ET2 Ethiopia Tour

Historic North & the Omo Valley


Churches of Lalibela; Colourful festivals; Spectacular Simien Mountain scenery; Axum Stellae Park; Tribal south, kaleidoscope of cultures; Christian churches, gilded monasteries; Traditional villages, Rift Valley


Dates & Prices

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Prices below are per person, twin-sharing costs in US Dollars (USD). Pricing does not include airfare to/from the tour and any applicable taxes. For single supplement rates and taxes (if any), please refer to the entries under the blue box below.

Start DateEnd DatePriceMore Info
Fri 10 Jan 2020Fri 31 Jan 2020 $6590 USD
Tue 24 Nov 2020Tue 15 Dec 2020 $6360 USD
Sat 09 Jan 2021Sat 30 Jan 2021 $6590 USD
Wed 24 Nov 2021Wed 15 Dec 2021 $6360 USD

Optional Single Supplement: $1328 USD (number of singles limited).
This tour may require a mandatory single supplement charge of $664 if you join our share program and we are unable to pair you.

Tour Overview

An ancient land of stunning sceneries, fascinating cultures and first-rate historic sites, Ethiopia numbers among Africa's most rewarding tour destinations.

As we learn about the country's long history with visits to castles built by various emperors over a 236-year timeframe, 11th century rock-hewn churches, pre-Christian buildings, ancient monuments and royal palaces, we travel through stunning sceneries of mist-shrouded mountain peaks and idyllic cascading waterfalls.

Our cultural exploration of this special destination includes spending time in villages isolated from the rest of the world in which fisherman still use papyrus boats, in local marketplaces where Ari women wear traditional skirts made of tree twigs and at tribal gatherings wherein stick-fighting contests, elaborate dress, lip plates and earlobe discs are commonplace.

This Ethiopia tour offers a cultural experience like no other.

Regions visited: East Africa
Countries visited: Ethiopia


(Manalapan, NJ, US)

We particularly enjoyed Lalibela and peoples in the south. The local guides were excellent; informative and spoke English very well. Our tour leader was friendly, helpful, knowledgeable, enthusiastic. One of the best tour directors we have ever had.

(Saint Louis, MO, US)

The excursions I enjoyed most were ALL of them. All local guides were excellent. The Toyota Land Cruisers were wonderful. I did not expect the air conditioning, but it was wonderful to have. Chris, our tour leader, was always!!!!! so enthusiastic and positive. He was extremely well organized and his knowledge was wonderful. AA have a real gem in having Chris on your staff. He is amazing in his enthusiasm and knowledge of Ethiopia. His love of the country and people is so evident and so very contagious.

(Toronto, CA)

Ethiopia provides a fabulous variety of scenery / landscape, history, world class ancient sites and fascinating peoples. AA has been touring here multiple times per year for a long time and the experience shows - not just the great tour leader but also the choice of local agent, transportation, hotels, local guides and specific sites visited. Visits to a few private homes, not on the itinerary, were a big bonus. I was very happy with my choice of the September departure with Meskel, better weather and uncrowded hotels and sites rather than the peak time Timkat tours.

(Calgary, CA)

WOW, Great, EXCELLENT, Above and beyond! Lorna (tour leader)clearly loves her job and is fabulous, professional and a wonderful person. WOW the transportation exceeded my expectation by a long shot....our drivers were professional and very good at what they do. Medexa our main driver deserves special credit for being the lead driver and really just a very genuine soft spoken person who took his job seriously and cleaned the vehicles every night. Each day the cars were free of dust and the windows and vehicle sparkling!

