Trip Code: ZET 033
Mode of Transportation: Air &Surface (4WD)

Tour Type : Historic route & Omo Valley
Length: 15 days / 14 nights

Group Size: 1- 20 Participants
Dates: Any date departure

Northern Historic Route & Omo Valley- 15 days tour

Historic Route & Omo Valley- 15 days tour

This is a great itinerary that visits the very best of the northern historical circuit whilst offering a few hidden treasures as well. Starting our tour in Addis we will fly Lalibela to see some of the most rarely seen rock churches. From Lalibela (which for some is considered to be the 8th wonder of the world) we witness Ethiopian Christmas (January 7) .we will fly to Gonder with its medieval castles and then drive up into the wonderful Simien Mountains where we will see the stunning semien mountains. we finally arrive in Bahir Dar for a stroll beneath the Blue Nile Falls and a boat ride on Lake Tana, the source of the Blue Nile.

 This is an extraordinary opportunity to meet some of the more remote ethnic groups of the fascinatingly diverse areas surrounding the Omo River in South West Ethiopia. While the Omo Valley is an area which has been on the “tourist radar” for several years, the vast majority of visitors to the region find themselves unable to escape the “4WD circuit” which has arisen. This comprehensive itinerary visits some of the region’s better known tribes. In this fascinating region we aim to learn about the varied ethnic groups who inhabit the region – from the Mursi, renowned for their lip-plates, the Konso famous for their terraced farming to the Hamer famous for their bull jumping coming of age ceremony. This is a unique itinerary in an unforgettable part of the world.

Day 1: Arrive to Addis Ababa- City tour

Welcome to Ethiopia! Upon arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, you will be welcomed and assisted by your tour guide and driver for the transfer to Hotel After breakfast we have a full-day city tour, which departs at 9:00am from the hotel. Addis Ababa is the third highest capital city in the world. Located at 2,500 metres above sea level in one of the highest parts of the Entoto mountain chain. We take time to explore the city. We will visit the National Museum (home of the remains of the famous hominid fossil, “Lucy”) and the Ethnological Museum at the Addis Ababa University (housed in the former palace of Emperor Haile Selassie). We will also witness the bustle of the one of the colourful local markets, which has an array of fascinating goods and curios, providing a great place for exploration and people watching.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at hotel: –  Lomi Guest house :

Day 2: Fly to Lalibela

Early morning transfer to Bole international airport. You’ll be picked up at Lalibela airport and transferred to your hotel. The short flight to Lalibela transects amazing rust colored canyons and high jagged peaks. At over 8,500 feet the small town of Lalibela is situated high in the Lasta Mountains. Even though Lalibela has been a destination for travelers and pilgrims since the 16th century, the town is remarkably undeveloped. The day is spent exploring the ancient city and its many rock-hewn churches. Lalibela is arguably one of the most important religious and historical sites in Africa, and certainly in the entire Christian world. Although it is not widely known in the west, Ethiopia was the first country to adopt Christianity as a state religion and, due to Ethiopia’s becoming Christian long before the Catholic church was born or instigated the structure we recognize today, the roots of Ethiopian Orthodox religious practices are as recognizably Jewish as they are Christian. The Lalibela churches are said to have been constructed during King Lalibela’s reign in the 12th and 13th centuries when Lalibela (then known as Roha) was the capital of the Zagwe dynasty. Legend has it that King Lalibela was exiled in Jerusalem and returned to Ethiopia to build a New Jerusalem. There are many theories as to how these architecturally very advanced churches were built. In the evening we go to the church to see the eve of Christmas .

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at Sora Lodge

Day 3: Lalibela - Genna - Ethiopian Christmas —January 7

The celebration of Ethiopian Christmas is more unique in the rural area than in the cities especially in Lalibela where it is celebrated colorfully by the priests and the followers. In most rural areas, it is celebrated by various activities like horse race by local people and folk dances of authentic type. A match which looks like European Hockey but typically Ethiopian is conducted between youth teams of two. The game is named after the festival and is called “Yegena–Chewata”

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at Sora Lodge

Day 4: Fly to Gondar

Today at 9:30 you will transfer to airport. Once you have landed in , you will be picked up at Gondar Airport and transferred to your hotel.

