye-catching landscapes.

Late in the afternoon, we will drive to the Depression where you can see and photograph with the late afternoon light the swirling Sulphur and mineral salt formations in the Danakil Depression, one of the hottest and harshest environments on earth

Here you will also witness and will be prevailed to photograph centuries old tradition of salt extraction in the big slat flats by the highlands load the salt bars on hundreds of camel caravan which will soon start their journey from the depression all the way to the highlands in more than two days long journey.

Overnight: Camping at Hamedella.

Day 03: Explore Dallol (B-L-D)

Early in the morning, we will drive to Dallol Depression crossing the Denakil Dessert from North to South. Lying at 130 meters below seas level, on the Ass-Ale Salt Lake, Dallol Depression is one of the hottest and lowest point on earth. This morning, we will also discover one of the most exciting places in Dallol, the water springs in the desert with multi-colored minerals coming gushing to the surface from the inner part of the Earth.

Late in the afternoon, we will have another photo shooting opportunity around Dallol Depression with late afternoon light with the salt flats and camel caravans.

Overnight: Camping at Hamedella

Day 04: Hamedella-Dodom-Ertale (B-L-D)

Early in the morning, cross the salt flat and the Denakil sand desert by 4x4 en-route stopping at different sites for morning shots of this amazing place as we cross the desert south north.

As we get off at Dodom, the base of the Ertale Crater, we take rest under the shade of our tents and we make preparation for Ertale Lava Trek we will start to trek as it starts to cool down by loading our equipment on camels. We will have a Lava trek on dead Lava for up to 15 K.M to the top of the Ertale Crater.


As we get on top of the crater we will take rest in our camp and have dinner here. After some rest, we will walk downhill to the Lava Lake for night shot. This is one of the most permanent and most active lava lake in the world.

After taking some night shots, we will walk back to our base camp for rest.

Overnight: Camping at Ertale.

Day 05: Ertale-Eribiti-Mekele (B-L-D)

Early in the morning, we will walk back to the Lava lake to take some morning shots with morning light and we will trek back to base camp at Dodom where we will meet our vehicles. After having breakfast, drive back to Gheralta en-route visiting the Tigray Rock-Hewn Churches

Overnight: Gheralta Lodge-Gheralta

Day 06: Gheralta-Mekele-Addis Ababa-Departure (B-L)

In the morning, visit around the Tigray Rock-Hewn Churches around gerhlta and drive to Mekele for the flight back to Addis Ababa.

B = breakfast. L = lunch, D = Dinner

 

 

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Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: 2.400,-
Single suppl.: 122,-

Group size: 2-12

Extra night in Addis
Double: 110,-
single: 65,-

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
21.-26.Nov 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
26.-31.Dec 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
09.-14.Jan 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
013.-18.Feb 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
13.-18.Mar 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • transport in 4 x 4 with AC
  • all necessary transfers
  • 1 night 5-star hotel and 1 night 4-star lodge in double rooms
  • 3 nights camping 
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • 5 l of water daily during camping
  • all entrance fees, permits and scoutfees
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)
  • taxes

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights

Tour duration:

The tour duration shown above is in the idea of the tour beginning and ending in Addis Ababa. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the holiday may be longer.

please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

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Follow the footsteps of the Queen of Sheba

Discover ancient African Civilization & undiluted culture.

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This cultural tour focuses on the ancient history & culture as well as the people and nature on the classic Historic Route of Ethiopia. Among other things, on this tour, you will visit 4 UNESCO World Heritage sites as we follow the footsteps of the legendary Queen of Sheba.

As you travel by road on the Classic Historic Route of Ethiopia, you will be able to explore more of the countries less visited beautiful nature, culture and history as all these unfolds in front of you each and every mile you drive. As you start driving from Addis Ababa, you will be passing through many villages and small towns. On this route, you will stop at Jemma River Gorge and you will be driving through the magnificent Blue Nile River Gorge, Ethiopia’s own Grand Canyon.

You can book this tour on any date as an individual journey!

Trip highlights:

  • Visit 4 UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • Be amazed by a visit to the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, “the living wonders of the world” 
  • Explore the ancient city of Axum the last resting place of the Ark of the Covenant. 
  • Visit the ruins of the Queen of Sheba 
  • Discover the fairytale castles of Gonder 
  • Visit the breathtaking Simien Mountains National Park, “the Roof of Africa” 
  • Discover the ancient Island monasteries of Lake Tana 
  • Visit the source of the mighty river, the Blue Nile & Blue Nile falls 
  • Visit the vibrant city of Addis Ababa, Africa’s Capital 
  • Meet your ancestor LUCY at the National Museum
  • Visit different less visited sites and meet with the local people 
  • Test varied Ethiopian food and attend Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony


Accommodation:

Depending on the category you booked on this trip you will be staying in either in a 4 or 3 star hotel Addis Ababa and on the rest of the trip to the Historic Route, you will be staying in the in good hotels or in the best available tourist standard hotels, lodges and resorts which are selected and inspected by our team regularly.

Planned Hotels:

In case of these hotels are not available we will provide accomodation of similar quality and standard!

Comfort:

  • Addis Abeba: Jupiter Bole
  • Bair Dar: Avanti Blue Nile
  • Gondar: Goha
  • Axum: Sabaen
  • Lalibela: Tukul Village

Budget:

  • Addis Ababa: Venetian or Heyday
  • Bahir Dar: Rahnile
  • Gondar: AG-Hotel
  • Axum: Consular
  • Lalibela: Harbe

Tour guide

This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated friendly cultural tour guides who have lead many tours to the Historic Route of Ethiopia and who know well about the history, culture, as well as with very good knowledge of nature & wildlife.

Our Drivers

Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation

On this cultural tour to the Historic Route of Ethiopia you will be traveling by coaster bus for the most part. We have an excellent condition, well maintained busses suitable for the road condition you will be traveling to. All our vehicles have an A.C and seat belts.

*Note: On this trip there will be a domestic flight from Axum to Lalibela and then to Addis Ababa. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

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Day 1: 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 to Jupiter Hotel (4*). There will be a short drive to your hotel. The rest of the day, you will have city tour of Addis Ababa which includes the National Museum, one of the churches in Addis Ababa, Piassa, Merkato and you will enjoy the view from Mount Entoto. If you arrive later, the city tour will we on the last day.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 2: Addis Ababa-Bahirdar (B-D)

In the morning, drive to Bahirdar through the Great Blue Nile Gorge with a stop over at different small towns like Dejen, Chancho and Goha Tsion.The Blue Nile Gorge is a majestic and enormous river gorge which has a magnificent, alluring physical feature and natural beauty. It is referred by many as “the Grand Canyon of Ethiopia” It’s one of the most captivating gorges in Africa.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 3: Lake Tana-Blue Nile Falls-Bahir Dar (B-D)

In the morning, 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.After having lunch at the hotel, we will drive 35 KM to visit the majestic Blue Nile Falls.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 4: Bahir Dar-Gondar- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After breakfast, drive to Gondar through the beautiful countryside scenery of Fogera to arrive at Gondar around lunchtime. Gondar, founded by Emperor Fasiledas around 1635. This UNESCO World Heritage is famous for its many medieval castles and the design and architecture of its churches-in particular, Debre Birhan Selassie represents a masterpiece of unique Ethiopian School of traditional art. This afternoon, you will visit the ancient city.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 5: Gondar-Simien Mountains National Park- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. (B-D)

After an early breakfast, we will drive to the Simien mountains National park. 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 rest of the day we will have a little trek to explore the surrounding of Sankaber, part of the Simien Mountains National Park among troops of endemic Gelada Baboons

Accommodation: Simien Lodge-Buyit Ras. (Meals: B/L/D)

Day 6: Simien Mountains National Park-Axum- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After breakfast start driving to Axum through the beautiful sceneries of Simien Mountains, Limalimo, Tekeze River Gorge. While driving from Simien Mountains to Axum, you will have a brief stop at different parts of the park for the best view. You will have picnic lunch under the shade of the tree past the Tekeze River Gorge whilst enjoying the beautiful Simien Mountains scenery from distance. 