(Denville, NJ, US)

My initial reason for going to Ethiopia was to see the tribes in the south. So glad I was able to experience the Timket Festival in Lalibela. The whole trip to the north was amazing. I loved the blue Nile Falls outside of Bahir Dar. The National Park in the Simien Mountains was a highlight....Gelada monkeys everywhere....On the way to Mekelle, we stopped to visit a family. We were able to see the interior of the house....we watched the wife grind the tiff got a chance to try grinding with this heavy stone (very difficult)...a great experience. The ceremonial baptism in Lalibela at to be missed. The Timket Festival was something I will never forget....the pagentry, the color, the faces of the priests, etc. The south of Ethiopia was everything I hoped it would be....stepping into National Geographic. There were no excursions I didn't enjoy. Mulay, our guide in the North and Tedy, our guide in the south were both EXCEPTIONAL. I feel very fortunate to have had these intelligent, kind, caring, funny guides with us. The Toyota Land Rovers were great. We had great meals. Adventures Abroad is so fortunate to have Chris Tripodi as a tour leader. He is calm, kind, funny, considerate, air, truthful, always watchful of peoples facial expressions, respectful of the group and the people we are visiting, always thinking ahead. Adventures Abroad is so lucky to have Chris Tripodi on staff. Not only is he all of the above, he is a WONDERFUL human AMBASSADOR OF THE WORLD. I am so lucky to have shared this Ethiopian experience with him. Wonderful tour. I have traveled with AA to West Africa (Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso) and Ethiopia. I will travel with them again because of their incredible tour leaders.

(West Vancouver, BC, CA)

Timkat Festival, churches, tribes, castles, country side drives. Vehicles and drivers were excellent. The trip was amazing. We saw things we never dreamed of.

(Eugene, OR, 1)

We particularly enjoyed the South Omo tribal people, animal life, Lalibella churches, monasteries on Lake Tana. The drivers exceeded all expectations. Courteous and polite, outstanding driving skill, spotless cars, personable. The meal plan exceeded our expectations. Our tour leader was excellent and I'd do another trip with her as leader anytime.

(Bay Harbour Islands, FL, US)

Lorna was extremely knowlegeable and enjoyed imparting her understanding and respect for other cultures to the group. She is an excellent example of imparting not only tolerance but good will and appreciation of others.

(Basking Ridge, NJ, US)

I liked all the excursions. Wow, our tour leader was so knowledgeable about the culture of both the Christian majority and the tribal peoples. I learned a lot from her. I'd be happy to see her in future travels. The hotels were very good. Great tour. Learned a lot.

(Richond, BC, CA)

This was my first ever tour. It was excellent; the tour, the party and the country and its people. The lead driver/guide was utterly outstanding, and acted as a co-guide. His local knowledge, work and personality got access to villages and families, and helped...enhance the trip and remedy problems.

Full Itinerary

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Day 1 Arrival in Ethiopia
Arrive in Addis Ababa, (2450 m/8,038 ft) Ethiopia's capital city.

THIS IS A TRIP FOR THE ADVENTUROUS. The itinerary has been designed to be as comfortable as possible, but this part of the world is still undeveloped. Accommodation is basic in some places and some road journeys are long, dusty, and rough. This trip is suitable for hardy travellers who do not expect "creature comforts" or things to work smoothly everywhere. Despite the often-rustic conditions, delays, and bumpy roads, this will be a fascinating journey, full of epic moments for the experienced traveller who possesses a sense of humour, flexibility, and a true spirit of adventure.

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Dinner

Day 2 Addis Ababa: City Tour
This morning we tour Addis Ababa, Ethiopia's capital, which translates as "New Flower" in the Amharic language. The city shows little sign of losing its youthful, lusty edge and is the pulsing heart of this eclectic nation's resurgence as one of the world's fastest-growing economies. "Addis," as it's often simply known, is the world's third-highest capital city at 2400 meters (7,880 ft), and has worn its heart on its sleeve since it was founded by Ethiopian Emperor Menelik about 1892.

Although not well-known outside the country, the Ethiopian National Museum is a world-class museum; truly a hidden gem! The most famous exhibit is the replica of Lucy, an early hominid, but the museum offers much more. With Ethiopian civilization being one of the oldest in the world, the artifacts within the museum span thousands of years, including some from its earliest days. During our visit, we'll see a wide variety of artifacts, from sculptures to clothing to artwork, both traditional and modern.