Gondar was the first capital city of the Ethiopian empire, which began in 1632 with the reign of Fasilidas. In the city, there are a dozen castles built by various emperors over the course of 236 years. The city seems more European than African and also has Islamic influences. In the afternoon, we visit the palaces, residences and baths of Fasilidas; afterwards, we visit the church of Debre Berhan Selassie (Light of the Trinity), which is located at the summit of a hill and surrounded by fortified walls. The interior is decorated with beautiful frescos.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at hotel Fasil Lodge :

Day 5: Gondar - Semien Mountain -Gondar

Early morning drive up into Africa’s most beautiful highlands, the Simien Mountains. The drive takes about 4 hours on packed gravel roads amidst stunning scenery. The Simien Mountains not only offer amazing vistas and panoramic views, but the area is also critical habitat of several of Ethiopia’s endemic species: the walia ibex, the gelada baboon, and the rare Ethiopian wolf. Other resident mammals include rock hyraxes, jackals, bushbuck and klipspringers. Ras Dashen, the fourth highest peak in Africa, rises to 4,620 meters amongst several other impressive peaks. Drive back to Gondar late afternoon.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at hotel Fasil Lodge:

Day 6: Drive to Bahir Dar

Depart this morning for the three hour drive to Bahirdar, passing rural villages over mountain passes with stunning vistas to get your first glimpse of the impressive lake Tana monasteries. After we check in hotel and freshen up explore Lakr Tana . will make boat cruise over Lake Tana to visit the ancient 14th century island monasteries of Lake Tana. The 37 islands of Lake Tana shelter twenty monasteries-surviving remnants of an old, contemplative tradition. Because of their isolation, they were used to store treasures and religious relics from all parts of the country. The Lake’s monasteries are famous for their typical Ethiopian religious paintings, illuminated manuscripts, and other ancient church treasures. The monasteries that we are going to visit include Kibran Gebriel, Ura Kidane Mihret and Azua Mariam.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at hotel: –  Bete Daniel hotel: –

DAY 7: Fly to Addis Ababa- Awassa

After a morning flight back to Addis Ababa, we begin our six-hour journey, by 4X4 vehicle, through southern Ethiopia to the Rift Valley Lakes region. As we skirt the shores of lakes Shala, Abiata, and Langano, we’ll take in extraordinary views while spotting aquatic birds and other wildlife. Our destination is a beautiful resort on Lake Awasa.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at hotel. Oasis hotel:

Day 8 : Drive to Arbaminch

Morning visits the fish market which is very active during this time of the day and we drive to Arbaminch via Dorze . we pass through Chencha village to visit Dorze people. Among their very interesting cultures are their houses built from bamboo way of life and cultivation of the false banana (from which they extract their local bread, called Kotcho).

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at Ezana Hotel: :

Day 9 : Arbaminch

Morning visit the Netch Sar Park with spectacular views over the lakes and different mammals, as the endemic Swaynes Hartebeest, Zebras, lesser Kudu, and others. Back lunch Arbaminch. Afternoon make a boat trip on Chamo. Admire crocodiles and hippos (here crocodiles are some of the longest in Africa, with length of 6 and also above meters).

