Ethiopia November 2024!
If you have been craving an off-the-beaten path adventure, together with a community of people with the same love for travel, all while exploring one of the most incredible countries in the world…
What will you experience?
Day 1: Crash course into Ethiopia - Addis Ababa
As most international flights arrive in Addis Ababa early morning, we’ll kickstart the trip by having a first glimpse into the vibrant capital city with some of my all-time favorite local guides: Bre and Dessie.
Starting the day with:
- a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony in a hole in the wall type of coffee shop - you’re at the birthplace of coffee after all.
- You’ll get to see the largest outdoor market in Africa and look for the local superfoods and world famous species,
- Then take a walk to one of the hidden viewpoints to get the best views over the city as a first introduction, before …
- heading for late lunch to try the city’s best Beyaynetu — the Ethiopian staple eaten with injera, a sourdough flatbread made of fermented teff flour, considered a superfood.
Capital cities are always a good way to crash-course your way into a new destination, and now it’s time to go deeper:
Days 2-4: Semien Mountains National Park
You will take an internal scenic flight (covered by us) to Semien mountains national park.
Having been off-limits to tourists for multiple years and only having reopened last year, this is where we start to get truly off the beaten path. Surrounded by a lot of endemic, unique vegetation we start our 2 day moderate hiking trip to visit the most scenic points of this National Park. You have very high chances of seeing the world’s only gelada baboons that can be found nowhere other than here!
You’ll also get to see Ethiopia’s tallest waterfall, and of course Semien’s signature view of lush green mountain layers stacked on top of on another dotted with colorful flowers — one of its kind on this continent.
So, to summarise :
— 2 day moderate hike through Semien Mountains National Park
— Ethiopia’s tallest waterfall
— Spotting the world’s only Gelada Baboons
You will have a team of professional hiking guides and cooks to help you prepare re-energising breakfasts, lunches, and dinners with a view, and those mouthwatering campsite bonfire barbecues on designated campsites. You will have fresh water and toilets available at your campsites as well
Tents will be provided by us as well.
— local cook & trekking guides for our crew
— sunset bonfires
— tents provided
Day 5-7: Lalibela
This trip is all about Ethiopian diversity, so after visiting the nature capital of the country, we will now visit the spiritual center of the nation: Lalibela! An important city of Christians all over the world, and especially Africa.
After taking a domestic flight to Gondar, previously a capital of Ethiopia during historic times, touring the ancient fort and city, we’ll take on the lengthy drive to get to Lalibela high up in the mountains, but not before fueling up on some good old bejajnetu, our favorite Ethiopian dish.
This morning you’ll get your first look of the rock hewn churches in the ochre red rocks sitting atop hills is what makes Lalibela a destination like nowhere else in the world, with many pilgrims flocking in every day.
For two days, you will get to explore alongside a local, the many sights of this religious city and learn about its traditions, art, and hidden passages taking you below the structures carved into the thousand year old rocks.
You will even get to experience a mass: the music, the devotion, traditions …
Day 8: Into the desert
The last part is my personal highlight of the trip: after another flight within the country to get you to the remote north, you touch down in Semara: the gateway to the Danakil desert, one of the driest and hottest places on earth. This trip is all about diversity, remember? From lush mountains, bustling cities, calm spiritual mountain towns, to now the unforgiving desert.
In our convoy of 4x4’s we’ll drive into the volcanic landscape of Danakil. We’ll get a chance to visit a nomadic settlement of the unique Afar ethnic group, who live in handmade huts that can be folded and transported to the next water site when their source runs out. A humbling reminder of resilience.
As the infrastructure is limited, and hotel for tourists to not exist at all in this region, we found a different solution: We’ll settle on our simple makeshift beds under the starry sky, and without light pollution nor clouds, you have very good chances of seeing the stars of the galaxy in their full splendor. Tonight, you’ll be sleeping in a million star hotel.
Day 9: million colors of Dallol
The next morning we start early, before the sun rises, to make sure we explore during the times of day with moderate temperatures (but all is relative 😆), and see the sunrise over the salt flats and salt lake: perfect to catch surreal reflections of the dawn colors.
Afterwards we’ll head to one of the most spectacularly colorful sights the world has to offer: Dallol. A geological anomaly and the center of 3 tectonic plates moving away from each other makes way to fascinating formations occurring on the earth’s surface, and sulfur pools in the color of the rainbow.
Before heading back for an early lunch, you’ll also get to swim in a salt pool in the middle of the desert, where you float just like in the Jordanian Dead Sea.
9-10: Erta Ale Volcano
We’ve saved the best for last: Erta Ale volcano, one of a few volcanoes in the whole world where you can go right on the crater rim, and see an active lava flow in front of your eyes. We will see it both during the night, for the bright lava spectacle and Milky Way above, and for sunrise, as the ball of fire called sun peaks above the earth’s surface again, matching the fire you see coming from earth - to remind you that everything is connected.
This trip is for adventure seekers, and travelers that love unusual destinations with hidden gems. Those who don’t mind getting out of their comfort zone and prioritizing memories over material things. Does that sound like you? Then you should join this Ethiopian group adventure!
4 days in the South of Ethiopia: meet tribes and traditions completely different from the north.
Meet your team:
How does the payment work?
3 months before, 40% of the trip balance, and two months before, the remaining 40%. This is so you have more flexibility with covering the cost and don't need to pay everything at once. Let us know if you need a payment plan, we are happy to help!
BONUS: if you have a points program you can collect points from our trips as we are under the “travel” category!
Other payment options such as PayPal, or bank transfer, are available too if you prefer.
💵 What will I get?
... and what's not:
✔️ Personal airport pickup and dropoff
Intl. flight to & from Addis Ababa intl. airport
✔️ All transportation on ground in Ethiopia
Personal travel insurance (9$-40$)
✔️ Experienced, knowledgable and fun local guides (you'll meet Bre, my favourite tour guide in the world!)
We are partnering with people who have worked with Anthony Bourdain and National Geographic. Now if that isn't a big deal...
Personal expenses (for souvenirs, for example) & tips
✔️ 4 domestic flights to get to the remote corners of the country and back
Visa/E-Visa (82$) - We will send instruction to facilitate the process for you
✔️ All wildlife permits
Most lunches and dinners (about 15$ per day total)
✔️ All national park fees
✔️ All accommodation on a shared basis of 2 - twin rooms (we believe this is an essential part for people to connect throughout the trip)
|✔️ Breakfasts and some lunches & dinners
|✔️ Bottled fresh water throughout the trip
✔️All cost of mentioned activities
Why this trip?
At Destination Chaser we combine unforgettable adventures for the traveler, with giving back to the communities that we are fortunate enough to be hosted by. This Adventure to Ethiopia is one of our prime examples of eco tourism merged with cultural immersion together with locals, to make a lasting impact. Thank you for being part of this movement!
What flights should I look for?
Flying in & out of Addis Ababa intl. Airport (ADD airport code). Arrival November 5th, 2024 in the morning.
Departure November 14th, 2024 anytime. You will find the most connections with the reliable and world-class Ethiopian Airlines.
Your international flights in & out of Ethiopia must be booked with Ethiopian Airlines to keep the same trip fare for the domestic flights (which are included in the above trip price). If a different airline than Ethiopian Airlines is booked, the airline might charge an additional fee for taking another airline internationally, which is the participant’s own responsibility to cover, in that case.
What about the visa for Ethiopia?
It is a very easy process, and we will send you instructions on what to fill out for your eVisa - easy peasy. It will be through this link:
The cost is approximately USD 82,- but depends on your nationality.
Any more questions?
Looking forward to seeing you soon!
With love, Andi