Past the Tekeze River Gorge whilst enjoying the beautiful Simien Mountains scenery from distance, you will have picnic lunch under the shade of a tree and continue driving to Axum.
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 7: Axum-Yeha (B-)D)

After breakfast, we will start to visit the ancient city of Axum. This is the birthplace of Ethiopian civilization and last resting place of the Holy Ark of the Covenant.This morning we will visit the ancient city and explore the ancient Steles, the ruins of the palace of Queen of Sheba and its major attractions. In the afternoon, an excursion to the pre-Christian temple of Yeha.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 8: Axum-Lalibela -UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After having an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Axum Airport for your flight to Lalibela. After check in to hotel, we will drive to the site where we will find a concentration of some of Ethiopia’s most famous rock-hewn churches, mostly referred by many as “the living wonders of the world” 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.

Today, we will visit the first group of rock-hewn churches. In the evening, there will be Ethiopian traditional coffee ceremony for the group prepared at a local house.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 9: Asheten Mariam-Lalibela (B-D)

In the morning, take a mule ride, and /or 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.After having lunch and rest at the hotel, you will continue your 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.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 10: Lalibela-Addis Ababa-Departure (B-D)

After breakfast, transfer to Lalibela airport for the flight to Addis Ababa. (City tour if not on first day)
Flight schedule permitting 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. At the end of the farewell dinner party, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back. End of tour!

B = breakfast. L = lunch, D = Dinner

 

 

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Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: Budget 1.772,-, Comfort 1.990,-
Single suppl.: Budget 236,-, Comfort 392,-

Group size: 2-12

Extra night in Addis
Double: Budget 70,-, Comfort 110,-
single: Budget 50,- Comfort 90,-

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
12.-21.Aug 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
16.-25.Sep 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
14.-23.Oct 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
04.-13.Nov 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
23.Dec 16 – 01.Jan 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
07.-16.Jan 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
03.-12.Feb 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
11.-20.Mar 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • transport in mini- or coaster bus with AC
  • all necessary transfers
  • 9 nights accommodation in good hotels (4-star in Addis Abeba) in double rooms
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • all entrance fees
  • boattrip on Lake Tana
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)
  • taxes

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights


Tour duration:

The tour duration shown above is in the idea of the tour beginning and ending in Addis Ababa. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the holiday may be longer.

please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

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Ethiopia Photographic Expeditions

Unique photographic Opportunity: remote tribes, wildlife & nature

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Photography Expedition to the Tribes of the Omo Valley

This is a small group photographic expedition to the remote Tribes of the Omo Valley to witness some of the last remaining authentic tribes in the African continent. .

This photographic expeditions will take you on the East Side of the Omo River. On this photo trip you will visit the Konso, Hamer, Karo and Nyangatom tribes. You will spend couple of days visiting their villages and intermingling with the different tribes, learning their life style, attending ceremonies and rituals taking photos. There will be enough time with good light at different days to photograph their day today activities when they do their body & face paintings, herd their cattle, do farming and more.

Being isolated from the fast moving world because of their remote locations, for thousands of years, the Omo Valley is truly a heaven for anthropologists and for photographers looking for a unique photographing opportunity to a region less known and photographed seldom.

Tour guide
This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated friendly who have lead many photography tour to the Omo Valley. They know each and every village really well and they will guide you on the best time and place to be. They have an immense knowledge of the tribes you will be visiting, their culture and how to deal with them

Our Drivers
Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the challenging Omo Valley area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation
On this Photographic Expedition to the Omo Valley, we will be using comfortable 4x4s to the most part.
- Domestic flight: there will be one leg commercial domestic flight from Addis Ababa to Arbaminch.

Accommodation:
On this trip you will be staying in a 4 star hotel in Addis Ababa and best available lodges in Turmi. In Dus, we will be having a comfortable mobile camp with canvas tent which will be waiting for us ready before we arrive. We will also have our cooks ready for this part of the trip. There will be electric power to charge our batteries as well as proper mobile shower and toilet in the mobile tented camp.

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Day 1: Arrive Addis Ababa

Arrive at Bole International Airport, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Welcome to Ethiopia. Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by your local tour leader and transfer to Golden Tulip 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). 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". The rest of the day, relax in your comfortable hotel and get ready for the unique adventure awaiting.

Overnight at Golden Tulip Hotel-Addis Ababa.

Day 2: Addis Ababa-Arbaminch (B-L-D)

We will have a nice breakfast in the morning and get ready for pre-tour briefing. This morning, we will share different useful information before we go ahead with the photo trip to the Omo Valley, one of the most remote places on the planet.

After the pre-tour briefing, we will meet our driver for the transfer to Addis Ababa Airport for our flight to Arbaminch. A 40-minute flight takes us to the Great Rift Valley.
Upon arrival at Arbaminch Airport, you will meet with your drivers and start driving north to mountain village of Chencha located on the South Western escarpment of the Great Rift Valley running north south all the way to Mozambique. This is the home of the Dorze people. The Dorze people, once famous warriors in the region, they are now renowned cotton weavers whose tall beehive shaped and bamboo woven dwellings are among the most distinctive structures to be seen anywhere in Africa.
Our visit to this village and the unique cultural experience is a nice way to get slowly to the authentic tribal experience wait for us deep in the Omo Valley. As the sun goes down, we will drive back to Arbaminch enjoying the beautiful view with the sunset and drive through hundreds and hundreds of cattle herds here and there as they come back from day long grazing in the field.

Overnight - Paradise Lodge-Arbaminch

Day 3-5 From Arbaminch to Turmi (B-L-D)

After breakfast, we will continue driving further south west to the Omo Valley. Driving from Arbaminch to Turmi, noting prepares you for the exciting experience awaiting you as we will be driving through many tribal villages and small towns including the Tsemay and Konso.

Our last destination for today is the Turmi, home to the beautiful Nomadic Hamer Tribe living on the side of Keske River. The Hamer, display an elaborate and diverse selection of body decorations. They are also identifiable for their high cheekbones, elaborate custom of beads, cowries and leather, and thick copper necklaces. The Hamer women are striking; wearing beautiful colorful beaded skins, ornate necklaces, and metal bangles around their wrist and ankles. We hope to arrive at the lodge for late lunch and be in time to visit Hamer village with good light for photography.