In the morning we visit the Nech-Sar Park. Nech-Sar located between lakes Chamo and Abaya, where one can see gazelles and zebras. Then we proceed to returning northwards the rift valley lakes. The Rift Valley is a deep fission that extends for over 6,000 km from the Middle East to Mozambique — testimony to the (most recent) violent and massive shifting of the earth’

s tectonic plates. The rift contains a marvelous series of lakes, which are teeming with fish and provide a habitat for hundreds of species of birds,

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay Ezana Hotel: :

Day 10: Drive to Jinka

Drive to Jinka, Admiring on the way the interesting Konso, Derashe, Ari, Benna and Tsemay People, very famous for hairstyles, their unique culture and traditions, as the ornaments all over their body. Konso people famous for their terracing agricultural works ad villages’

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at Orit Hotel

Day 11: Jinka

Mago-Mago National Park of is located on the east bank of the river Omo and ranges in altitude from 450 to 2,528 meters above sea level. After about 2 hours of rough road, we arrive to the camp where we spend the night in a tent. The campsite is in a beautiful clearing among towering trees, which provide shade, and near the river Neri. We visit the Mursi village, whose women have the custom of expanding their lower lips using disks that gradually get larger and larger. These are people who farm the land and breed livestock; they live in almost complete isolation from the rest of the world. We return to the camp; there are not many animals visible during the day in the park, but by night we are surrounded by thousands of sounds, among which is the trumpeting of elephants. Overnight and dinner is in a camp.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay at Orit Hotel

Day 12: Drive to Turmi

Today we visit a colourful local market and mingle with different tribes like the Karo, Hamer and Benna. There are many interesting handicrafts to be found too – don’t forget to bargain. Hopefully we will also be invited into a couple of homes.

Dimeka is the principal town in Hamer country, with an impressive market on Saturdays, where Hamer villagers make their way to from miles around. Dimeka borders different tribal areas, and you’re likely to encounter several different tribes mingling together in the market. A visit to one of the villages in the area is also rewarding; made entirely of mud, the small thatched huts are tidily arranged with very few outside influences to be seen, offering a glimpse into another way of life. Covering a large territory, the Dassanech people who live along the western banks of the Omo River, having been forced out of the Turkana region by conflict in the 18th century. Originally nomadic pastoralists, the more fertile surroundings of the Omo River has caused them to put down more permanent roots based around fishing and agriculture. The Daasanach live in small huts that befit their nomadic origins, as they could be easily and quickly dismantled. Today we visit the Daasanach cultural before returning in the afternoon to Turmi and spend the night campingCovering a large territory, the Dassanech people who live along the western banks of the Omo River, having been forced out of the Turkana region by conflict in the 18th century. Originally nomadic pastoralists, the more fertile surroundings of the Omo River has caused them to put down more permanent roots based around fishing and agriculture. The Daasanach live in small huts that befit their nomadic origins, as they could be easily and quickly dismantled. Today we visit the Daasanach cultural before returning in the afternoon to Turmi to spend the night.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight at Buska Lodge:

Day 13: Turmi -Omorate

continue through the savannah along tracks that are barely visible, passing through a vast meadowland with shrubs and umbellifers (‘umbrella’acacia trees). We pass through the village of Omorate on the Omo River. We encounter the Galeb people in the street; in the river people bathe and wash their clothes. We arrive to Turmi and camp in a square under mango trees. The Hammer people gather water from a nearby well and carry it off to their villages. Dinner and overnight stay Evangadi Lodge

Meal: breakfast

Overnight at Buska Lodge:

Day 14: Return to Arba Minch

We drive to Konso via Woito, The road continues into the savannah, running alongside the mountains of Men, and then rises up the Karkerte Mountains — providing splendid panoramic views — until it reaches the soft, terraced hills of Konso. On the way we visit the interesting Derase, Ari, Benna and Tsemay people, very famous for hairstyles, their unique culture and traditions, as the ornaments all over their body and Konso people famous for their terracing agricultural works and villages’traditions. Proceed driving to Arbaminch along the side of Lake Chamo, we visit Lake Chamo. We have dinner and stay in the same hotel as previously.

Meal: breakfast

Overnight stay Ezana Hotel: :

Day 15: Drive to Addis Ababan to Arba Minch

After an early breakfast, we drive north via Chencha, stopping to visit with the Dorze tribe and arriving back in Addis Ababa in time for dinner.