Next is the Ethnological Museum, a fascinating place with exhibits relating to the history and culture of Ethiopia. There are many displays of the various ethnic groups with information about each of their lifestyles. A large amount of ethnic outfits, instruments, tools, and other artifacts accompany each ethnic exhibit, making it one of the most interesting museums in the city.

We also visit the Holy Trinity Cathedral, the second most-important place of worship in Ethiopia and the final resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie.

At some point today we should be able to sample Ethiopia's 'Black Gold'. It's impossible to separate Ethiopian culture -- that unparalleled Ethiopian-ness -- from coffee, and this is the land of the finest Arabica coffee. As legend would have it, it was discovered by an Ethiopian shepherd boy and his goats sometime around the sixth century.

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 3 Addis Ababa - Bahr Dar: Tis Abay (Blue Nile Falls)
Today we fly to Bahr Dar, situated on the shore of Lake Tana in northwestern Ethiopia. Bahar Dar is a small town set on the southeastern shore of Lake Tana (Ethiopia's largest lake), where local fishermen still use papyrus boats, and just 30 km (19 miles) from the spectacular Tissisat Falls.

This afternoon we have an excursion to Tis Abay (Blue Nile Falls), a cascade 45 m (150 feet) high. The locals call it Tisissat, which means "Water that Smokes". The area is also home to a great variety of birds and plants.

Return to Bahr Dar.

Overnight in Bahr Dar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 4 Bahr Dar - Gondar
Today we cross Lake Tana by boat and connect with our land transport at Gorgora and continue by road to Gondar, the former capital of Ethiopia (1818 m / 6,000 ft). This "City of Castles" is one of Ethiopia's most interesting. Set in a beautiful landscape, Gondar is situated at the base of the Simien Mountains. The city's unique imperial precinct contains a dozen castles built by various emperors over a 236-year period.

Overnight in Gondar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 5 Gondar: Town Tour
Today we will acquaint ourselves with the city of Gondar, touring the castle of Emperor Fasiledes, founder of the former capital. The two-story castle with its domed towers was said to be "one of the most marvelous of buildings" by a visiting Yemeni envoy. We will also see the Bathing Palace, once surrounded by a moat of water. Today the moat is only filled with water during Epiphany for an annual baptism celebration.

We will also visit the monasteries of Qusquam and Debre Berhan Selassie. The latter has not only many detailed 16th century frescoes, but also one of Ethiopia's most photographed ceilings, painted with angels' faces.

Overnight in Gondar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 6 Gondar - Simien Mountains
Today we travel by road into the Simien Mountains and the Simien Eco Lodge. The highest point above us, Ras Dashen (4620 m / 15,246 ft above sea level), is Africa's fourth highest peak. Numerous large rivers, including the Blue Nile, drain the highlands from east to west, towards the Nile Basin. From north to south, it's the Omo River, flowing into Lake Turkana. Our overnight location approaches 2800 m / 9,000 ft (the highest point on our tour); not terribly high, but you will notice the thinness of the air and cold at night.

The Simiens stretch for over 40 kilometres with an almost two mile drop into the valley below. Our lodge is near Debarak, an area that is home to endemic animals such as Gelada baboons. Visitors are encouraged to explore the area on foot and learn about various ongoing eco-projects that preserve the fauna and flora and foster the economic development in the region as a whole.

Overnight in Simien National Park.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 7 Simien Mountains - Axum
Today we continue our journey north towards Axum (2202m/7,226 ft). This afternoon you may want to walk through part of the town or relax at our hotel.

Axum (Aksum) was the centre of the (eventual) Christian marine trading power the Aksumite Kingdom, which predated the earliest mentions in Roman era writings (around the time of the birth of Jesus) in good correlation to the expansion of Rome into northern Africa, and later when it developed into the Christian kingdom, was a quasi-ally of Byzantium against the Persian Empire. The historical record is unclear; primary sources are limited mainly to ancient church records.