For the next three nights, we will be based here at Turmi Village the center of the Hamer Tribes and other tribes living in the surrounding area. This will give us a great chance to attend different rituals including, Evangadi and Bull Jumping Ceremonies in some of the off-road tribal villages. From our base here, will help us great deal to create a wonderful photographic opportunity for the next three nights. This allows us to be flexible and capitalize on all the photographic opportunities in the area. During our stay in Turmi, we will visit the Arbore and Desanech tribes.

Isolated for millennia from the rest of the world, the beautiful Omo Valley is home to an exciting mix of many small and distinctive tribal groups. Amongst others, we find the Karo, the Mursi and the Hamer-all of whom have retained their own unique customs and traditions. Lifestyles are as varied as the tribes themselves. Lacking any material, culture and artifacts common to other cultures, these tribes find unique ways in which to express their artistic impulses. Arbore women are well known for their long headdresses. The girls shave their heads to indicate virginity, and only start growing hair after marriage. The Desanech are a semi-nomadic tribe living on the shore of Omo. Their clans stretch across Sudan, Kenya and Southern Ethiopia. They are known for their very unique and ornate hair buns. Both the Surma and the Karo, for example, are experts at body painting, using clays and locally available vegetable pigments to trace fantastic patterns on each other's faces, chests, arms, and legs. These designs are created purely for fun and aesthetic effect, each artist vying to outdo his fellows.

Overnight: Buska Lodge

Day 6-9 Karo-Dus  (B-L-D)

This morning, we will have a chance for one final shooting with the Hamer before we continue our drive to the Kara Tribe residing on the shore of the Omo River. The Kara are the masters in body & face painting which they practice on daily bases. Before their rituals and dances they carefully paint their faces and body as well as the faces of their friends using different color soil, mineral, plan pigments, flowers, white chalks and black charcoal. Men are mostly well decorated with red clay hair buns, prepared for days to be ready for the event.

For the next couple of days, you will have the chance to mingle with Kara and spend quality time with them, learning about their daily activities including attending different rituals, follow them as they herd their cattle, do farming.
Our mobile tent will be set up along the shore of Omo River as we will make Dus our village for the next three days. This will help us to get very close to the Karo Tribes.

Overnight: Mobile Camping-

Day 9 Dus-Konso (B-L-D)

Today we leave this exceptional region towards Konso. The Konso are famous for their old and unique terracing (UNESCO- World Heritage Site) and unusual engraved wooden statues of Konso grave markers. The villages are protected with huge stone walls.

Day 10 Konso-Langano (B-L-D)

After breakfast we drive north to the beautiful lake Langano. On the way we will stop at different villages. Later in the afternoon you can relax on the beach (bilharzia free) and enjoy the birds at the lake.

Day 11 Langano–Addis Ababa (B-L-D)

The morning is free for leisure. After lunch we drive back to Addis Ababa. Depending on the flight schedule a farewell dinner with local specialties and cultural dances can be organized. Transfer to Airport - end of tour.

B = breakfast. L = lunch, D = Dinner

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Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: 3,898.00
Single suppl.: 498.00 

Group size: 4-8

Extra night in Addis
Double: 110.00
single: 90.00

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
 September 6 – 16,  2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 October 6-18 , 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 November 6-18, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 November 12- 22, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 November 18 – 28, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 December 7-18, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 December 11-  22, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
 December 14-26, 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
Jan 6- Jan. 16, 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
Jan. 18-Jan. 29, 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
Feb. 6-Feb. 16, 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • transport 4 x 4 with AC
  • all necessary transfers
  • 7 nights accommodation in good hotels and lodges (4-star in Addis Abeba) in double rooms
  • 3 nights camping (bring your own light sleeping bag)
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • all entrance fees
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)
  • taxes
  • PHOTO-FEES

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights

Tour duration:

The tour duration shown above is in the idea of the tour beginning and ending in Addis Ababa. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the holiday may be longer.

please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

 

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The Classic Historic Route of Ethiopia

Discover ancient African Civilization & undiluted culture

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This 13 Days tour takes you the Classic Historic Route of Ethiopia & Tribes of the Omo Valley. On this trip you will be privileged to witness the ancient African civilization and well preserved  old culture of the northern Ethiopia with its breathtaking mountainous landscape to the isolated tribes of the Omo Valley and their unique traditions. 

This tour includes a visit to the major highlights of the Historic North of Ethiopia and the major sites of the Omo Valley and Ethiopian Great Rift Valley with a visit to the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, Simien Mountais, Axum, Gonder and the major tribes of the Omo like Hamer and Mursi tribes of the Omo. This simply is the highlight of Ethiopia’s Historic Route and Omo Valley.

Trip highlights:-    

  • Visit 5 UNESCO World heritage sites
  • Discover the living wonders of the world
  • Explore the ancient city of Axum the last resting place of the Ark of the Covenants
  • Visit the fairytale castles of Gonder
  • Embark on a boat cruise to visit the island monasteries of Lake tana
  • Visit the source of the Blue Nile & Blue Nile Falls
  • Explore remote tribal villages in the Omo Valley
  • Attend cultural activities and visit courful tribal markets in the Omo
  • Enjoy city tour of Addis Ababa

Accommodation:

On this trip you will be staying in  a 4 star hotel in Addis Ababa and on the rest of the trip to the Historic Route, you will be staying in the best available tourist standard hotels,  lodges and resorts which are selected and inspected by our team regularly.

Tour Guide:

This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated  friendly cultural tour guides who have lead many tours to the Historic Route of Ethiopia and Omo Valley,  who knows well about the history, culture, as well as with very good knowledge of nature & wildlife.

Our Drivers

Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation

On this cultural tour to the Historic Route of Ethiopia & Omo Valley you will be traveling by coaster bus to the North and for the Southern part with a comfortable 4x4. We have an excellent condition, well maintained busses and 4X4s  suitable for the road condition you will be traveling to. All our vehicles have an A.C and seat belts.

 

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Day 1:  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 to your Hotel. There will be a short drive to your hotel.

The rest of the day, you will have city tour of Addis Ababa which includes the National Museum, one of the churches, Piassa and other parts of the city.

Overnight Hotel

Day 2: Addis Ababa- Bahirdar (B-D)

In the morning, fly to Bahirdar. At Bahirdar, you will be picked by your driver for the transfer to your hotel. After check in to hotel. From there we will have 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.
In the afternoon you will drive 35 KM to visit the majestic Blue Nile Falls.

Overnight Hotel

Day 3: Bahirdar -Gondar –UNESCO World Heritage Site (B-D)

After breakfast, drive to Gondar through the beautiful countryside scenery of Fogera to arrive at Gondar around lunchtime.

Gondar, founded by Emperor Fasiledas around 1635. This UNESCO World Heritage site is famous for its many medieval castles and the design and architecture of its churches-in particular, Debre Birhan Selassie represents a masterpiece of unique Ethiopian School of traditional art. This afternoon, you will visit the ancient city.

Overnight Hotel

Day 4:  Gondar-Axum-UNESCO World Heritage Site (B- D)

In the morning, transfer to Gondar Airport for your flight to Axum. A short flight takes you to Axum. After check in to your Hotel, you will start to visit the ancient city of Axum.