In the evening before departure, you will be invited a farewell dinner party at one of the best traditional restaurants in Addis where you taste variety of Ethiopian meals, and watch the folkloric dancers of the Ethiopian people.

End of Tour Departure

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Zagwe Tour Ethiopia


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  • 2 Participants USD 1,932 p/p
  • 4 Participants USD 1,891 p/p
  • 6 Participants USD 1,874p/p
  • Single Supplement: USD 645

 The above flight rate will only apply if arrival into Ethiopia was done with the Ethiopian Airlines.

Price inclusive of:-

  • Accommodation on Double basis upon request Twin room can be book.
  • All ground transportations with fuel/ Ground transportation by a newest model air conditioned 4WD to omo valley and bus to Historic route/
  • 3 Domestic airfare ( Addis — Lalibela — Gondar —and Bahirdar to Addis )
  • Private vehicles with driver (road tax, parking, vehicle and driver insurance, accommodation of the driver and allowance)
  • The services of escort guide qualified in English can be available during the whole voyage upon request with extra payment (Professional English speaking Guide)
  • Services of local guides during site visits;
  • All accommodations as described in the itinerary
  • 15 breakfast
  • Airport Transfers
  • City transfer
  • All entrance fees as per the program
  • Boat trip on Lake Tana and Chamo
  • 0 Bull Jumping Ceremony
  • Government T ax
  • Scouts and so on

 Price exclusive of: –

  • International airfare
  • Any alcoholic drinks
  • Personal expense like souvenirs, laundry, etc
  • Meals (Lunch and Dinner  )


  • Any expense which is not stated in the ‘ Included List’ above
  • Visa expenses.
  • Video or photographing fees or tips at different sites. – Any alcoholic beverages and any personal item expense

Essential information

Plan your trip

Getting around Ethiopia– flying- most short term visitors use internal flights in Ethiopia. There are reliable daily flights between most of the stops on the Northern Circuit (Addis, Gondar, Lalibella, Axum, Bahir Dar).

If you have more time, or delight in the joys of overland travel, we can provide you vehicles (4WD, minibus and coaster bus )

Road: The best way to experience the variety of scenery Ethiopia has to offer is travel by road.  Ethiopia’s road network has improved substantially in the past decade or so thanks to an extensive road maintenance programand  many roads are become an asphalt.

There are a several highways in Ethiopia, majority of the roads are in good condition:

The major roads leading out from Addis Ababa are tar-sealed, all-weather roads along all (or most of) their routes. Many minor roads are paved and traversing them can be comfortable.

 By car: -A good way to tour Ethiopia is by car. They can take you off the beaten track so you can see the beauty and attractions of Ethiopia.

We use reliable and well maintained Toyota Landcruisers, Buses and minibuses throughout the entirety of this tour and our drivers are chosen by us for their skills, their safety, their experience and their good nature. The main roads in Ethiopia are often newly tarmaced and facilitate comfort and efficiency. But this tour frequently goes off-piste to explore much more unusual areas, making the comfort and quality of our vehicles of utmost importance.

Vehicles /Transport:  During the course of your trip, we will use a variety of vehicles, all which are fit for purpose and the conditions encountered.We will be using a 4WD Toyota land cruiser, mini buses or coater buses depending on the condition of the road and the size of the group.

These land cruisers can accommodate four to five participants. Travelling in Ethiopia is a great adventure and needs much patience and flexibility. The quality of the bus is not always comparable with the standards that you are used to in the West

Travel documents (Passport and Visa requirements)

Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months after having left Ethiopia. Also keep in mind that your passport needs at least 2 consecutive blank pages. A photocopy of your passport is a great idea (keep it somewhere separate in your luggage).

At present, a visa is required for entry as a tourist into Ethiopia. You should apply to your nearest Ethiopian embassy . For some nationalities it’s possible to obtain a tourist visa on arrival into Addis Ababa airport, visitors will need to bring two recent passport-sized photographs. Please check the visa requirements for your country well in advance of travel as they can of course change at any moment.

