Tour Overview

Tour Code:                AETT-EC 01

Duration:                   15 days and 14 night

Tour Title:                  Combined Ethiopia North and South

Transportation:         Surface and Flight

Tour Itinerary

 Day1.  Depart on early flight to Bahir Dar and transfer to hotel. After check in, take a boat trip on Lake Tana to visit a selection of the monasteries hidden on the islands including Zege Penninsula, Azuwa Maryam and Ura Kidane Mehret church with the outlet of the Blue Nile River.  In the afternoon, drive about 32kms to the Blue Nile Falls for a visit of the magnificent fall of Blue Nile locally known “TIS ISSAT” literally means the smoke of a fire.  Overnight in Hotel

Day2.  After breakfast, drive to Gondar through rural villages, offering wonderful insight into the Amhara culture.  After check in your hotel, explore the sites of Gondar, including a visit to the Royal Enclosure, with six castles and several other buildings.  Continue to visit, the Fasilidas’s Pool which has a size larger than the international swimming pool and the Debre Birhan Selassie church, with the most famous FRESCOE ceiling in Ethiopia. Overnight in Hotel

Day3.  Board on short flight to Axum and be transferred to your hotel.  Today you will have a full day visit to the sites of Axum and the archeological museum, the Queen of Sheba’s palace, Ezana’s inscription, King Kaleb & G/Meskel’s tomb.  Afternoon continue to visit the St. Mary of Zion church, where the Ark of the Covenant is kept.  Overnight in Hotel

Day4.  Take morning flight to Lalibela, which is often terms as 8th world wonders.  After lunch, start your tour of the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, visiting the Northwestern Cluster of churches – Bet Medhane Alem, Bet Maryam, Bet Meskel, Bet Danaghel, Bet Mikael & Bet Golgotha (entry not permitted for women).    Overnight in Hotel

Day5.  In the morning, take a trip to visit the church of Yimrehanne Kristos.  The most popular of the churches found outside Lalibela town.  After the visit, return to Lalibela for lunch and, in the afternoon, visit the Southeastern Cluster of churches – Bet Gabriel-Rafael, Bet Merkorios, Bet Amanual, and Bet Abba Libanos.  Finally, you will visit the most famous of all the churches – Bet Giyorgis.   Overnight in Hotel

Day6.  In the morning, proceed to the airport for the return flight back to Addis Ababa and after lunch in one of the restaurants in Addis Ababa; then leave Addis Ababa and drive to the southern Ethiopia.  On the way, brief stop at Lake Ziway to visit the vibrant birdlife.  Overnight Hawassa in Hotel

Day7.  In the morning after breakfast, visit the fish market on the shores of Lake Awassa and then proceed driving to Dorze and before check in to your hotel, visit Dorze village situated in the highlands, 2900masl.  The Dorze people are known for their tall beehive-like houses and their fine cotton weaving.  Overnight, Dorze in traditional Dorze hut or continue to Arbaminch for overnight stay in Hotel or Lodge

Day8.  In the morning, visit the local market in Dorze (Monday and Thursday) or Chencha (Tuesday and Saturday).  Then, continue driving to Arba Minch.  In the afternoon, take a boat trip on Lake Chamo to visit the “crocodile market” and the local hippos. Overnight in Arba Minch Hotel or Lodge

Day9.  After breakfast, leave Arba Minch and drive to Turmi. Enroute visit Weyto village, which is home to the Tsemai tribe.  Continue driving through the Weyto Valley to Erbore, where you will have a brief visit to a local Erbore village.  Finally, proceed to Turmi village, home of the Hamer tribe.  At night, you can see the traditional night dancing of the Hamer tribe, known as “EVANGADI”.  Overnight in Turmi (Camping, Local Hotel or Lodge)

Day10.  In the morning, drive about 70kms and take a half day trip to Omorate to visit the Dassenech tribe.  Here you will cross the Omo River by local boat and enter a Dassenech village.  Afterwards, return to Turmi for a visit to a local Hamer village.  If there is traditional Bulls Jumping ceremony of the Hamer tribe (coming-of-age ceremony), you will attend the ceremony which is allowed for visitors. Overnight in Turmi (Camping, Local Hotel or Lodge)

Day11.  Leave for Jinka, via Dimeka and Key Afar villages.  Tuesday and Saturday are market days in Dimeka, which is one of the most colorful markets in the area and is attended by many tribes, including Hamer, Benna and Karo.  Then proceed to Jinka.  Overnight in Jinka ( Hotel or Lodge)

Day12.  After breakfast, drive through the Mago National Park to a local village of the Mursi tribe.  The Mursi are known for their lower lip and earlobe plates.  Drive back to Jinka and in the afternoon, visit the South Omo Museum & Research Center to learn more about the local tribes.  Alternatively, take a hike in the surrounding hills to visit a local Ari village.  Overnight in Jinka ( Hotel or Lodge)

Day13.  After breakfast, drive to Konso, via Key Afar.  If the day is Thursday it is a market day at popular Key Afar village, where you will get a chance to see the Benna and Tsemai tribes while attending the market.  The Konso people are known for their wooden statues/“totems”, known as wakas, which are erected in honor of dead heroes, as well as their innovative agricultural terracing.  This day will have the opportunity to visit a local village and the cultural museum displaying many waka statues.  If time allows, you can also visit the “Natural New York Village”, named after the tall sand formations resembling skyscrapers of New York.  Overnight in Konso ( Lodge or local Hotel)

Day14.  After breakfast, leave Konso and drive to Lake Langano.  On the way you will visit the Senqele Wildlife Sanctuary, which was established to protect the endemic Swayne’s Hartebeest.  Continue driving to Lake Langano for overnight stay (Resort or Lodge)

Day15.  After a morning swim in the lake, drive to Addis Ababa.  Enroute visit the Abijata-Shala National Park, where you will get a chance to visit ostrich farm and thousands of flamingos seen at various times of the year. In the evening, enjoy a fair-well dinner at one of the traditional restaurant and depart to your home.

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