This is the birthplace of Ethiopian civilization and the last resting place of the Holy Ark of the Covenant. This is also one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Site.
The rest of the day you will explore the ancient city and its major attractions.

Overnight Hotel

Day 6: Axum-Lalibela -UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. (B-D)

After having an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Axum Airport for your flight to Lalibela. After check in to hotel, we will drive to the site where we will find a concentration of some of Ethiopia’s most famous rock-hewn churches, mostly referred by many as “the living wonders of the world”. 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.

Today, we will visit the first group of rock-hewn churches. In the evening, there will be Ethiopian traditional coffee ceremony for the group prepared at a local house.

Overnight Hotel

Day 6: Asheten Mariam-Lalibela (B-D)

In the morning, take a mule ride, and /or 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.  

After having lunch and rest at the hotel, you will continue your 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.

Overnight Hotel

Day 7: Lalibela-Addis Ababa-Langano (B-D)

After breakfast, transfer to Lalibela airport for the flight to Addis Ababa. Upon arrival, we will meet our drivers for the drive to the Great Ethiopian Rift Valley, Lake Langano. While driving from Addis Ababa to Langano, we will pass by different small towns and we will stop for a visit at one of the most beautiful Rift Valley Lakes, Lake Ziway.

The rest of the day, relax around the beautiful Sabana Lodge perched on the top of the hill overlooking the beautiful lake.

Overnight Lodge

Day 8: Langano-Dorze-Arbaminch (B-D)

In the morning, start driving further south west to the Great Rift Valley en-route visiting the different small villages Welyita at Sodo and Alaba at Tembaro.

When we approach Arbaminch town, we will make a detour to drive north to mountain village of Chencha located on the South Western escarpment of the Great Rift Valley running north south all the way to Mozambique. This is the home of the Dorze people. The Dorze people, once famous warriors in the region, they are now renowned cotton weavers whose tall beehive shaped and bamboo woven dwellings are among the most distinctive structures to be seen anywhere in Africa.

Overnight Hotel

Day 9: Arbaminch-Jinka (B-Picknic Lunch-D)

After an early breakfast, we will drive to Jinka en-route visiting different cultural people and their villages which include the Konso, Tsemai, and Ari.

The Konso are famous for their old and unique terracing and unusual engraved wooden statues of Konso grave markers.  Between Konso and Jinka, will also have brief stops to visit the different cultural people and their villages like: Tsemay around Weito River, the Benna at Keyafer and the Ari at Kako Village.

Overnight Lodge

Day 10: Jinka-Mago-Mursi-Jinka (B- Picknic Lunch-D)

After having an early breakfast, we will drive from Jinka to Mursi Village. The Mursi, undoubtedly the most celebrated residents of South Omo are distinctive group of pastoralists. The Mursi are best known for their unique item of decoration, lip plates. Women of Mursi wear circular clay plate on their lower lip and the bigger a woman can wear, the greater her value when she gets married.  

After our visit to the Mursi Village, we will have our picnic lunch in the Mago National Park and drive to Turmi.

Overnight Lodge

Day 11:  Turmi-Omorate (B-Picknic Lunch- D)

In the cool morning, we will drive to Omorate to visit the Desanech (Geleb) tribal village after crossing the Omo River by boat. The Desanech are nomadic pastoralists found across the western bank of the Omo River south of Lake Turkana very close to the Kenyan boarder.

In the afternoon, we will drive to Hamer Village. The Hamer, display an elaborate and diverse selection of body decorations. They are also identifiable for their high cheekbones, elaborate custom of beads, cowries and leather, and thick copper necklaces. At the same village we will enjoy the seasonal cultural activities including the famous Evangadi (Hamer Dancing).  

Overnight Lodge

Day 12: Turmi-Arbaminch (B-D)

In the morning, we will start driving back to Arbaminch with brief stops to visit different villages including Erbore and Tsemay.

In the afternoon, we will have a boat cruise over Lake Chamo to see some of the biggest African crocodiles. Hippopotamus and many beautiful aquatic birds including the lovely Kingfisher and African Fish Eagle are also easily seen.
 
Overnight Lodge

Day 13: Arbaminch – Tia Stele (UNESCO World Heritage Site) - Addis Ababa-Departure (B-D)

In the morning, drive back to Addis Ababa en-route visiting the pre historic Tyia Steles, where you will see the southernmost example of a peculiar type of engraved, standing stele which stretch across parts of southern Ethiopia. These steles are believed to have been erected between the 12th and 14th centuries and are almost certainly grave markers. Recent excavations at Tiya have revealed the remains of young people of both sexes, aged between 18 - 30 and buried in fetal positions.  Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Stele field at Tiya today comprises more than 45 stones of up to 2m.
 
In the evening, there will be farewell dinner party with traditional special buffet and local drinks. There will also be cultural dance show of the different ethnic groups living in the country. There will not be any better way of ending a trip. At the end of the farewell dinner, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back home. End of tour!

 

 

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Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: 2.980,-
Single suppl.: 420,-

Group size: 2-12

Extra night in Addis
Double: 110,-
Single: 90,-

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
24.Oct.-05.Nov 16 Confirmed Available Book Now
14.-26.Nov 16 Confirmed Available Book Now
26.Dec 16 – 07.Jan 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
30.Jan – 11.Feb 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
13.-25.Feb 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
13.-25.Mar 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
10.-22.Apr 17 Confirmed Available Book Now

 

*Note: On this trip there will be a domestic flights from Addis Ababa to Bahir Dar, Gondar to Axum, Axum to Lalibela and Lalibela to Addis Ababa. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • all necessary transfers
  • 12 nights accommodation in good hotels (4-star in Addis Abeba) in double rooms
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • all entrance fees, scout fees, boat trips etc.
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights

Planned Hotels:

  • Addis Abeba: Jupiter Bole
  • Bair Dar: Avanti Blue Nile
  • Gondar: Goha
  • Axum: Sabaen
  • Lalibela: Tukul Village
  • Langano: Sabana Lodge
  • Arba Minch: Paradise Lodge
  • Jinka: Eco Omo Lodge
  • Turmi: Buska Lodge

 

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Omo Valley “the unique wilderness”

Travel back in time and discover the isolated tribes of the Omo.

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Isolated for millennia from the rest of the world, the beautiful Omo Valley is home to an exciting mix of many small and distinctive tribal groups. Amongst others, we find the Karo, the Mursi and the Hamer-all of whom have retained their own unique customs and traditions. Lifestyles are as varied as the tribes themselves. Lacking any material, culture and artifacts common to other cultures, these tribes find unique ways in which to express their artistic impulses. Both the Surma and the Karo, for example, are experts at body painting, using clays and locally available vegetable pigments to trace fantastic patterns on each other's faces, chests, arms, and legs. These designs are created purely for fun and aesthetic effect, each artist vying to outdo his fellows.

In this captivating region, you are privileged to witness age-old customs and rituals, learning of the symbolisms that remain an integral part of everyday life, it’s absolutely a unique wilderness.

 

You can book this tour on any date as an individual journey! 

 

Trip highlights:

Accommodation:

Depending on the category you booked on this trip you will be staying in either in a 4 or 3 star hotel Addis Ababa and on the rest of the trip to the Historic Route, you will be staying in the in good hotels or in the best available tourist standard hotels, lodges and resorts which are selected and inspected by our team regularly.

