Ethiopia Historical Route
Ethiopia historical route tour is an ultimate road safari in Ethiopia. This African safari in Ethiopia will start and end in the capital, Addis Ababa. This Ethiopia historical route tour takes you on a historical and cultural tour.
About the 12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour
Ethiopia has a proud and long history extending all the way to the known beginnings of human kind. The Ethiopia historical route tour goes to the Gonderite and Axumite empires. On this Ethiopia historical trip you will tour Lalibela. This includes the rock churches of Tigray.
The journey takes travelers some 2000 kilometers through the Ethiopian countryside, mountains and desert. The Ethiopia historical route tour goes from site to site. This gives the traveler a chance to see the places between sites. You'll enjoy local culture and see Ethiopia that exists outside the popular historic sites.
12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour Highlights
Among the highlights of this Ethiopia historical route tour is a visit to Lalibela. This Ethiopia historical route tour will also take you to Axum and Gondar. Other highlights include:
- Blue Nile Falls, Bahir Dar
- Boat trip on lake Tana with unique island monasteries and nature
- Former imperial town of Gondar (UNESCO world heritage site)
- Breath-taking landscapes of the Simien Mountains with many endemic animals (UNESCO world natural site)
- Former imperial town of Axum with many relics of a several thousand-year-old civilizations
- Lalibela, the unofficial 8th wonder of the world (UNESCO world heritage site)
Detailed 12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Addis Ababa - Bahir Dar
You’ll be met by our Ethiopia safari rep at your hotel. This can also be at the Bole Airport on arrival in the morning. You’ll be briefed on this Ethiopia historical route tour. This will be followed by an early departure.
You’ll drive north to Bahir Dar via Debre Markos. This drive will visit the Portuguese bridge. This is said to have been the first bridge in Ethiopia. You’ll proceed and pass through the spectacular Blue Nile Gorge. This gorge extends nearly 400km and reaches depths up to 1500m. Your overnight in Bahir Dar will be at EthioStar Hotel.
Day 2: Bahir Dar
Start your day on Ethiopia historical route tour with breakfast. You will then take a boat trip on Lake Tana. You’ll be visiting a selection of the monasteries. They are hidden on the islands and shores of this sacred lake.
The visit takes you to the Zege Peninsula. The monasteries here include Azuwa Maryam and Ura Kidane Mehret. In the island there is the monastery of Debre Maryam. This is near the outlet of the Blue Nile River. In the afternoon you’ll drive out to the Blue Nile Falls for a short hike in the area. You’ll end your day with the sunset over the lake. Your overnight in Bahir Dar will be at EthioStar Hotel.
Day 3: Bahir Dar – Gondar
Start your Ethiopia historical route tour with breakfast. This will be followed by departure driving north to Gondar. This will be a four-hour drive going through rural villages. This offers you wonderful insight into the Amhara culture. You’ll get to interact with their traditional agricultural methods still in use today. You are expected at your Gondar hotel before lunch time.
The afternoon will be spent exploring the sites of Gondar. They include the Royal Enclosure, with six castles and several other buildings. Additionally, you will visit Fasilidas’s Pool, still used for Timket celebrations today. There is also the Debre Birhan Selassie church. It has the most famous ceiling in Ethiopia. You’ll sleep in Gondar at Queen Taitu Pension.
Day 4: Gondar - Simien Mountains
You will wake up to an early breakfast in Ethiopia historical route tour. This is before an early morning departure to Sankober. This is in the Simien Mountains. From here you will go for an easy hike to the Geech Abyss. Here you’ll see a large waterfall as the Jinbar River plunges into the abyss.
This area is also a great place for viewing the endemic gelada baboon. They are also known as the ‘bleeding heart baboon. This is because of the red patch of skin on its chest. Your night in the Simien Mountains will be at Simien Lodge.
Day 5: Simien Mountains – Axum
You will wake up to tour breakfast in Simien Lodge. Your Ethiopia historical route tour then departs north for Axum. You’ll enjoy spectacular views of the Simien Mountains as you drive away. You’ll have a stop for lunch in Adi Arkay.
The drive then proceeds through the dramatic Tekeze Valley. This place offers some of the best landscapes in the country. Proceed to Axum, home of the ancient Axumite Empire. It is also the Queen of Sheba, and the Ark of the Covenant. Your overnight in Axum will be at Africa Hotel.
