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Wild Ethiopia

Tailor Made Itinerary

11 Days From $7,329

Overview

This fascinating journey uncovers some of Ethiopia’s wildest and most extreme landscapes. Exploring one of Africa’s most diverse countries, begin in the historically-rich region of Tigray where you will discover rock-hewn churches and dramatic escarpments. From here travel east to the unforgiving Danakil Depression, one of the lowest and hottest places on earth. Discover the alien salt landscapes of Dallol and take on a memorable trek to the top of the active volcano Erta Ale, where ...
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TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Immerse yourself in nature as you sleep under the stars and camp on the edge of Erte Ale's dramatic volcano
  • Visit the holy city of Harar and experience the age-old tradition of hyena man
  • Discover life in the salt flats as you catch a glimpse of the salt miners plying their ancient and gruelling trade of salt extraction
  • Explore the less-visited Alledeghi Wildlife Reserve and go in search of zebra, hyena and ostrich
  • Experience the amazing waterfalls in Awash National Park whilst trying to spot one of the 350 species that are recorded in this area
  • Enjoy local palm wine and Ethiopia's famous national dish - injera, as you pass through some of the country's more remote areas

ITINERARY

This is a suggested itinerary. Our experts have all travelled widely in the region and will be happy to tailor any of our itineraries to suit your tastes, or build a trip from scratch.

EXPAND ALL ITINERARY DAYS
COLLAPSE ALL ITINERARY DAYS

DAY 1: ARRIVE MEKELE

DAY 1: ARRIVE MEKELE

On arrival in Mekele you will be met by a Wild Frontiers representative who will transfer you to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure to acclimatise.

The Planet Hotel

DAY 2: MEKELE – AHMED ELA

DAY 2: MEKELE – AHMED ELA

This morning you will get the chance to discover some of the region’s wonderful rock-hewn churches. Visit Wukro Cherkos, a crooked cruciform sandstone church, which is semi-monolithic and believed to have been created during the 4th century. Continue on to the rock hewn church of Abreha Atsbeha, considered among the country`s earliest churches and architecturally one of its finest. Enjoy the dramatic scenery of the Northern Tigray region as you then enjoy some lunch before setting off for Ahmed Ela. Arrive late afternoon and settle into your camp for the evening.

Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 3: AHMED ELA – DALLOL – ABALA

DAY 3: AHMED ELA – DALLOL – ABALA

This morning you will visit Dallol, the lowest part of the Danakil Depression at 120metres below sea level, and the hottest inhabited area on earth. The acidic hot springs of sulphur, salt, iron oxide, and other minerals facilitate small gas geysers and pools of acid creating an unearthly, desolate and colourful landscape. Continuing on you can visit the salt mining area of Lake Asale. This precious stone salt or Amole was once used as a currency in Ethiopia. Today, hundreds of camel caravans can be found on the road daily transporting salt to the north western highlands of Ethiopia. Return to camp for some lunch before setting off for Abala.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4: ABALA – ERTA ALE

DAY 4: ABALA – ERTA ALE

Today is a long drive on to Kursuad where you will be issued permits and can arrange for support camels with the Afar village leader. Drive on to the basecamp via Dodom, enjoying a packed lunch along the way. As evening sets in, you will then begin your adventure up Erta Ale volcano. Set off on foot for a two-hour walk from basecamp up to the rim of the volcano. Enjoy dinner here and camp out in the small concrete shelters which have been constructed by the locals.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5: ERTA ALE - SEMERA

DAY 5: ERTA ALE - SEMERA

Rise early in the morning to catch another sight of the volcano before walking back down to basecamp. Here you will meet your vehicle again and set off on a long drive to Semera.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6: SEMERA – ALLEDEGHI WILDLIFE RESERVE

DAY 6: SEMERA – ALLEDEGHI WILDLIFE RESERVE

This morning sees another long drive as you make your way to the less-visited Alledeghi Wildlife Reserve. This unique area is home to a diverse wildlife, including Grevy’s zebra, spotted hyena, wild ass, Somali ostrich, gerenuk, among many others, as well as an abundance of birdlife.

Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 7: ALLEDEGHI WILDLIFE RESERVE – AWASH NATIONAL PARK

DAY 7: ALLEDEGHI WILDLIFE RESERVE – AWASH NATIONAL PARK

Wake early this morning to make the most of your time here and spend a few hours exploring this beautiful area. The lodge is known for its wonderful natural hot springs so treat yourself to a soak before driving on to Awash National Park this afternoon, where you can enjoy a late afternoon game drive.

Awash Falls Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 8: AWASH NATIONAL PARK

DAY 8: AWASH NATIONAL PARK

You'll spend today exploring the park in the company of your driver-guide. Awash National Park encompasses a fascinating array of volcanic landscapes that has become a haven for a range of birdlife. See if you can spot colobus monkeys, golden jackals and spotted hyenas today. Lions and leopards are around but are rare sightings these days. There is also the option of visiting Awash River Falls on your safari.

Awash Falls Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 9: AWASH NATIONAL PARK - HARAR

DAY 9: AWASH NATIONAL PARK - HARAR

Today you'll continue east towards the historic walled city of Harar, taking approximately 7 hours. Situated on a high escarpment on the southern edge of the Chercher Mountains, the town commands views across the deep gorges, deserts and savannah of the staunchly Christian Highlands. One of Ethiopia's most fascinating towns, it has recently been ascribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage list. This evening you can enjoy the ancient tradition of feeding the hyenas, a spectacle which still regularly draws the crowds.

Harar Ras Hotel
Breakfast

DAY 10: HARAR – DIRE DAWA

DAY 10: HARAR – DIRE DAWA

Situated on a high escarpment with views over deep gorges, desert and savannah, the historic city of Harar has recently been listed in UNESCO World heritage lists. There are 82 mosques and 102 shrines to explore which all contribute to giving the city the title of fourth holiest city of Islam. Harar’s old walled town, or Jugal as it is known locally, dates back to the 1560s when the original wall was built and is one of the town’s most fascinating features. Spend the day exploring before driving an hour to Dire Dawa.

Samrat Hotel
Breakfast

DAY 11: DIRE DAWA – DEPART ADDIS ABABA

DAY 11: DIRE DAWA – DEPART ADDIS ABABA

You'll have some time this morning to discover what Dire Dawa has to offer, including a walk around the interesting local market and also a visit to the old train station. In the afternoon you will then fly back to Addis in time to connect with your onward flight.

Breakfast

SUGGESTED ACCOMMODATION

Simple

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Accommodation listed here is intended as a guide only, to give you a taste of what we can do. Our experts can tailor any aspect of this itinerary and accommodation to suit your budget and tastes.

GUIDELINE PRICE & WHAT’S INCLUDED

WILD ETHIOPIA (11 DAYS) $7,329

MEALS

As specified in the itinerary, sampling some of the country's finest cuisine.

TRANSPORT

Private air-conditioned vehicles with experienced, dedicated drivers.

ENTRANCE FEES

Tours and admission fees, including tickets specified in the itinerary.

EXPERT TEAM

Licensed English-speaking guides and a support team available 24/7.

ACCOMMODATION

As specified in the itinerary, using some of our favourite local properties.

ACCOMMODATION

Ultra - The best of the best, the ultimate indulgence
Luxury - Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium - Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior - Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple - No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

CARBON CONTRIBUTIONS

If you book international flights through Wild Frontiers.

This itinerary is aimed to give you an idea of what we can offer. The price shown above is based on two people travelling outside of peak periods. As this itinerary is only a suggestion and can be tailor-made to suit your interests and budget, your final price may differ.

START PLANNING YOUR TRIP

Our team of experts have a wealth of knowledge and experience to help you plan your adventure of a lifetime.

WHEN TO GO

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

Meet the expert, Jamie

Jamie is our Sub Saharan expert, who has travelled extensively in the region.

Speak to Jamie by calling
+44 (0)20 3944 6258

Spend at least 3 nights in the Simien Mountains – ancient monkeys, Scottish-like highlands, and fantastic hiking. Also try honey wine- it is delicious and always made locally!

OTHER ITINERARIES IN ETHIOPIA