Tour guide

This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated friendly cultural tour guides who have lead many tours to the Historic Route of Ethiopia and who know well about the history, culture, as well as with very good knowledge of nature & wildlife.

Our Drivers

Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation

On this cultural tour to the Historic Route of Ethiopia you will be traveling by coaster bus for the most part. We have an excellent condition, well maintained busses suitable for the road condition you will be traveling to. All our vehicles have an A.C and seat belts.

*Note: On this trip there will be a domestic flight from Axum to Lalibela and then to Addis Ababa. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

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Day 1:  Arrive Addis Ababa

Arrive at Bole (ADD), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Welcome to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia! Upon arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, you will be assisted by your tour guide and driver for the transfer to Jupiter Hotel (4 Star).

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). 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".

A half day city tour is included in the rate. You visit the National Museum (Lucy), one of the churches in Addis, the Merkato and enjoy the view from the Entoto Mountain.

 

Overnight: Hotel Jupiter Bole

 

Day 2: Addis Ababa-Arbaminch-Tia Stele (UNESCO World Heritage Site) (B-D)

 

In the morning, start driving south of Addis Ababa through though Butajira en While driving further south you will stop at Tiya, where you will see the southern-most example of a peculiar type of engraved, standing stele which stretch across parts of southern Ethiopia. These steles are believed to have been erected between the 12th and 14th centuries and are almost certainly grave markers. Recent excavations at Tiya have revealed the remains of young people of both sexes, aged between 18 - 30 and buried in fetal positions.  Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the stele field at Tiya today comprises more than 45 stones of up to 2m.

After lunch, we will continue driving to Arbaminch on the way visiting the different small villages Welyita at Sodo and Alaba at Tembaro.

 

Overnight: Paradise Lodge

 

Day 3: Arbaminch-Jinka (B-Picnic Lunch-D)

 

After an early breakfast, we will drive to Jinka en-route visiting different cultural people and their villages which include the Konso, Tsemai, and Ari.

The Konso are famous for their old and unique terracing and unusual engraved wooden statues of Konso grave markers.  Between Konso and Jinka, will also have brief stops to visit the different cultural people and their villages like: Tsemay around Weito River, the Benna at Keyafer and the Ari at Kako Village.

 

Overnight: Omo Eco-Jinka. (Meal: B/L/D)

                                               

Day 4: Jinka-Mago-Mursi-Jinka (B-Picnic Lunch-D)

 

After having an early breakfast, we will drive from Jinka to Mursi Village. The Mursi, undoubtedly the most celebrated residents of South Omo are distinctive group of pastoralists. The Mursi are best known for their unique item of decoration, lip plates. Women of Mursi wear circular clay plate on their lower lip and the bigger a woman can wear, the greater her value when she gets married. 

After our visit to the Mursi Village, we will have our picnic lunch in the Mago National Park and drive to Turmi.

 

Overnight: Buska Lodge

 

Day 5:  Turmi-Omorate (B-Picnic Lunch-D)

 

In the cool morning, we will drive to Omorate to visit the Desanech (Geleb) tribal village after crossing the Omo River by boat. The Desanech are nomadic pastoralists found across the western bank of the Omo River south of Lake Turkana very close to the Kenyan boarder.

In the afternoon, we will drive to Hamer Village. The Hamer, display an elaborate and diverse selection of body decorations. They are also identifiable for their high cheekbones, elaborate custom of beads, cowries and leather, and thick copper necklaces. At the same village we might enjoy the seasonal cultural activities including the famous Evangadi (Hamer Dancing). 

 

Overnight: Buska Lodge

 

Day 6: Turmi-Arbaminch (B-D)

 

In the morning, we will start driving back to Arbaminch with brief stops to visit different villages including Erbore and Tsemay.

In the afternoon, we will have a boat cruise over Lake Chamo to see some of the biggest African crocodiles. Hippopotamus and many beautiful aquatic birds including the lovely Kingfisher and African Fish Eagle are also easily seen.

 

Overnight: Paradise Lodge Hotel-Arbaminch

 

Day 7: Arbaminch –Addis Ababa-Departure (B-D)

 

In the morning, drive back to Addis Ababa en-route visiting the different small towns like Shashemene where Rastafarian lives, Ziway and one of the Great Rift Valley Lakes Ziway.

In the evening, there will be farewell dinner party with traditional special buffet and local drinks. There will also be cultural dance show of the different ethnic groups living in the country. There will not be any better way of ending a trip.

At the end of the farewell dinner, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back home. End of tour!

 

B - breakfast, L - lunch, D - dinner

 

 

[/bt_tab][bt_tab icon="icon:fighter-jet" class="tab_itinerary" title="Dates & Rates"]

Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: Budget 1.772,-, Comfort 1.990,-
Single suppl.: Budget 236,-, Comfort 392,-

Group size: max. 12

Extra night in Addis
Double: Budget 70,-, Comfort 110,-
single: Budget 50,- Comfort 90,-

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
12.-21.Aug 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
16.-25.Sep 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
14.-23.Oct 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
04.-13.Nov 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
23.Dec 16 – 01.Jan 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
07.-16.Jan 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
03.-12.Feb 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
11.-20.Mar 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • transport in mini- or coaster bus with AC
  • all necessary transfers
  • 9 nights accommodation in good hotels (4-star in Addis Abeba) in double rooms
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • all entrance fees
  • boattrip on Lake Tana
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)
  • taxes

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights


Tour duration:

The tour duration shown above is in the idea of the tour beginning and ending in Addis Ababa. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the holiday may be longer.

please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

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Ethiopian Festival Tours & The Historic Route

Witness colorful ancient festival on the Historic Route of Ethiopia

 

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This cultural tour focuses on the ancient history & culture as well as the people and nature on the classic Historic Route of Ethiopia. Among other things, on this tour, you will visit 4 UNESCO World Heritage sites as we follow the footsteps of the legendary Queen of Sheba.

As you travel by road on the Classic Historic Route of Ethiopia, you will be able to explore more of the countries less visited beautiful nature, culture and history as all these unfolds in front of you each and every mile you drive. As you start driving from Addis Ababa, you will be passing through many villages and small towns. On this route, you will stop at Jemma River Gorge and you will be driving through the magnificent Blue Nile River Gorge, Ethiopia’s own Grand Canyon.

Trip highlights:

  • Visit 4 UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • Be amazed by a visit to the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, “the living wonders of the world” 
  • Explore the ancient city of Axum the last resting place of the Ark of the Covenant. 
  • Visit the ruins of the Queen of Sheba 
  • Discover the fairytale castles of Gonder 
  • Visit the breathtaking Simien Mountains National Park, “the Roof of Africa” 
  • Discover the ancient Island monasteries of Lake Tana 
  • Visit the source of the mighty river, the Blue Nile & Blue Nile falls 
  • Visit the vibrant city of Addis Ababa, Africa’s Capital 
  • Meet your ancestor LUCY at the National Museum
  • Visit different less visited sites and meet with the local people 
  • Test varied Ethiopian food and attend Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony


Accommodation:

Depending on the category you booked on this trip you will be staying in either in a 4 or 3 star hotel Addis Ababa and on the rest of the trip to the Historic Route, you will be staying in the in good hotels or in the best available tourist standard hotels, lodges and resorts which are selected and inspected by our team regularly.