Day 6: Axum
Today your Ethiopia historical route tour has a full day visiting the sites of Axum. This includes the famous obelisks. One was recently erected after being returned from Italy. There is the archaeological museum and the Queen of Sheba’s Bath. The latter supplies water to Axum year-round. You’ll also visit Ezana’s inscription, King Kaleb’s tomb and King Bazen’s tomb.
You cannot finish the royalty visit without the Queen of Sheba’s Palace. In Axum you can also visit the St. Mary of Zion church. This is where the Ark of the Covenant is kept. It is only men who are allowed to enter the old church. Unfortunately, you are not allowed to enter the chapel where the Ark is kept. This is a preserve one specially chosen guardian monk. Your overnight will be at in Axum at Africa Hotel.
Day 7: Axum – Hawsein
Your Ethiopia historical route tour will begin with breakfast. You’ll then drive to visit the ruins of Yeha. These ruins date back to the 8th to 5th centuries BC. It is thought to be the capital of Ethiopian civilization before Axum. You’ll later visit the Debre Damo monastery. Here the men must climb up a 15-m rope to enter. Unfortunately, women are not allowed to enter. You’ll proceed through the state of Tigray. You’ll stop en-route for a visit to the rock-hewn church of Medhane Alem Adi Kesho. You’ll have your overnight in Hawsein at Gheralta Lodge.
Day 8: Hawsein – Mekele
After breakfast you’ll visit either Abuna Yemata Guh or Maryam Korkor. Both churches involve an approximate one-hour hike. But they offer commanding views of the surrounding area. After lunch, continue your visit with the more accessible churches. You’ll tour the church of Abreha we Atsbeha and Chirkos. The Ethiopia historical route tour then proceeds to Mekele for overnight at Hilltop Hotel.
Day 9: Mekele – Lalibela
You’ll spend the full day of Ethiopia historical route tour in Lalibela. The morning will be spent on a trip to the church of Yimrehanne Kristos. It is the most popular of the churches outside of Lalibela. This church is built with layers of wood and granite. It is set in the entrance to a large cavern. Your Ethiopia historical route tour will return to Lalibela for lunch break.
You will have the afternoon visiting the South-eastern Cluster of churches. They include Bet Gabriel-Rufael, Bet Merkorios, Bet Amanual, and Bet Abba Libanos. You cannot complete Ethiopia historical route tour without visiting Bet Giyorgis. It is the most famous Ethiopian church. It was constructed in honor of the patron saint of Ethiopia – Saint George. Overnight will be in Lalibela Lal Hotel.
Day 11: Lalibela – Kombolcha
Your Ethiopia historical route tour will begin with breakfast. This is before you visit the nearby monastery of Na’akuto La’ab. The monastery is set on the side of a cliff. After the visit you’ll proceed to Kombolcha via Woldia.
On the way you will stop for a rest in Hayk. Here you can enjoy the views of this stunning lake. You can visit the local monastery that is open for men only and enjoy the birdlife. Your overnight in Kombolcha will be at Sunnyside Hotel.
Day 12: Kombolcha – Addis Ababa
This is the last day of your Ethiopia historical route tour. The day will begin with an early breakfast. This will be followed by departure. The drive takes you through the Mezezo Escarpment. You have a good chance to see the endemic Gelada baboons. If this falls on a Sunday, a stop at Senbete will be important. Here you’ll visit the lively market including the interesting camel market.
---------- End of Ethiopia Historical Route Tour ----------
12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour Safari Costs:
What is included in the 12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour Safari cost?
- Accommodation on Twin/Double Bed Room sharing basis
- All entrance(admission) fees at places of visits in the itinerary
- All transfer in and outs
- Comfortable safari vehicle
- Gasoline (fuel) and driver's allowance
- Professional experienced English-speaking guide for the entire route
- All on-site guides
- Boat hire at Lake Tana and to cross the Blue Nile River
- Scouts at the Simien Mountains NP
- Guide Air Fare
- Bottled Water in the vehicle
- And, all related government taxes
12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour Safari Price excludes:
- Any meals and drinks
- Visa Fee
- Domestic flight fare
- Fees to take pictures and videos
- Any expense of personal nature such as souvenirs, laundry, tips for service people, etc
- And, any expense which is not mentioned in the "Included" List above
What to Carry on the 12 Day Ethiopia Historical Route Tour?
- Light and a few heavy clothing for evenings
- Closed, comfortable shoes
- Hiking boots
- Sun protection like sun cream, hat