Ethiopian Airlines has started a new flight connection to Awassa, a city located 270 km south of Addis Ababa. This new service is available on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays with a forty minutes flight. The departure time from Addis is 12:10 arriving to Awassa at 12:50. The flight back to Addis Ababa leaves Awassa at 13:20 arriving to Addis at 14:00 and the price is ETB3,258 or cheaper for the locals and those travellers whose international flight ticket has been purchased with Ethiopian Airlines. For more information please visit their website.
Great news for the inhabitants of the largest city in the Ethiopian Rift Valley, with a population of 258,800 according to the 2007 census, and also for the Ethiopian tourism industry. Thanks to this new flight connection to Awassa, tourists will be able to reach this lakeside city, capital of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s Region since 1994, in less than one hour for a perfect getaway from Addis Ababa.
WHAT TO VISIT IN AWASSA AND THE SURROUNDINGS
The main attraction of this city is the Awassa lake and though the smallest in the Ethiopian Rift Valley, it is set in a former volcano caldera of 9,000ha supporting a rich variety of fish. It is also possible to spot hippos but only with a boat trip on the lake. Thus, a must visit in Awassa is the fishing market (entrance fee ETB20), where you can see the local fishermen surrounded by waterbirds and marabou storks trying to get fish scraps. And if you get hungry, both cooked and raw fish are served in the nearby stands. A walk by the adyacent park is highly recommended since it hosts ancient trees where different monkeys species will definitely make you smile. Also, market day is celebrated on Mondays and Thursdays at the city center.
Kidus Gabriel, the Orthodox church of the Archangel Gabriel is also one of the main attractions of the city. And if you are interested in the Rastafari culture, you can pay a visit to the neighbour town of Shashemene, 25 km north of Awassa. This town hosts the Jamaica Rastafarian Community, created by Haile Selassie’s followers during the final years of the emperor’s reign. The Black Lion Museum is the main attraction if you are interested in this community Rastafarian roots.
BIRD WATCHING SPOT
Birdwatchers will definitely enjoy a day by the dyke of the lake, from where it is possible to spot different endemic bird species such as the black-winged lovebird, the yellow-fronted parrot, the banded barbet or the Ethiopian oriole. Pygmy gooses, fish eagles, blue-headed coucals, white-romped babblers and a variety of storks, terns, prowlers and herons are also to be seen in the dyke’s surroundings or along the shore.
JOIN US ON A TOUR TO AWASSA AND THE GREAT RIFT VALLEY LAKES
Whether you want to do a short trip or you prefer to start the Omo Valley or the bird watching tour in this marvellous city, Inside Ethiopia Tours will be delighted to take care of everything so you can enjoy your stay in Awassa and its surroundings. For further information please contact us.