Planned Hotels:

In case of these hotels are not available we will provide accomodation of similar quality and standard!

Comfort:

  • Addis Abeba: Jupiter Bole
  • Bair Dar: Avanti Blue Nile
  • Gondar: Goha
  • Axum: Sabaen
  • Lalibela: Tukul Village

Budget:

  • Addis Ababa: Venetian or Heyday
  • Bahir Dar: Rahnile
  • Gondar: AG-Hotel
  • Axum: Consular
  • Lalibela: Harbe

Tour guide

This tour will be lead by our experienced A rated friendly cultural tour guides who have lead many tours to the Historic Route of Ethiopia and who know well about the history, culture, as well as with very good knowledge of nature & wildlife.

Our Drivers

Our drivers are well trained and well travelled to the area. They know all the terrains and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many…many travelers who have been on the road with them for long.

Transportation

On this cultural tour to the Historic Route of Ethiopia you will be traveling by coaster bus for the most part. We have an excellent condition, well maintained busses suitable for the road condition you will be traveling to. All our vehicles have an A.C and seat belts.

*Note: On this trip there will be a domestic flight from Axum to Lalibela and then to Addis Ababa. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

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[bt_tab icon="icon:fighter-jet" class="tab_itinerary" title="Itnerary"]

Day 1: 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 to Jupiter Hotel (4*). There will be a short drive to your hotel. The rest of the day, you will have city tour of Addis Ababa which includes the National Museum, one of the churches in Addis Ababa, Piassa, Merkato and you will enjoy the view from Mount Entoto. If you arrive later, the city tour will we on the last day.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 2: Addis Ababa-Bahirdar (B-D)

In the morning, drive to Bahirdar through the Great Blue Nile Gorge with a stop over at different small towns like Dejen, Chancho and Goha Tsion.The Blue Nile Gorge is a majestic and enormous river gorge which has a magnificent, alluring physical feature and natural beauty. It is referred by many as “the Grand Canyon of Ethiopia” It’s one of the most captivating gorges in Africa.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 3: Lake Tana-Blue Nile Falls-Bahir Dar (B-D)

In the morning, 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.After having lunch at the hotel, we will drive 35 KM to visit the majestic Blue Nile Falls.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 4: Bahir Dar-Gondar- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After breakfast, drive to Gondar through the beautiful countryside scenery of Fogera to arrive at Gondar around lunchtime. Gondar, founded by Emperor Fasiledas around 1635. This UNESCO World Heritage is famous for its many medieval castles and the design and architecture of its churches-in particular, Debre Birhan Selassie represents a masterpiece of unique Ethiopian School of traditional art. This afternoon, you will visit the ancient city.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 5: Gondar-Simien Mountains National Park- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. (B-D)

After an early breakfast, we will drive to the Simien mountains National park. 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 rest of the day we will have a little trek to explore the surrounding of Sankaber, part of the Simien Mountains National Park among troops of endemic Gelada Baboons

Accommodation: Simien Lodge-Buyit Ras. (Meals: B/L/D)

Day 6: Simien Mountains National Park-Axum- UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After breakfast start driving to Axum through the beautiful sceneries of Simien Mountains, Limalimo, Tekeze River Gorge. While driving from Simien Mountains to Axum, you will have a brief stop at different parts of the park for the best view. You will have picnic lunch under the shade of the tree past the Tekeze River Gorge whilst enjoying the beautiful Simien Mountains scenery from distance. 

Past the Tekeze River Gorge whilst enjoying the beautiful Simien Mountains scenery from distance, you will have picnic lunch under the shade of a tree and continue driving to Axum.
Accommodation: Hotel

Day 7: Axum-Yeha (B-)D)

After breakfast, we will start to visit the ancient city of Axum. This is the birthplace of Ethiopian civilization and last resting place of the Holy Ark of the Covenant.This morning we will visit the ancient city and explore the ancient Steles, the ruins of the palace of Queen of Sheba and its major attractions. In the afternoon, an excursion to the pre-Christian temple of Yeha.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 8: Axum-Lalibela -UNESCO’s World Heritage Site (B-D)

After having an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Axum Airport for your flight to Lalibela. After check in to hotel, we will drive to the site where we will find a concentration of some of Ethiopia’s most famous rock-hewn churches, mostly referred by many as “the living wonders of the world” 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.

Today, we will visit the first group of rock-hewn churches. In the evening, there will be Ethiopian traditional coffee ceremony for the group prepared at a local house.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 9: Asheten Mariam-Lalibela (B-D)

In the morning, take a mule ride, and /or 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.After having lunch and rest at the hotel, you will continue your 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.

Accommodation: Hotel

Day 10: Lalibela-Addis Ababa-Departure (B-D)

After breakfast, transfer to Lalibela airport for the flight to Addis Ababa. (City tour if not on first day)
Flight schedule permitting 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. At the end of the farewell dinner party, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back. End of tour!

B = breakfast. L = lunch, D = Dinner

 

 

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Rates are per person in USD

Confirmed - This tour is guaranteed to operate
Available - This date is available and open for bookings. Go for it!
Rate per person: Budget 1.772,-, Comfort 1.990,-
Single suppl.: Budget 236,-, Comfort 392,-

Group size: 2-12

Extra night in Addis
Double: Budget 70,-, Comfort 110,-
single: Budget 50,- Comfort 90,-

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Travel DatesStatusSpace availibilityBook Now
12.-21.Aug 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
16.-25.Sep 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
14.-23.Oct 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
04.-13.Nov 2016 Confirmed Available Book Now
23.Dec 16 – 01.Jan 17 Confirmed Available Book Now
07.-16.Jan 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
03.-12.Feb 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now
11.-20.Mar 2017 Confirmed Available Book Now

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Rate includes:

  • roundtrip as per program
  • transport in mini- or coaster bus with AC
  • all necessary transfers
  • 9 nights accommodation in good hotels (4-star in Addis Abeba) in double rooms
  • all meals as stated in the program
  • all entrance fees
  • boattrip on Lake Tana
  • English speaking, qualified national tour guide
  • farewell-dinner (flight schedule permitting)
  • taxes

Not included:

  • visa fees
  • tips
  • meals not stated in the program
  • all expenses of personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • domestic flights


Tour Durations

The tour duration shown above is in the idea of the tour beginning and ending in Addis Ababa. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the holiday may be longer.

please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: info@grandholidaysethiopia.com

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Birding in Ethiopia

Ethiopia a paradise for birders

Ethiopia’s greatly diversified ecosystem makes it one of the richest habitats in Africa for birds and mammals. With more than  860 bird specious of birds, Ethiopia possesses about 10% of  the world’s bird specious and about 40% of the African birds are found here. Among these 16 specious of birds are only found in Ethiopia, not anywhere else. That is the reason why we say, Ethiopia is a must for bird enthusiasts. 

