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Addis Ababa City Tour

Addis Ababa ("New flower" in amharic) is the third highest capital in the world with an altitude of 2,400 m. Founded in 1887 by Emperor Menelik II, it is also known as the capital of Africa for hosting multiple international institutions such as the African Union Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. Multicultural and full of authentic places, Addis is constantly growing and becoming one of the most vibrant places in Africa.

Inside Ethiopia Tours offers a full day city tour through the main attractions of Addis Ababa starting with a visit to the Entoto Mountain, where the city was first established, the Etnographic Museum,   the perfect introduction to the Ethiopian culture and lifestyles, the National Museum, home to ancient fossils, the Trinity Cathedral, where Haile Selassie’s is buried and Merkato, the largest open market in Africa. We also offer half day city tours for those with limited time in the capital city.

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One day excursions from Addis Ababa

Debre Libanos and the Blue Nile Gorge

Drive 110 kilometres north of Addis Ababa over the Entoto Mountains passing through the Sululta Plains to the Monastery of Debre Libanos, found in the 13th century by Abune Tekle Haymanot. Overlooking the Jemma River Gorge, a tributary of the Blue Nile, this monastery owns ecclesiastical, cultural and historical relics, and boasts a rare grove of trees that have disappeared from elsewhere in the region. On the way you can also visit the 16th century bridge that is still used today and believed to have been built by the Portuguese. Drive back to Addis Ababa in the late afternoon.

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Wonchi Crater Lake

This one-day trip will take you to the wonderful Wenchi Crater Lake (3,000 m altitude), located around 150km east of Addis Ababa. Drive west via Ambo and reach the crater where you will have the choice of descending by foot or on horseback. After reaching the lake, you can take a small boat to the island of Cherkos where there is an old Ethiopian Orthodox church. Return to Addis later in the afternoon via Woliso.

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Adadi Mariam rock-hewn church and Tiya

Drive southwest of Addis Ababa to visit some archeological sites as well as the intact rock-hewn church of Adadi Mariam. At the prehistoric site of Melka Kuntare, you have the chance to witness the long history of our species’ ancestors. Proceed to visit the stelae of Tiya from the 14th century and listed as one of Ethiopian’s nine UNESCO World Heritage sites. Drive back to Addis Ababa in the late afternoon.

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Debre Zeigt

Drive 50km south of Addis Ababa to Debre Zeigt, also known as Bishoftu, home to some crater lakes where you can enjoy the day with some hiking. This area is also popular for birdwatching and there are several resorts on the lake side offering lunch and spa services. Near to Debre Zeigt, you can visit Mount Zuqualla, an extinct volcano with stunning views of the surrounding areas. You can also visit the Mount Zuqualla Maryam monastery dated from the 4th century. Drive back to Addis Ababa in the late afternoon.

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Menagesha National forest

Drive west to Menagesha National Forest where you will spend the day hiking surrounded by some Ethiopian wildlife such as the colombus monkes, the Menelik’s bushbuc and some bird species like the Ethiopian oriole and the Abyssinian woodpecker. Drive back to Addis Ababa in the late afternoon.

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Short trips from Addis Ababa

If you are in Addis Ababa and need a getaway or if you only have a few days to visit Ethiopia, we have compiled the top destinations from our historical, cultural, and nature and trekking tour packages and converted them into short trips so you can enjoy the best Ethiopia can offer in a shorter and more intense experience. Wether you are interested in knowing the history of Ethiopia or prefer to take a trekking tour in one of our amazing scenarios, we are willing to make your wishes come true so do not hesitate to contact us for more detailed information.

Awassa and the Rift Valley Lakes (by car)

Day 1 Drive to Awassa via Ziway. After lunch, take a boat trip on the Awassa Lake and visit the fish market and the surroundings. Overnight in Awassa (hotel)

Day 2 In the morning, drive to the Rift Valley Lakes and stop at the Abiatta and Shalla National Park. Drive to one of the resorts by the Lake Langano for lunch and enjoy the rest of the afternoon on the beach. Overnight in Langano (resort or camping)

Day 3 After breakfast, drive back to Addis Ababa via Debre Zeigt where you will have lunch in one of the restaurants on the lake side. End of the tour