Overnight in Axum.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 8 Axum: Area Tour
Today we explore the wonders of ancient Axum, beginning with the Stelae Park. Carved completely from blocks of granite, these stelae are truly impressive. Although never erected, the largest stelae -- now broken into several pieces -- measures over 30 m (100 feet) long and dates from Ethiopia's pre-Christian era.

Our tour continues to the Archaeological Museum, and to St Mary of Zion Church. We will see the ruins of the original 4th century church, and view an amazing collection of church relics including crosses and ancient crowns. It is here that we will also see the building that houses Ethiopia's most sacred religious artifact, the supposed Ark of the Covenant.

We will wander through King Ezana's Park. Of particular interest is a tablet inscribed in three languages: Ge'ez, Sabean, and Greek. We will also visit the tomb of King Basen, who ruled Axum at the time of Christ's birth. This afternoon we will visit two sites located outside the modern town of Axum: the Palace of the Queen of Sheba, and King Kaleb's Palace. Both enjoy commanding views of the countryside -- lands that were once part of the powerful Axumite Kingdom.

On our late November departures, we watch the Hidar Zion Day processions and celebrations. This festival is attended by tens of thousands of people from all over Ethiopia, making it one of the most joyous annual pilgrimages in Axum, the "sacred city of the Ethiopians."

Overnight in Axum.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 9 Axum - Yeha - Mekelle
Today we travel to Mekelle, the capital of the province of Tigre, a dry, rocky region.

En route we make a short detour to Yeha and the oldest standing structure in Ethiopia--the Temple of Yeha. This is a tower built in the Sabaean style, and dated through comparison with ancient structures in South Arabia to around 700 BC. Although no radiocarbon dating testing has been performed on samples from site, this date for the Great Tower is supported by local inscriptions. David Phillipson attributes its "excellent preservation" to two factors: the care with which its original builders ensured a level foundation, firmly placed on the uneven bedrock; and to its rededication -- perhaps as early as the sixth century AD -- for use as a Christian church.

Upon arrival in Mekelle, we can view the city's new war memorial, a towering monument reminding us of the many who lost their lives fighting a bitter struggle for a more democratic Ethiopia. According to local historians, Mekelle was founded in the 13th century. Its heyday came later during the late nineteenth century, after Yohannes IV was crowned as King of Kings of Ethiopia, and chose Mekelle as the capital of his realm.

Overnight in Mekelle.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 10 Mekelle - Lalibela
Today, as we travel from one valley to the next, we shall see a great variety of crops growing. Sugarcane, bananas, citrus fruits, wheat, barley, potatoes, and plenty of teff grow on the dry terraced mountainsides and valley floors. Teff, a short-stalked grain, produces the smallest grain in the world. Ethiopians mill it into flour used to make injera, the national bread.

Lalibela is the site of eleven rock-hewn churches dating from the 11th century. Each of the churches is architecturally unique and several are decorated with colourful, well-preserved paintings.

Overnight in Lalibela.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 11 Lalibela
Our January departure coincides with the Timkat Festival in Lalibela, the biggest celebration of the year in Ethiopia, marking the Epiphany every year on the 19th of January. Timkat is celebrated all over Ethiopia, but nowhere is it quite as spectacular as in Lalibela. The festival begins with Timkat Eve and dramatic processions through a night of fasting. Crowds of revelers, all dressed in white, sing and dance in the streets to the beating of drums. Priests, decked out in jewel encrusted velvet and satin robes, carry a replica of Arc of the Covenant known as a talbot in a grand procession through the streets.

On all departures we will visit both the western and eastern group of churches where we will spend time wandering through parts of the village.

Overnight in Lalibela.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 12 Lalibela - Addis Ababa
Today we fly from Lalibela back to Addis Ababa.

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 13 Addis Ababa - Arba Minch
This morning we begin our journey southwards to Arba Minch, the "town of many springs". The passes through a mountainous region and highland plateau covered with banana plantations and bamboo. Arba Minch is situated by lakes Chamo and Abaya, the most southerly of Ethiopia's Rift Valley lakes.