This birding holiday  will enable you to view a significant number of Ethiopian birds. On this tour  will also have the chance  to spot some of the endemic birds and mammals as we explore some of the breathtaking sceneries including   Jemma River Gorge, Sululta plains , the Rift Valley Lakes, Wondo Guenet Forest, and the magnificent Bale Mountains where more than 10 of these endemic birds are found.  Despite this is a  bird watching tour we will have the opportunity to spot different   endemic mammals.  

Trip highlights

  • Numerous list of birds including  many endemic birds of Ethiopia
  • Many of Ethiopia’s endemic mammals including:  Ethiopian Wolf,
  • Mountain Nyala & Gelada Baboon
  • Breathtaking nature &  landscapes
  • Bale Mountains & Jemma River Gorge
  • The Great Ethiopian Rift Valley Lakes & Wondogenet Forest
  • A chance to explore Ethiopian culture
  • This tour will be lead by our ornithologist.

Day 1: ADDIS ABABA - DEBRE LIBNOS (B-L-D)

After arrival your tour guide will welcome you at the airport. We will have a first Ethiopian coffee and a breakfast before heading towards Debre Libanos. Flocks of Hooded Vultures and Black Kites will be wheeling overhead and we should see Dusky Turtle-dove and the endemic White-collared Pigeon. Dazzling Tacazze Sunbirds, Baglafecht Weavers and Streaky Seedeaters. After break fast this morning we will cross the Sululta Plains. These high-altitude plateau grasslands provide superb birding, despite intensive cultivation.

Resident birds we may find here include Secretary bird, White-backed Vulture, African Hobby, Erckel's Francolin, Red-chested Swallow, Cape Crow, Pectoral-patch Cisticola and African Quail finch. Suddenly, the seemingly endless plain dramatically drops off into the Blue Nile drainage system. Perched on the edge of the gorge is Debre Libanos Monastery, one of Ethiopia's most sacred Christian sites. We will concentrate our search here for Rappel’s Vulture, Verreaux's Eagle, African Hawk-eagle, Augur Buzzard (dark-morph birds are commonly seen here), Lanner Falcon, Nyanza Swift, Hemprich's Hornbill, the three endemics: Rüppell's Chat, White-winged Cliff-chat and White-billed Starling, Mocking Cliff-chat, Yellow-rumped Serin and Cinnamon-breasted Bunting. Another specialty of this area is the Lion-headed Baboon.

Overnight Ethio German Lodge

Day 2: DEBRE LIBANOS-SULULTA

Leaving early morning our objective is to look for the highly-localized endemic Harwood’s Francolin.
That we will spot it dawn by Jemma Gorge. Then the rest of the day explore for terrestrial birding and drive to Sululta town for overnight.

Yaya village resort or back Addis Jupiter Bole Hotel

Day 3: SULULTA-AWASH

This is quite birdy plain, explore morning time, looking for the Endemics; Abyssinian longclaw, Erlanger’s lark, Ethiopian Siskin wattled ibis, Blue winged geese, spot breasted plover. Then head to Awash National park, birding en route.

Overnight Awash Lodge

Day 4: AWASH

Today will be spent exploring the superb Awash National Park. We will bird around the Alleghedi reserve and Doho lodge with its hot springs, the Awash River and Kirayawa Gorge, exploring riverine forests, wetlands, thorn woodlands, savanna grasslands, rocky hills, cliffs and escarpments.

The park boasts a bird list of 460 species and we will make an effort to find, amongst many others, Egyptian Vulture, Greater Spotted Eagle, Scissor-tailed Kite, Shikra, Arabian, Buff-crested, Hartlaub's and White-bellied Bustards, Three-banded Courser, Helmeted Guinea fowl, Small Buttonquail, Eastern Grey Plantain-eater, White-browed Coucal, Plain Nightjar, Northern Carmine Bee-eater, Greater Honeyguide, Wire-tailed Swallow, Red-winged Lark, Singing Bush lark, Blackstar, Red-backed Scrub-Robin, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, Green-backed Camaroptera, Grey-headed Batis, Pale Flycatcher, Slate-colored Boubou, White-rumped Shrike, Somali Fiscal, Nile Valley and Marico Sunbirds, Grey-headed and Sulphur-breasted Bush-shrikes, Fan-tailed Raven, Red-billed Quelea and Red-rumped Waxbill.

Mammals we may see include Aardwolf, Lion, Leopard, Beisa Oryx, Aardvark, Soemmering-s Gazelle, Hamadryas Baboon, Abyssinian Hare, African Wild Cat, Black-backed Jackal, Spotted Hyena and Greater and Lesser Kudu. We will also take a night drive to look for the more elusive nocturnal species.

Overnight Awash Falls Lodge.

Day 5: AWASH-LANGANO

We will depart early and head south, towards the Great Rift Valley lakes and making our first birding stop around lake Beseka crater, then at the artificial lake Koka. Lunch and birding stop at lake Ziway where the surrounding lake teem with birds and we will look for flocks of approachable Black-winged Lovebirds, Blue-breasted Bee-eater, white faced whistling ducks, hottentot teals, great white pelican, black heron, Black-billed Barbet, Rufous-necked Wryneck, African Yellow Warbler, Rüppell’s Robin-chat, Black-headed Batis, Beautiful Sunbird and Rüppell’s Weaver.

We will also visit Koka Dam and lake Ziway. Here we will search for Pink-backed and Great White Pelicans, Intermediate Egret, African Darter, Goliath Heron, Hamerkop, Yellow-billed and Saddle-billed Storks, Spur-winged and Egyptian Geese, Comb Duck, African Pygmy-goose, African Fish-eagle, Black Crowned Crane, African and Lesser Jacanas, Senegal Thick-knee, Spur-winged Lapwing, Pied and Malachite Kingfishers and Winding Cisticola. After lunch we proceed lake Langano to our lodge.

Overnight: Bihsangari Lodge

Day 6: LANGANO

Explore the whole day the Eco-lodge ground; for sulfur breasted bush shrike,
Northern puff back, black shrike, yellow shouldered shrike, common red start, slender tailed night jar, Senegal thick knees, Abyssinian ground trush etc.

Overnight, at Lake Langano

Day 7: LANGANO-BALE

In the morning we head towards the world-famous Bale Mountains National Park. At the park headquarters in Dinsho we will search for Chestnut-napped Francolin, Ground scraper Thrush (endemic race simensis), Abyssinian Ground-thrush, Abyssinian Catbird and the endemic White-backed Black-tit. We also hope to see a variety of mammals including Mountain Nyala, Menelik Bushbuck and Desert Warthog.

Overnight Goba Shebele hotel.

Day 8: BALE (SENETTIE PLATEAU) HARENNA FOREST

We will drive up the Bale Mountain massif onto the Senetti Plateau, which lies between 3800m and 4377m above sea level. As we ascend, we will enter a Tid, or Juniper forest zone, and here we will search for African Goshawk, Rufous-chested Sparrow hawk, African Hill Babbler, the very-localized Abyssinian Woodpecker, Cinnamon Bracken-warbler, Montane White-eye and Yellow-bellied Waxbill. Once we reach this unique plateau we will be driving on Africa’s highest road, passing close to the summit of Ethiopia’s second highest mountain. This habitat is termed 'Afro-alpine moorland' and is characterized by Jibrra, or Giant Lobelias, which tower over the rich tussock grasslands. This site is an Important Bird Area of immense significance, supporting seven globally-threatened species and nearly all of Ethiopia’s highland biome species.