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Lalibela (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Lalibela early in the morning and visit the enclosure with the eleven rock-hewn churches awarded as World Heritage Site by the UNESCO. If Saturday, visit the local market, one of the most colorful in the whole country. End your day with a dinner while enjoying a stunning sunset over the mountains. Overnight in Lalibela (lodge or hotel)

Day 2 Fly back to Addis Ababa. End of the tour

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Harar (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Dire Dawa and drive to Harar with time to visit Arthur Rimbaud’s house during the 19th century and see the singular spectacle of the hyena-man in the evening. Overnight in Harar (hotel or harare pension)

Day 2 In the morning, walk around the 16th century walled city of Harar with a visit to the colourful Islamic market and continue the tour with the National and Harari museums and the house of Haile Selassie’s father: Ras Mekonnen. In the afternoon drive back to Dire Dawa to fly to Addis Ababa. End of the tour

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Bahir Dar and Lalibela (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Bahir Dar early in the morning. Boat trip on Lake Tana to visit the monasteries at the Zege Peninsula and the Kibran Gabriel church and drive outside to the Blue Nile Falls for an afternoon hike. Overnight in Bahir Dar (hotel)

Day 2 Fly to Lalibela and visit the rock-hewn churches, a UNESCO World Heritage site. End your day with a dinner while enjoying a stunning sunset over the mountains. Overnight in Lalibela (hotel)

Day 3 Fly back to Addis Ababa. End of the tour

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Tigray rock-hewn churches (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Mekele and drive to Hawzien. In the afternoon, visit one of the main churches in the Geralta Region: Abuna Yemata Guh. Overnight in Hawzien (lodge or hotel)

Day 2 In the morning, trek to Debre Mariam Korkor and Daniel Korkor rock-hewn churches and drive back to Mekele to fly to Addis Ababa in the evening.  End of the tour 

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The Danakil Depression (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Mekele and drive to Ahmedela, passing through the small town of Berhale where the camels stop before they proceed to the northern highlands. Overnight camping in Ahmedela

Day 2 In the early morning, drive to Ragad, the place where the local tribe, the Afar, are mining, breaking the salt from the ground, cutting it into rectangular pieces and loading it on the camels. Continue driving ahead to Dallol (116 meter below sea level), one of the lowest places in the world. Drive back to Mekele to fly back to Addis Ababa in the evening.End of the tour

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Simien Mountains National Park (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Gondar and drive directly to the Simien Mountains National Park via Debark, where we will obtain all the trekking permits and the required scout. Start trekking from Buytras (Simien Lodge) to Sankaber (3-4 hours). During the walk there’s a good chance of seeing your first Gelada baboons. Overnight in Sankaber (lodge or camping)

Day 2 In the morning, trek to Geech (5-7hours) via the spectacular Jinbar waterfall. After descending down to the Jinbar Wenz (which feeds the waterfall) a short ascent remains to Geech village where the campsite is (3,600m) with great views of the mountains surrounded by giant lobelia plants. The nearby Kedadit summit provides one of the best places to see the sunset. Overnight in Geech (camping)

Day 3 Trek to Ambaras via Imet Gogo promontory for one of the most spectacular views in the whole mountain range. This is a great place to see the magnificent Lammergeir vultures. From Imet Gogo trek back to the road (4-5 hours) near Ambaras village to meet the car for the drive to Gondar to take the evening flight to Addis Ababa. End of the tour      

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Arba Minch and the Nechisar National Park (by flight)

Day 1 Fly to Arba Minch in the morning and visit the Nechisar National Park with a boat trip on the lake Chamo to see crocodiles, hippopotamus and abundant bird species. Overnight in Arba Minch (lodge or hotel)

Day 2 In the morning, visit the Dorze village, known for the beehive-shaped bamboo houses and the fine cotton weaved by their people. Fly back to Addis Ababa in the afternoon. End of the tour

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Wonchi Crater Lake (by car)

Day 1 Drive to Wenchi Crater Lake (3,000 m altitude) to enjoy a lovely day of trekking with the choice of riding a horse or taking a boat to the island of Cherkos, where there is an old Ethiopian Orthodox church. In the afternoon, drive to Woliso for overnight

Day 2 After lunch, drive back to Addis Ababa. End of the tour

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 Note that all itineraries are flexible and they can be modified or combined with other itineraries according to your interest, time and budget.
Please contact us for further information.