En route we stop at the UNESCO site of Tiya, which features a large collection of stelae. Originally forty-six stelae were erected in the cemetery here between the tenth and fifteenth centuries. Archaeological excavations show that the site contains graves. The stelae have carvings representing swords and various enigmatic signs quite unlike those of other regions. The tradition of erecting megalithic monuments is very ancient in Ethiopia; some date from before our era.

Overnight in Arba Minch (1200m/3,936 ft).

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 14 Arba Minch Area
Today we visit the Dorze tribe,* famed for their bee hive shaped houses and their weaving skills. Weaving is a primary profession for many Dorze. They are also farmers, who prevent soil erosion by ingenious terracing of the mountainsides. Around their huts they have their own little garden with vegetables, spices, tobacco and enset (false-banana or musa ensete).

This afternoon we take a refreshing boat trip on Lake Chamo, home to huge crocodiles, hippos and a variety of birdlife.

* On the southern portion of our program, we will do our best to engage with the local people in a way that is respectful and sensitive to their unique situation. Foreign visitors, while a source of much needed income in local communities, have, in some ways, brought unique problems to these previously isolated and traditional cultures. We lament reports of local communities be "spoiled" or turned into beggars, viewing foreign visitors as "walking cash machines." So, in order for our visits to be mutally beneficial, we ask that you heed the advice of your Tour Leader

Overnight in Arba Minch.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 15 Arba Minch - Jinka
We continue our experience with tribal life with a visit to the Konso. A pagan society, the Konso erect wooden totems replete with phallic symbols over the graves of the dead, and have numerous cults based around the breeding and veneration of serpents. The cornerstone of Konso culture, however, is a highly specialized and successful agricultural economy that, through terracing buttressed with stone, enable these people to extract a productive living from the not-very-fertile hills and valleys that surround them. An excellent day to meet the people, take photographs with them and learn of a culture that has had very little outside influence.

Later afternoon arrival in Jinka, set at the foot of Mago National Park (440m / 1,450 ft).

The Omo Valley (average elevation 200-400m/600-1,320 ft) is a virgin environment where tribal traditions have remained unchanged. The women still dress in elaborately-decorated skins and the men celebrate adulthood with special coloured hair buns. There is a fascinating mix of nomadic and semi-nomadic tribes, from the Bume and Karo to the Bena, Mursi, and Hamar, coexisting in a harsh land that is all but forgotten by the rest of the world.

Overnight in Jinka.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 16 Jinka & Mago National Park
Today's excursion to Mago National Park will include a visit to a Mursi village.

The insertion of wooden and terracotta discs into the ear lobes is a widespread custom with the Mursi. Women also progressively split and stretch their lower lips to make room for similar discs. Though these lip plates may appear bizarre to outsiders, the Mursi regard them as signs of beauty. Generally, the larger the lip plate the more desirable the wearer. At certain seasons, visitors may be lucky to chance on colourful and dramatic traditional ceremonies. Periodically young men of the Mursi and Surma tribes engage in ritual stick fighting. These duels are conducted with the utmost vigour since the winners are much admired by girls. These are people who farm the land and breed livestock; they live in almost complete isolation from the rest of the world.

The Omo Valley, part of the "Great African Rift", is located in the southwestern corner of Ethiopia and shares its borders with Kenya and Sudan. Many anthropologists consider it to be the birthplace of humankind; the entire region has been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list since 1980.

Overnight in Jinka.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 17 Jinka - Dimeka - Turmi
We drive towards Turmi across various villages browsing the different tribes, all with their own unique culture and lifestyle. We visit Dimeka's colourful market and encounter the local people. The Omo Valley is so special because nowhere else in the world are there so many ethnic groups inhabiting such a small area. During the next couple of days you'll encounter numerous peoples, all of whom have their own languages and, for the most part, have few interactions with each other.

Overnight in Turmi.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 18 Turmi Area
Today's excursion involves encounters with various peoples, most notably the Karo.

