Sacred Destinations and Festivals



Ethiopia is often described as the land of God and mystery. Ethiopia uniquely remained with her original name, territorial integrity, national unity and her Christian faith. There are numerous sacred places in Ethiopia – churches, monasteries, sites for religious festivals and holy water. All these highly Christian venerated places began with the first St. Mary Church of Zion.

Ethiopia is a land where religion plays such an important part in many people’s lifestyles, so the numerous annual festivals and ceremonies provide many high points to the Ethiopian Calendar.

Click here to read more about Ethiopia’s sacred destinations and festivals.

Duration: 16 Days / 15 Nights (Air/Road)
Destinations: Addis Ababa – Harar- Langano - Chencha - Arbaminch- Konso –Jinka- Omo River Valley– Addiss Ababa- Bahar Dar / Lake Tana- Lalibela- Axum-Hidar Tsion Celebration- Addis Ababa

Day 1:Arrive in Addis and be met by our representative and transferred to hotel. Later, have a Highlights tour of the Addis Ababa city-the view from Mount Entoto, the National and the Anthropological Museums, the Trinity Cathedral and Mercato. This evening we gather for an orientation in the hotel. Hotel

Day 2: In the early morning, we fly to Dire Dawa and drive to the ancient fortified city of Harar, with its thousand-year-old city walls. We explore Harar’s vibrant markets and witness an evening performance of the “ hyena men.” Hotel

Day 3: Today we fly back to Addis Ababa and drive southwest through the Rift valley towards Ethiopia’s fantastic tribal country, with a visit to Lake Abiyata-Shalla National Park. The sandy beach of the golden Lake Langano offers a great relaxing moment while a swim in the bilharzias free Lake Langano is immensely refreshing. Hotel

Day 4: Early in the morning, we drive to the scenic mountain village of Chencha, which is home for the industrious Dorze people. Chencha’s located high up in the Guge Mountains where you will visit the people’s fine weaving craft and igloo-shaped bamboo houses. After lunch, we drive south to Arba minch and check into our hotel or lodge, which will have a panoramic view of Nech Sar National Park and its two lakes, Chamo and Abaya. If time permits us, we will enjoy a walk to a scenic local area of forty springs, which the name of the town is driven from. Lodge

Day 5: Today’s drive will take us to a scenic wonderland and a tribal kaleidoscope of communities. We visit a small Konso village as well as the Tsemay people around Weyto River. After lunch, we visit villages of Bena and Ari people. Later afternoon arrival in Jinka, set at the foot of Mago National park. Lodge

Day 6-8: In the bushy savanna of the Omo River Valley live a fascinating mix of nomadic and semi nomadic tribes, from the Bume and Karo to the Bena and Hamer, coexisting in a harsh land that is all but forgotten by the rest of the world. From our base at Turmi or murulle omo explorer’s lodge, we make daily excursions to visit villages and meet a wide variety of tribal peoples. Camping at a lodge

Day 9: Today, driving back to Arba Minch via Arebore and Konso, we will have a stopover at Arebore to visit the tribal people who are semi-nomadic pastoralists. They are known for their different dressing styles. We then visit a geological formation near a Konso village which really looks like a set of beautiful skyscrapers and is named New York but its real local name is Gesergio. Additionally, we will have a chance to visit one of the villages with the so-called Generation Stone and see a standing carved wood sculpture (Waga) on the tomb side. The Cultural Landscape of Konso is a newly inscribed UNESCO World Heritage Site. Proceeding to Arba Minch, we will visit the Nech Sar National Park, which lies between Lakes Abaya and Chamo. The park is inhabited by beautiful mammals such as the Burchell’s Zebra, greater grants gazelle and the endangered Swayne’s hartebeest; it is also home to incredible variety of Ethiopian bird life. Lodge

Day 10: Today, we fly back to Addis Ababa. The rest of the day, at leisure or shopping at craft centers on the heart of the city. Hotel

Day 11: We will have our morning flight to Bahar Dar, where we check into our reserved hotel, set on the shore of Lake Tana amid beautiful gardens and birdlife. Today and tomorrow, we enjoy a boat excursion on Lake Tana, visiting a church to meet a deacon and a priest to learn about the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, and also take an excursion out to an island monastery. Hotel

Day 12: A morning flight takes us to Lalibela, where we spend a memorable day exploring the marvels of the Rock-hewn churches of Lalibela – a World Heritage Site and often described as the works of Angels. Hotl

Day 13: We fly to Axum and after lunch, make an afternoon visit to the church of St. Mary of Zion, where, according to Ethiopian legend, the Ark of the Covenant resides within a special chapel. In the evening, we enjoy Hidar Tsion Eve festivities. Hotel

Day 14: Today we watch the processions and celebrations of the main Hidar Tsion Day at the church of St. Mary of Zion. Hotel

Day 15: Today, we fly back to Addis Ababa. The rest of the day, at leisure or some optional sightseeing. Hotel

Day 16: This morning, we will have a waking tour of Addis Ababa, viewing street life, shopping, etc. After lunch (on your own), the afternoon is free until we have a farewell dinner at a traditional restaurant, followed by folkloric music and dances. Then it will be time for transfer to the airport to connect with the recommended flight home. Day rooms will be held for you at hotel