Ethiopia holidays may not top your list of luxury travel destinations, not when weighed against hot spots like Paris, St Lucia, New York or Gstaad. But what most travellers don’t realise is that Ethiopia is the hidden gem of Africa.
With good food, good entertainment and a variety of activities for visitors and locals alike, Ethiopia is a treasure trove of culture and excitement.
Don’t believe me? Let me explain how I fell in love with this country, and how you can, too. Here are three reasons to visit Ethiopia.
There’s so much to do in Ethiopia! I went for two weeks, was seeing something new every day, and still felt like I was barely scratching the surface of all this country had to offer.
One of the must-sees is Simien National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where you can challenge yourself with three and four day treks into the heart of the African wilderness.
You should also check out the mountains of Debark for a glimpse of lions, baboons and hundreds of different kinds of birds.
Not into the outdoors? Then you can pamper yourself with Ethiopian luxury in the spas of Mekele.
One of the great advantages of Ethiopia holidays is the chance to broaden your horizons and put something new on your plate. The first thing you’ll notice is that almost everything comes with injera, a kind of tasty flatbread that graces everything from stews to sandwiches.
You’ll also become accustomed to wat, a soup mixed with meat, vegetables and spices that can be customised for any traveller and/or occasion. And don’t forget the tej: a honey wine that goes with every meal!
Ethiopian culture is some of the most diverse I’ve ever seen. From the galleries of Addis Ababa to the ruins of Aksum, you’ll be staggered by the sheer scope of Ethiopia’s elegance. Take a trip through the streets of Jijiga and enjoy a serene horseback ride to the shores of Lake Shala.
History buffs, you might like to stop by the Churches of Lalibela or the Red Terror Martyrs Memorial Museum. These are real pieces of African culture that speak to Ethiopia’s long and complex foundation, so you won’t want to miss out.
Some scientists believe that we, as Homo sapiens, evolved out of Ethiopia and into the bigger world. That it was quite literally the birthplace of humankind. Even if you don’t believe it, one look at Ethiopia’s grand architecture and exquisite artwork and you’ll be moved all the same.
Over 91 million people call Ethiopia home. Once you arrive, you’ll see why they never leave.