The most striking thing about Karo people's symbolic and ornamental expressions is the painted body and face decorations. This is an elaborate process, which ranges from fine and elaborate details to rough, but striking paintings traced with the palms or fingers. The most beautiful expression is in the facial and chest paintings that combine white (chalk), black (charcoal), yellow, ochre, and red earth. They often imitate the spotted plumage of a guinea fowl, and Karo women scarify their chests to beautify themselves. The complete scarification of a man's chest indicates that he has killed an enemy or a dangerous animal, and are cut with a knife or razor blade; ash is rubbed in to produce a raised effect. The wearing of a grey and ochre clay hair bun also indicates the killing of either an enemy or a dangerous animal.

We visit a typical Karo settlement with open public meeting grounds and dancing place. The people living here have shelters called shuppa, where they pass the hottest hours of the day playing a board game called Warre.

Overnight in Turmi.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 19 Turmi - Arba Minch
The road crosses soft rolling hills with dark red soil and plentiful crops and woods. This is the territory of the Konso, a composite people, both physically and culturally, with members originally hailing from all the surrounding areas. In terms of physical appearance, the Konso tend to be small and wiry, with high cheekbones and pointed chins. Skin colour ranges from reddish brown to almost black, but is dark brown on average. Konso society is largely agricultural and involves the irrigation and terracing of mountain slopes. Staple crops include sorghum and corn, with cash crops including cotton and coffee. Cattle, sheep, and goats are raised for food and milk.

Overnight at Arba Minch.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 20 Arba Minch - Hawassa
We travel through the Great Rift Valley, a 6000 km fault line that runs from Syria, under the Red Sea, across southern Ethiopia all the way to Mozambique. Our route passes all major lakes that dot the Rift Valley, a fertile land planted with bananas, cereals and tobacco, first inhabited by the Oromo people and then the Sidamo.

We arrive into Hawassa, located on the edge of Lake Awassa. After our arrival we can visit a local village to see how they make a living in the fertile Lake District.

Overnight at Hawassa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 21 Hawassa - Addis Ababa
This morning you have the opportunity for walking in the forest and relaxing at the lodge, nestled between coffee fields and lush vegetation.

We then depart Aregash for Lake Langano, a holiday resort with a splendid beach dotted with acacia trees. After a break for lunch at a local lodge, we continue by road to Addis via Debre Ziet Crater lakes.

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 22 Depart
Departure from Addis Ababa.


Included Meal(s): Breakfast

Tour Map

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.

Hotel List

The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.

Best Western Addis Ababa

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Addis Ababa
Country: Ethiopia

Unfussy rooms in a refined hotel featuring a restaurant, a cafe/bar & a spa, plus free breakfast.

Click here to visit hotel website

Abay Minch Lodge

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Bahir Dar
Country: Ethiopia

Throughout time, the haunting images of East Africa’s myriad landscapes have captured the hearts and souls of most discerning travelers.
... one of the few places on earth where adventure still awaits is Ethiopia. This evocative land of dense forests, mountains, mighty rivers, lakes and abundant wildlife provides a unique backdrop for a truly memorable experience.
Located in the heart of Bahir Dar, a city that is surrounded by the beautiftul Lake Tana, the might Blue Nile River and the wonders of Simien Mountains, Abay Minch Lodge is the perfect place to start your adventurous journey. Our lodge is built on a ground that is rich with nature, abundant vegetation and general exotic feel. It is also a place where you can breath the fresh that flows from the various species of trees all around the compound and hear the melodious sound of birds. Come visit us and let us show you why we feel there is no better place for you start your adventure than Abay Minch Lodge.

Read More.

Click here to visit hotel website

Simien Eco-Lodge

Rating: 2 Star Accommodation2 Star Accommodation
Location: Gonder
Country: Ethiopia

This is one of Ethiopia's only true eco-lodges located in the mountains with spectacular views. The lodge is simple but
... and charming, with traditional architecture and a friendly , laid-back atmosphere.

Read More.

Click here to visit hotel website

Lal Hotel & Spa

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Lalibela
Country: Ethiopia

All rooms are fully air-conditioned and designed with private balcony that offers a panoramic view of the environment. Each room
... spacious and comes with an en-suite bathroom, a flat screen TV, a fridge and tea/coffee making facilities.
Read More.