If we are very fortunate we will see a pair of endangered Wattled Cranes striding through the moist grassland, or spot a Cape Eagle-owl sunning on a rocky perch. We will also search for Black Stork, Wattled Ibis, Lammergeyer, Chestnut-naped and Moorland Francolins, the endemic Rouget's Rail, Spot-breasted Lapwing, Thekla Lark, Red-throated Pipit, Red-breasted Wheatear and Moorland Chat. The grasslands are estimated to support an amazing biomass of 4000kg of rodents per hectare.

This obviously attracts raptors, and we should see Steppe and Golden Eagles and Pallid Harriers courting over this green sea. They share this abundant food source with the plateau's most celebrated resident, the Ethiopian, or Simien, Wolf, the world's rarest canid. Finally, we will reach the escarpment of this elevated plateau and stare down through the clouds at the vast Harenna Forest below. This is the largest intact forest block in Ethiopia and the largest protected Afro-alpine forest on the continent. It still supports populations of Lion and the only surviving forest-dwelling African Wild Dogs. Here, we will search for the uncommon Mountain Buzzard, Rameron Pigeon, Lemon and Tambourine Doves, African Emerald Cuckoo, Narina Trogon, Brown Woodland-warbler (a subspecies endemic to this National Park), Abyssinian Crimson-wing, the virtually-endemic African Citril and Cape Canary. In the afternoon, we will return across the Senetti Plateau to Goba.

Overnight Goba Shebele hotel.

Day 9: BALE-AWASSA

Today we descend 1500m to enjoy some dry warmth central rift valley.
Dropping dawn from Bale Mountains, here we will be exploring for the aquatic species along Lake Awassa.

Overnight United Africa hotel.

Day 10: AWASA-ADDIS ABABA

This morning we scan the ground of United Africa hotel, for spotted creeper, both red throated and Eurasian wryneck, African pigmy goose, white backed duck, blue headed coucal and we take a short drive to a fish market on the shore of Lake Awassa and spitting many waders. Then drive Addis on the way birding and get back Addis in the old defrosting up at the Jupiter hotel then in the evening transfer to the airport.

 

Ethiopia Nature & Wildlife Tours

Explore Ethiopia’s endemic wildlife & amazing nature

Ethiopia is a land of natural contrasts, from the tops of the rugged Simien Mountains (4620M), the third highest mountain in Africa, to the depths of the Danakil Depression, at 120 meters below sea level one of the lowest dry land points on earth. The wealth of natural beauty that blesses Ethiopia offers an astonishing variety of landscapes & wildlife. Afro-Alpine highlands soaring to around 4,620 meters, moors and mountains, the splendor of the Great Rift Valley, white-water rivers, Savannah teeming with game, giant waterfalls, dense and lush jungle... the list is endless.

With 14 major wildlife reserves, Ethiopia provides a microcosm of the entire sub-Saharan ecosystem. Birdlife here is abundant, and there are many endemic mammals from the rare Walia Ibex to the Ethiopian Wolf, from the Mountain Nyala to the Gelada Baboon and to the shy Wild Ass, roam free just as nature intended. These offer an amazing opportunities for nature & wildlife travel unparalleled in Africa.Our nature & wildlife tour packages are designed to help you explore and enjoy these amazing nature with our nature & wildlife expert tour guides.

SIMIEN MOUNTAIN

The Simien Mountains present the most dramatic mountain scenery in Africa: Great volcanic plugs, formed some 40 million years a go and eroded over the aeons into fantastic crags, pinnacles and flat topped mountains,

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BALE MOUNTAIN

This trek takes you in the largest Afro Alpine habitant in the whole of Africa. Bale Mountains National Park covers the largest Afro alpine habitat in the whole of Africa.

 

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DALLOL DEPRESSION EXPEDITION WITH TIGRAY ROCK-HEWN CHURCHES

On this expedition, you will have a lava trek to visit one of few most permanent lava lakes on the planet, Erta Ale. You will also have the chance to witness an ancient tradition of extracting salt from the salt fields and transporting the salt bars with endless lines of camel caravan for days from the depression to the highland towns. This adventure tour is truly a trip of a life time!

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BIRDING TOUR

Ethiopia’s greatly diversified ecosystem makes it one of the richest habitats in Africa for birds and mammals. With more than 860 bird specious of birds, Ethiopia possesses about 10% of the world’s bird specious and about 40% of the African birds are found here. Among these 16 specious of birds are only found in Ethiopia, not anywhere else. That is the reason why we say, Ethiopia is a must for bird enthusiasts.

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WILDLIFE HOILDAY IN ETHIOPIA

Ethiopia is a land of natural contrasts, from the tops of the rugged Simien Mountains (4620M), the third highest mountain in Africa, to the depths of the Danakil Depression, at 120 meters below sea level one of the lowest dry land points on earth. The wealth of natural beauty that blesses Ethiopia offers an astonishing variety of landscapes & wildlife. Afro-Alpine highlands soaring to around 4,620 meters, moors and mountains, the splendor of the Great Rift Valley, white-water rivers, Savannah teeming with game, giant waterfalls, dense and lush jungle... the list is endless.

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Travel to Ethiopia with the local Cultural Tour & Adventure Travel Specialists

Planning to travel to Ethiopia? Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours has been delivering a unique & enjoyable travel experience throughout Ethiopia for more than 14 years.

At Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours we specialize in small group departure package tours & tailor-made tours. We have wide selection of tours from cultural tour to Ethiopia’s Historic Route to nature & wildlife tour to the Simien Bale Mountains. From photographic expedition to the remote tribes of the Omo Valley to a unique adventure of a life time to the Denakil-Dallol Depression and Ertale Lava Lake. From mountain trekking holiday to the Simien Mountains to bird watching tour in the Bale Mountains & Awash National Park & so much more.

Remember, all our tours are well crafted by our specialist tour operators and lead by expert tour guides. We appreciate the trust you put in us when it comes to planning your precious holiday.

Fixed Small Group Departures

Why travel to Ethiopia with Grand Holidays?

     Get close to culture & nature

  • Witness and explore an ancient African civilization & undiluted living ancient culture
  • Mingle with the friendly & charming Ethiopian people
  • Meet with the remote tribes of the Omo Valley &  the people in the Simien Mountains & more 
  • Test some of the most delicious &  varied Ethiopian dishes
  • Discover some of the most beautiful nature & magnificent landscapes

           Small  group size

  • Our average group size 8-12 PAX . Enjoy a small group tour.
  • All our tours are lead by passionate and knowledgeable tour guides 
  • our travel experts always come up with flexible & innovative itineraries

Personalized tours & expertise

  • We are always here to serve you, whether it is a private tailor made holidays, family adventure or group tours.
  • Our team of dedicated travel experts & expedition leaders in the office are always ready to help you choose a unique holiday to Ethiopia that is right for you.

Unique experiences

  • Travel with our expert local guides to get to know Ethiopia really well
  • Have a unique local experience and get close to people and nature
  • Witness some of the most colorful festivals, tribal rituals  & cultural activities
  • Relax in some of the best lodges & hotels in Ethiopia

 

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