This cultural and historical itinerary includes stops in the north and east of Ethiopia, where the country's major heritage sites are located: Lalibela, Aksum, Gondar and Bahar Dar in the north, Harar and Dire Dawa in the east. From antiquity to the 19th century, from the foundation of the Solomonid dynasty by the Queen of Sheba to those of Gondar, including the Muslim domination of the kingdoms of Nubia
Day 1: Visit of Addis Ababa, the capital
Day 2: Lalibela: visit of the surroundings
Day 3: Lalibela: the eleven churches in the centre
Day 4: Road trip: Sekota and Mékélé
Day 5: Churches of Tigray Dabra Tsion and Abouna Yemata
Day 6: The monastery of Debre Damo and the site of Yéha
Day 7: :: Stelas and the Queen's Palace of Saba
Day 8: Gondar: the castles of the Fassilida dynasty
Day 9: En route to Bahar Dar
Day 10: Bahar Dar and the monasteries of Lake Tana
Day 11: Visit to Harar, Islamic capital
Day 12: On the khat road
Day 13: Saying Dawa at the gates of Djibouti
Day 14: Addis Ababa, crafts, music and dance
Day 15: Return to Paris
Visit of the capital Addis Ababa. The Ethnological Museum provides a very good overview of the cultural reality of contemporary Ethiopia. You can eat at his restaurant Lucy's, delicious. An escapade to Entoto Hill allows you to discover one of Menelik II's first palaces and have a panoramic view of the Ethiopian capital.
Early in the morning we take an Addis-Lalibela plane. Arrival at the hotel and departure for the visit of the Estifanos monastery on the shores of Lake Hayq, or some churches around the city. The bravest can go to the Yemrehanna Kristos church near Bilbila, one of the most surprising in terms of its decoration.
It takes a good day to take the time to visit and soak up the faith of the eleven incredible churches carved into the rock of Lalibela, also known as New Jerusalem. We recommend that you visit the north group in the morning, the most spectacular, and the south group in the afternoon.
We recommend a magnificent road trip to Mekélé, capital of Tigré, from Lalibela, via a long road in the middle of the Ethiopian plateaus. Take a break in Sekota, a village where the beautiful hypoglyphic church of Wukré Mestale Kristos is located. On arrival in the afternoon: walk in the city of Mékélé and visit the palace of Johannès IV.
Visit of some churches in Tigray, some of which are accessible and others, more spectacular, isolated on their rocky spurs. We recommend those of Dabra Tsion and Abouna Yemata, if you are a minimum athlete and not subject to vertigo. Night in Wikro or Hausian
Drive to Aksum, with an excursion on the way to Debre Damo Monastery, one of the most impressive in the country (but forbidden to women), and to the Temple of Jeha, the oldest building in Ethiopia. The journey through mountainous tracks with visits takes a full day. Arrival in Aksum, discovery of the lively city in tuk-tuk
Visit of Aksum, the northernmost city of the country on the border of Somalia. Its majestic stelas are of pagan times, which we know little about today. We visit the royal tombs, the ruins of the palace of the Queen of Saba and the churches, as everywhere. Plane for Gondar late in the day, night on site.
Gondar: visit the fortified complex of the city's six castles, capital of Ethiopian rulers from the 17th to the 19th century, and the unmissable Debre Birhan Selassie church. A stroll through the city, quite developed and dynamic. Rest in preparation for the trek in the Simien the next morning very early
Drive towards Bahar Dar, take half a day in 4 x 4. On the way, admire the beautiful landscapes around Lake Tana. Afternoon: walk in the pleasant city of pleasure on the edge of the lake, shopping shopping of the region, well deserved rest and dinner in a good restaurant in the center.
Take a day to carry out excursions on the monasteries of Lake Tana and visit the beautiful churches that are built there, some of which have the finest frescoes of the country. Take an airplane to Say Dawa, in correspondence in Addis Ababa, because direct flights do not exist.
Visit the city of Harar, considered as the 4th holy city by the Islamic world and which has more than 100 mosques! Visit the Muslim market, the house of Rimbaud, the palace of Ras Makonnen and the city walls. In the evening, attend the feeding of hyenas, a centuries-old tradition at the gates of the city
The surroundings of Harar are worth a look, its coffee and khat cultures are unique in the world. Visit Koremi, Babillé, and the Valley of Wonders. At the end of the day, stop in Awadey, the world capital of khat, from where several hundred kilos of this plant leave every evening for Somalia, Djibouti and Yemen.
Visit to Say Dawa, the great city of the region, with its market teeming with colour and spicy scents, its colonial streets and above all its former station, ancient heart flying from this charming city at the gates of Djibouti. Fly to Addis Ababa by plane.
Take advantage of being in the capital to visit the lively and popular market districts in the hypercentre, and go shopping. Traditional fabrics, silver jewellery, crafts... You will find all kinds of gifts to bring back. Go out in the evening to an ethiojazz or traditional Ethiopian music and dance club to discover the traditions of each region
Enjoy a last half day to visit the places of the capital that you haven't had the opportunity to discover. Return to Paris by plane from Bollé airport.
Each Travel Idea is customizable according to your wishes