Click here to visit hotel website

Buska Lodge

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Turmi
Country: Ethiopia

Situated in the heart of Southern Ethiopia in the Omo Valley, Buska Lodge is an unpretentious eco-lodge offering travelers the
... accommodation and meal service in this region

Buska Lodge overlooks the plains of Buska Mountain and has been constructed to blend beautifully in to the natural surroundings.

Buska Lodge offers the rare opportunity to learn about and experience the culture and traditions of the local Hammer community offering a rare glimpse into the cultures of the Omo Valley. The Hammer are famous for their Evangadi dance and “Bull jumping” ceremony where a young man who wants to marry jumps over a line of bulls in order to show that he is worth to the pride’s family. The Hammer share traditions and rituals with surrounding people like the Tsemai, Ari, Karo, and Bena.

This well designed lodge is ideally located offering comfortable and relaxed visits to the main Omo valley tribes namely, Hammer, Karo, Dassenech, Bume, and Benna.

Covering a total of 30,000 sq. meters area, Buska Lodge’s compound is a fascinating green area with about 120 species of plants.

In addition to the 20 standard bed rooms, the lodge also has 10 roofed camping islands for those who prefer camping. We provide camping gear including spacious water proof tents, sleeping mattresses, cooking huts, etc.

Read More.

Click here to visit hotel website

Aregash Lodge

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Yirga `Alem
Country: Ethiopia

Nestled between coffee fields and lush vegetation in Yirgalem town Aregash Lodge is a peaceful heaven for those who seek
... and a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The bamboo thatched Tukuls of Aregash Lodge are built in the style of a traditional Sidama village. Each bungalow is decorated with vibrant colors and furnished in traditional Sidama style to give a warm, luxurious feel
Read More.

Click here to visit hotel website

Trip Information

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►


Breakfast and dinner daily (hotels and restaurants), some lunches. All transport, sightseeing and entrance fees for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary. Gratuities for local guides, drivers, restaurant staff, porters. Airport transfers for land & air customers arriving/departing on tour dates.


International airfare to/from the tour. Tour Leader gratuity, lunches, drinks, personal items (phone, laundry, etc), departure taxes, domestic and international air taxes (if applicable), visa fees. Airport transfers for Land Only customers. Optional trip cancellation insurance. Our post-reservation trip notes offer further guidance on optional meal costs, visas, shopping, and locally paid departure taxes.

Seasonality and Weather

It is likely to be sunny most of the time on all departures. Most of the country is high, so although the sun is powerful, the temperature is usually pleasant. There is always, however, the risk of sunburn at high altitude. Nights are generally cool to cold, depending on altitude. In the north, daytime temperatures seldom rise above 25C (80F) falling to around 9 C (50 F).

At lower levels, such as the Omo Valley, temperatures can exceed 30 C (86 F) and fall to 15 C (60 F). The main rains come between June and mid-September; November is one of the coolest and clearest in the year. January will be hotter and drier with a more arid landscape than September - November, which can still be quite lush after the rains.

Warning: the January departure of this tour tends to fill up as early as a year in advance. Early booking is essential to ensure availability. Single supplements are strictly limited to four.

Transport and Travel Conditions

THIS IS A TRIP FOR THE HARDY! The itinerary has been designed to be as comfortable as possible, but this part of the world is still undeveloped. Many road journeys are long, rough, hot and dusty. While every precaution is taken to ensure the quality and hygiene of the accommodations and food provided, those with weak "constitutions" or reduced immunity should not travel to this destination. Medical facilities are limited and located only in major centres; even a minor injury or illness can become very serious in these isolated locales. Long walks may be required to reach some areas, including walks over steep gradients and poorly maintained paths in extreme heat. If you have difficulty walking, even over short distances, or require the assistance of a cane, we regret that this tour is not suitable for you.

