8 Days Itinerary - Northern Historical Route

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Day 1 - Addis-Debre Marcos. 

Day 2 – Debre Marcos to Bahar Dar

Day 3 – Bahar Dar-Gondar.

Day 4 – City Tour in Gondat

Day 5 - Gondar-Lalibela.

Day 6 - Visit the Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela.

Day 7 - Lalibela-Dessie/Kombolcha.

Day 8  - Dessie/Kombolcha-Addis.


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Day 1 - Addis to Debre Markos. Depart Addis for  Northern Ethiopia. On the way visit one of Orthodox’s most holy sites: the Debre Libanos monastery founded in the 13th century by Abune Tekle-Haimanot, one of Ethiopia's most celebrated saints.  Fom Debre-Libanos  the main route continues north to the Canyon of the Blue Nile or Abay river.  The road descends 1500 metres   winding spectacularly downwards into the canyoon to the river far below. It is one of the most dramatic roads in the country.  After climbing out of the canyon the road 2500m high Gojam  plateau to Debre-Markos. Overnight, stay in Hotel.

Day 2 - Debre Marcos  to Bahar Dar to the shores of Lake Tana. The route crosses the high Gojam plains, well-known for its teff production. Tef is the staple grain of the Ethiopian diet.  Midway to Bahar Dar, visit the beautiful  Zengena crater lake.This  region is occupied by the Agew nation where the name of our company. Anini  means bamboo in the Agew Language. Upon arrival in Bahar Dar, Hotel check in,  lunch followed by a  drive 45 minutes on unpaved road to the tiny village of Tis- Abay (Tis-Isat).  The round trip  takes 1.5 hour walking with a short   boat crossing of the Blue Nile River in order to have  a great close up view of the falls and a free shower from the  water  smoke at the base of the falls. Return to to Bahar Dar to overnight and enjoy local fish for dinner.

Day 3 - Bahar Dar-Gondar. In the morning, visit the Island monasteries on  Lake Tana.  These include  medieval island monasteries such as Kibran-Gabriel, Entos-Eyesus. On the Zege peninsula visit Ura Kidan Mehiret, Azuwa Mariam, Mahal Giorgis and finally the outlet of  the Blue Nile where it exits the lake. Return to  Bahar Dar for lunch then continue to Gondar a 3 hour drive. Overnight, stay in hotel.

Day 4 - City tour in Gondar. Visit the Royal Enclosure that is surrounded by high stone walls containing the 17th century palaces of King Fasil, King Iyasu, Queen Mentewab and different other buildings. Visit also Fasiladas’ Bath, (that is filled with water for the important Timkat (epiphany) ceremony once a year) In the afternoon visit the church of Debre Berhan Selassie which  has a ceilings decorated with beautiful winged Angels. If there is time  visit Kuskuwam Complex which is a royal compound built by the Empress Mentewab. Inside the palace look out the figures of crosses and Ethiopian characters and animals, such as St. Samuel riding his lion. You could also get pleasure from the top view of Goha hotel. Overnight stay in the Hotel.

Day 5 - Gondar-Lalibela.  On day 5 we depart Gondar and travel to Lalibela via Gashena. Driving eastwards across the Ethiopian plateau provides views of gorges and traditional Amhara villages. Before reaching lalibela the route crosses the impressive Tacaze river gorge before climbing  up to the lofty mountain town of Lalibela. Overnight in hotel.

Day 6  - Visit the Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela.  Today we visit the Lalibela rock churches in the town. Which are in three clusters separated by the River Jordan. In the morning we visit  the first and the third clusters of churches and in the afternoon the second.. Overnight  in hotel.

Day 7 - Lalibela-Dessie/Kombolcha. Leaving Lalibela the route to Dessie passes through yet more magnificent mountain scenery. It also provides the opportunity to see the villages and lifestyle of the Amhara people who live on the plateau.

Thirty km  before reaching Dessie, there is the option of  visiting the large  Haik Crater Lake and its 13th Century Istephanos monastery.  Here it is possible to see local fisherman using small reed boats. Overnight stay in hotel in Dessie or nearby Kombolcha.

 

Day 8  - Dessie/Kombolcha-Addis. It is 400 km and a full day drive  back to Addis Ababa passing through a varied and always beautiful landscape. The route traverses lowlands with Oromo camel culture, climbs the great escarpment at Debre Sina and passes across the high plateau through interesting Oromo and Amhara villages.

 

Back in Addis, spend your last evening enjoying  a traditional farewell dinner with Ethiopian cultural music and dancing. Either spend the night in Addis or the evening transfer to the airport for return flight.

 

 

Et Flight Schedule