Upon request we arrange visas for our travellers, or if an invitation letter is necessary then we will arrange this for you.

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements

Climate:-Ethiopia is generally pleasant and warm, but varies with altitude. The long rains usually arrive mid- June to early September. After the rains, the highlands of northern Ethiopia are usually green and thus particularly scenic. The temperature all year round rarely falls below 18°C. Night-time temperatures in the mountains can be cold and can drop below freezing at higher altitude.

Temperature variations in the lowlands (Arba Minch, Konso,Turmi) are considerable (19 C – 30 C). Heavy rainfall occurs in most of the country during June, July, and August. However, average annual precipitation in the south is rare, erratic and a paltry 80 cm (30 in) per annum.

When to go –All year round

Accommodation: Currently, Ethiopia is known for its fine andluxurious hotels and Lodges . Reliable hot showers are generally speaking still a luxury and places with genuine charm are available. All accommodation throughout this tour is 2 -4 star (comfortable hotels with en-suite facilities) accommodation is based on twin sharing but single supplements are not compulsory. If you prefer not to pay a single supplement we’ll pair you with someone else of the same sex for you to share with throughout the trip. Single rooms are available  (at an extra cost)   But these must be booked  and paid in Advance.

Food: – Hotel meals are generally good and full of Local dishes tend to be very good if you like hot, spicy food although milder versions can be requested.

All food on trek is cooked for you and, although local produce can be a bit limited in the mountains, it is usually of a high standard. Vegetarians can be catered for, though you may find the diet somewhat limited. Clients who have specialist dietary requirements must contact us to discuss if they can be accommodated. you will have a private cook for your trek who will provide breakfast, packed lunch, tea and dinner each day. The food is great, and given most Westerners aversion to the Ethiopian stapleInjurra, mostly of the Western variety. t bread and pancakes / eggs for breakfast, filling sandwiches for lunch, herbal teas, fantastic coffee and popcorn at the end of a long days trekking and then a massive meal to end the day with soup starter and a hearty main with plenty of veg to finish.

Small Rucksack/Daysac

During the course of a trekking day, you do not have access to the luggage that is being carried for you by the porters. In any mountain region the weather can change rapidly and you must be equipped for this eventuality. Your daysac should, therefore, be large enough to carry the following: waterproofs, sweater, long trousers (if walking in shorts), warm hat and gloves, sun hat, sun cream, water bottle (at least 2litre), tissues and your packed lunch. Most people normally find that this adds up to about 2 to 3kg. Camera equipment can be heavy so think carefully when deciding what to take. Other optional items in a daysac might be binoculars, a diary or a book to read at lunch time. It is usually more comfortable to carry a slightly larger pack that is not full than to carry a small pack that is overfull or with ‘bits’ tied on the outside. Something between 20 and 25 litres capacity is probably the most suitable. A shoulder bag is not a practical alternative.

Plastic Bags

Luggage:- 15Kg

Difficulty: This tour is not strenuous. Visits to the markets, villages and different tribes are very sedate, calm and relaxed requiring no great levels of fitness. There is however a fair bit of driving on gravel roads.

Private groups: The adventures featured in our itinerary are just a starting point for many of our private group travellers. Working closely with our Groups Department we can organize custom designed itineraries for groups of friends, clubs, charity’s, schools or even work colleagues. Our team will assist you with all aspects of your private group adventure from itinerary design to group flights. For group traveller pledge considerable discount.

Customized tours: On request, this tour can be customized for small groups.

Proceeding / additional days: It’s no problem to add days before or after the expedition and we’ll book these for you. If you bring more time, you could do day trips from Addis or take an extension tour

Group booking discount: If at least 5 people together book this trip, 6% discount is given.

Please remember that all Zagwe Ethiopia tour prices mean NO hidden extras, NO local payments.

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Contact us

  •   1km away from Bole airport, Addis Ababa

  •    Office:251-118-100025

  •    Fax:251-118-100025

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