We will be using 4WD Land Cruisers, 4WD mini buses or Coaster buses depending on the conditions of the roads and the size of the group. Air- conditioned vehicles are not available in Ethiopia.

Am I suitable for this tour? Please refer to our self-assessment form.


Hotel rooms are basic but generally clean with en suite toilet and bath facilities (usually shower only). In many places hotel accommodation is limited; we utilize the best tourist class properties available. Please do not expect all facilities to work flawlessly.

Staff and Support

Tour Leader, drivers, local guides.

Group Size

Maximum 18 plus Tour Leader




TOUR ENDAddis Ababa

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Our Kenya, Tanzania & Madagascar Group Tours are among the most popular offerings!… Read More
33 days from Nairobi to Cape Town
Nairobi, Kenya, is our entry point for our Kenya, Tanzania & Southern Africa tour, an… Read More
32 days from Cairo to Zanzibar
Setting down in the bustling metropolis of Cairo, Egypt, we start this extraordinary… Read More
32 days from Johannesburg to Arusha
Our Southern Africa, Kenya & Tanzania Tour begins in the gold capital of the world,… Read More
32 days from Entebbe to Zanzibar
Experience the great diversity of East Africa on this mammoth, month-long Rwanda, Uganda,… Read More
27 days from Cairo to Arusha
The initial portion of this wondrous 27-day Egypt, Kenya & Tanzania Tour is an adventure… Read More
27 days from Nairobi to Antananarivo
A special treat before we head into the heart of Tanzania on this 27-day,… Read More
27 days from Entebbe to Arusha
Uganda, a country that has been striving to put its troubled past firmly behind it, has… Read More
26 days from Johannesburg to Nairobi
One of the world's most dynamic and exciting cities in the world awaits us as we being… Read More
26 days from Nairobi to Cape Town
Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, is our first port of call on this 24-day explorative… Read More
25 days from Kigali to Zanzibar
This unbelievable Kenya & Tanzania Tour through four world-class destinations (includes… Read More
22 days from Mahe to Moroni
Imagine brilliantly bright, turquoise waters lapping on a shore of pristine white,… Read More
22 days from Kigali to Maun
This Africa 2020 Tour was designed by, and will be led by, senior Tour Leader Victor… Read More
21 days from Entebbe to Nairobi
No longer a country plagued by civil war and unrest, Uganda has recently come to enjoy a… Read More
21 days from Cairo to Nairobi
For the initial 12 days of this Egypt & Kenya tour, an incredible adventure through two… Read More
20 days from Nairobi to Zanzibar
Our Kenya and Tanzania tour takes you to destinations without equal in the realm of… Read More
20 days from Kigali to Arusha
Sign up for this wondrous Kenya & Tanzania Tour (as well as Rwanda) and be treated to… Read More
18 days from Addis Ababa to Khartoum
This bold and unique new Northern Sudan Tour travels the road MUCH less travelled, to… Read More
16 days from Addis Ababa to Asmara
This bold and unique new Horn of Africa tour travels the road MUCH less travelled, to… Read More
15 days from Nairobi to Arusha
No destination can compete with the safari opportunities in these two stunning East… Read More
14 days from Antananarivo to Antananarivo
Our Madagascar tour reveals an island of gold-sand beaches lined with swaying palm trees,… Read More
14 days from Kigali to Nairobi
The initial portion of our Rwanda & Kenya Tour, an exciting adventure through two highly… Read More
13 days from Addis Ababa to Addis Ababa
Our 13-day Ethiopia tour is an adventure through the diverse landscapes and unique… Read More
13 days from Nairobi to Zanzibar
The perfect introduction to the bounties of East Africa, our 13-day Tanzania tour… Read More
13 days from Entebbe to Kigali
The outstanding natural beauty and diversity of landscape in Uganda has long served as… Read More
9 days from Nairobi to Nairobi
On our Kenya tour, you'll discover a land of glacier-coated mountains, arid plains and… Read More
8 days from Nairobi to Arusha
Our Tanzania tour explores the largest nation in East Africa, and it is, without doubt,… Read More