Unravel the mysteries of Ethiopia on this comprehensive historical and cultural tour. Travel through awe-inspiring landscapes, visiting the tall cliff-churches of Tigray and the world-renowned sites of Axum, Lalibela and Gondar. Explore atmospheric monuments including a temple dedicated to a moon god, the reputed home of the Ark of the Covenant, stark monoliths towering high above tombs of long-dead kings, and revered rock-cut churches packed with religious treasures. Spend time cruising on tranquil Lake Tana and see the importance of its island monasteries in local people's everyday lives, and visit the awe-inspiring Blue Nile Fall.
Day-By- Day itinerary
Day 1: Addis Abeba :
Upon arrival in Addis Ababa, meet our representatives and transferto the given Hotel. During the day, visit historical sites in AddisAbaba including the National Archaeological Museum, where wewill view the 3.2 million year old remains of Lucy, whose skeletalremains when discovered in 1974. You will also visit the HolyTrinity Cathedrals and Mount Entoto which rises up to an altitudeof 3,200 meters and offers the panoramic view of the metropolis.Overnight at a hotel
Day 02- Addis Ababa-Axum ;
In the morning, transfer to Addis AbabaAirport for your flight to Axum. The rest of the day, Discover history and myth atthe Queen of Sheba's Palace and Bath before visiting the St Maryof Zion churches, reputedly home to the Ark of the Covenant.Continue to King Ezana's Stone, written in three ancient languages,en route to the tombs of King Kelab and Gebre Meskel, two of Axum's most important rulers who succeeded in bringing southernArabia under their rule. After lunch, visit the Axum stelae field andmuseum. A short walk offers excellent views of the surroundingcountryside, before a private visit to a local artist who specialisesin religious paintings. Overnight Axum ( hotel)
Day 03 - Drive to Hawsein.
Journey to a little visited but peaceful and astonishing spot Yeha which is Ethiopias first known capital and considered the birthplace of the country's earliest civilization. Its ruins areimpressive for their sheer age, dating from around the5th century BC. Also the monastery of Debre Damowhich is the first monastery in Ethiopia dates back toAksumite times. It boasts the oldest standing churchin the country. Overnight Hawssen (hotel).
Day 04- Hawsein - Mekele In the morning,
visit either Abuna Yemata Guh or Maryam Korkor.Both churches involve an approximate one-hour hike but offercommanding views of the surrounding area. After lunch, continueyour visit with the more easily-accessible churches of Abreha weAtsbeha and Chirkos. Afterwards, proceed driving to Mekele forovernight (hotel).
Day 05- Mekele -Lalibela:
You will have an early morning departure from Mekele to Lalibela. This will be a full day of car travel, but on the way you may have time to visit a few of the previously visited sites. Overnight Lalibela (hotel).
Day 06 -
in the morning, visit the first group of rock-hewn churches- bet Medhane Alem , Bet Maryam , Bet Meskel, Bet Danaghel , Bet Mikael & Bet Golgotha (not allowed for women). After lunch, head to the second group of rock-hewnchurches which represent scenes of the heavenlyJerusalem. Finally visit the cross-shaped church of St. George which is regarded to be the third group and isthe last work of church excavation by King Lalibela.Overnight in Lalibela (hotel).
after breakfast, you set off on mule or on foot to the church ofAshetun Mariam, about a 4 hours round trip. An alternative to theAshetun Mariam trip, or if visitors are not afraid of a full day it canbe done in the afternoon in addition to Ashetun Mariam, visit the the church of yimrehanne Kristos, the most popular of the church outside of Lalibela, this church is built in the late -Axumite style, with layers of wood and granite, set in the entrance to a large cavern. Overnight Lalibela ( hotel).
Day 08- Lalibela - flight Gondar ;
In the morning, transfer to Lalibela Airport for your flight to Gondar. The rest ofthe day, then, explore Fasiladas Castle compound, which covers an area of over 70,000sq m (229,659 sq ft), surrounded by high stone walls. Emperor Fasiladas Palace is the oldest and perhaps most impressive of the castles. It is two stories high, has an imposing parapet and four small domed towers. continue to Debre Berhan Salassie Church, probably the country's most famous church and a highlight of Gondar. Its ceiling is covered with famous paintings of Ethiopian cherubs and the walls portray Ethiopian saints, martyrs, and lore. Overnight Gondar (hotel).
Day 09- Gondar - Bahir Dar
This morning we will drive to Bahir Dar throuh the Guzara Castle site the ruined castle which was built before the establishment of Gondar arriving in Bahir Dar in time for lunch.the rest of the day, you will visit the small town of Tiss Issat meaning smoking fire. Cross the Blue Nile on a small boat which offers stunning photo opportunities. This evening, visit Bezawit Hill to watch the wonderful sunset. Overnight Bahir Dar.
after an erealy breakfast you will take on a boat trip Lake Tana, Ethiopia's largest lake, which is dotted with some 30 islands of which 20 are home to monasteries and churches. We will be taking you to Zega penninsula and the Monastery of Azuwa Maryam & Ura Kidane Mhiret which it is believed to date back to the 16th Century, & the island monastery of Debre Maram near the outlet of the Blue Nile River. Overnight Bahir Dar ( hotel).
Day 12: Bahir Dar-Addis Ababa ;
In the morning, transfer to the airport for theflight to Addis & In the evening, therewill be Grand Holidays complimentaryfarewell dinner party. There will not be better way of ending a trip. (flight schedule permitting) At the end of the farewell dinner, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back . End of tour!