It’s not often that most avid travelers return to a country more than once, especially in a single year. There’s just too much other stuff to see in the world so they simply enjoy their time in one country and check it off their list for good. Ethiopia, however, is one of those countries that can be the exception. It is a destination wrapped in mystery, even though it is renowned for its rich history, unique culture, and breathtaking natural beauty. Ethiopia is so full of things to do and incredible sights to discover that you’ll definitely consider paying a second (or third) visit.
While it is fun to tour the country on your own, you should note that even though tourism here has steadily been on the rise in recent years, there are some top places where you’ll definitely need the services of an Ethiopia Travel Agency. These include:
Simien Mountains National Park
Situated in the Semien (North) Gondar Zone of the Amhara Region, the Simien Mountains National Park is a UNESCO natural World Heritage Site and has been managed since 1944 even though it was formally established in 1966. It is hands down one of Africa’s most beautiful ranges, boasting massive plateaus, astounding gullies and pinnacles, all of which offer tough but immensely rewarding trekking and wildlife viewing adventures. Among other wildlife here, you can come across groups of Gelada monkeys, watch magnificent Walia ibex joust on precarious rock ledges, and even spot the endemic rare Ethiopian fox. The park itself has three general botanical regions — the cultivated and grazed lower slopes, the forested alpine regions ( up to 3600m), and the mountain grasslands of the higher lands, so expect a lot of scenic backgrounds and amazing photo opportunities.
The Lower Omo Valley
For many travelers, the majesty of northern Ethiopia’s historical circuit is the main reason they visit the country. But if there’s anything in southern Ethiopia that can rival these iconic destinations, it’s the fierce and fascinating people of the Lower Omo Valley. If visiting an Ethiopian tribe is part of your travel plans, then there’s no better place to be. Here you will find some of Africa’s most fascinating ethnic groups and encounter a culture that is markedly different from your own. Whether it’s watching the Hamar people performing their famous bull-jumping ceremony, wandering through traditional Daasanach villages, or marveling at mind-blowing lip plates of the Mursi tribe, your visit here is sure to stick with you for all time. The region is quite beautiful too with a diverse landscape that boasts open savannah plains, forests, high hills and enchanting rivers.
Gambela National Park
Home to some of Ethiopia’s greatest wildlife populations, Gambela National Park is said to have wildlife numbers that can rival even the famous reserves and national parks of neighboring East African countries, Kenya and Tanzania. In addition to the wildlife, you also get to traverse beautiful savannahs, flood plains, and riverine forests. If you do decide to head out here, however, you should keep in mind that you’ll need a local guide and a reliable 4WD as the animals are thought to be concentrated in the swampiest and hardest-to-reach areas of the park. You’ll also need to be self-sufficient in terms of food, water, and camping equipment. That’s why it makes sense to book this trip with a trusted tour operator so that they can handle these logistics prior to your arrival.
Located on the border between Ethiopia and Eritrea and lying over 100m below sea level, the Danakil Depression is officially one of the lowest, driest, and hottest places on the planet. As one of the most surreal and harsh places on the planet, the Danakil doesn’t feel like part of the earth at all with its bubbling volcanoes and sulfurous yellow mounds. Temperatures here tend to soar so high that hikes are usually done at night or in the early morning. If you are looking for a genuine, raw adventure in Ethiopia, then this is the place to be. That said, be sure to come prepared with enough water, first-aid kit, torchlights, and any other necessary supplies.
Some travelers are not too fond of booking their trips with a travel agency, but here in Ethiopia, it really is a wise decision to do so. In addition to smoothing out your travel itinerary, it really helps you travel with ease and convenience. There are even instances where it’s almost impossible to get to places without a tour or guide, such as the Lake Tana Monasteries or the Tigray churches. Planning to visit Ethiopia? Get in touch with us today and we’ll be happy to help ensure it is a memorable trip!