Ethiopia is located in the ‘Horn of Africa’ along the northeast region of the continent and contains more than 70% of Africa’s mountains. Ethiopia, also known as the Cradle of Mankind, is home to the oldest humanoid on earth, the ancient Aksumite Empire, Ark of the Covenant, and countless historical museums and churches including Debre Birhan Selassie I Church.
Ethiopia stands at the forefront of African nations as it was the only African country to withstand European colonization during the ‘Scramble for Africa’ and is a founding member of the United Nations. Addis Ababa, which means ‘New Flower’, is often referred to as the ‘Political Capital of Africa’ as it is the headquarters for the African Union.
The flourishing capital of Ethiopia offers a variety of authentic restaurants, theaters and the burial grounds of Emperor Selassie I. If touring Addis Ababa takes your breath away, just wait until you visit the countless rock-hewn churches in Lalibela and the beautiful castles of Gondar. Traveling to Ethiopia serves as the gateway to all history lessons and books documenting the history of this amazing country, and you will have the front row seat, experiencing this joyous cultural ride.
DAY 1 Arrive in Africa and Unwind: After landing at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport in Ethiopia, your private Away to Africa driver will transport you to your lodging. Today you will have a relaxed day with a traditional Ethiopian meal and tea so you can rest yourself for an early morning flight to Axum tomorrow.
DAY 2 Exploring Axum: After arriving in Axum you will view a variety of sites including: ● Famous Obelisks ● Queen of Sheba’s Bath & Palace ● King Bazen’s Tomb ● St. Mary Zion Church; home to the Ark of the Covenant
DAY 3 Lalibela: Today you will travel to Lalibela, the town known for its elegant architecture and 13 majestic rock-hewn churches. Tonight you will enjoy traditional food coupled with honey wine and dancing to the sounds of Ethiopian.
DAY4: Lalibela Part Deux: Awake for an early breakfast prior to heading out for our second day in Lalibela. We will continue exploring the town of Lalibela and hike to the Roof of Africa. Spend the evening relaxing as you take in the serene mountainous views of Ethiopia.
DAY 5 Castles of Gondar You will depart early morning to drive to the former capital of Ethiopia and ‘Camelot’ of Africa; Gondar. In Gondar, you will explore the city that is recognized throughout the world for its mysterious castles which date back to the early to mid-1600’s.
DAY 6 Lake & Monastery of Bahir Dar: You will explore Bahir Dar with a boat trip on Lake Tana and a visit to the island monastery of Zege Peninsula and Ura Kidane Mehret. Afterwards, you will explore the Blue Nile Falls on the Blue Nile River. Enjoy a relaxing dinner along the lake as you take in the scenery while watching the sunset over the lake.
DAY 7 Relaxation & History in Addis: Enjoy a day of rest and relaxation in Addis Ababa and enjoy some traditional Beyaynetu. After resting for half of the day, we will travel to visit: ● Haile Selassie Cathedral ● National Museum of Ethiopia ● Emperor Menelik and Empress Taitu Museum ● Shopping Center @ Shiromeda Accommodation: Ababa’s Villa Guest House or Sarem International HotelDAY8 Shashamane Today you will travel to Shashamane which represents 500 acres of private land set aside by Emperor Haile Selassie I in order to encourage Rastafarians, Ethiopian World Federation officers and other settlers from Jamaica and Caribbean to relocate in Africa. Afterwards we will relax at the hot springs of Wondo Genet.
DAY 8 Shashamane : Today you will travel to Shashamane which represents 500 acres of private land set aside by Emperor Haile Selassie I in order to encourage Rastafarians, Ethiopian World Federation officers and other settlers from Jamaica and Caribbean to relocate in Africa. Afterward we will relax at the hot springs of Wondo Genet.
DAY 9 Addis Ababa: After breakfast, you will have the opportunity to spend a couple of hours volunteering in the community of Addis Ababa at the Ethiopian Skate Park. Afterwards, you will have the opportunity to go shopping for garments in the shopping district. Enjoy a traditional Ethiopian dinner as you take time to relax and enjoy your last evening in Ethiopia. Accommodation: Ababa’s Villa Guest House or Sarem International Hotel
DAY 10 Depart Mama Africa: Wake up early for an optional early class of yoga to reflect on your life-changing experience in Ethiopia.