WHY IT'S DIFFERENT?
Northern Ethiopia offers some of the best hiking in Africa combined with fascinating culture and tradition and of course the gelada monkeys.
The Mountain Scenery
With Ethiopia or the "roof of Africa", containing 70% of Africa's mountains, you can't fail to notice just how beautiful and vast the landscape is and with such contrasting scenery it's hard to comprehend it's all in one country.
The Gelada Monkeys
Troops of up to a few hundred monkeys roam the meadows of the Simien mountains. The gelada baboon, also known as the ‘bleeding heart’ baboon for the distinctive bright red marks stamped onto their chests.
The Rock-Hewn Churches
Lalibela’s extraordinary UNESCO rock-hewn churches is a unique experience and it's difficult not to be impressed with manor in which they were built. There are 11 medieval churches, you'll be taken to the most impressive.
Coffee originated in Ethiopia, with the first coffee plant believed to come from Harar. It's now ingrained in Ethiopian culture and you will experience a coffee ceremony which is interesting and tasty in equal measure.
“We had a fabulous time in the northern region of Ethiopia with Shigo. Tigray and the Simiens offered some truly amazing hiking and we loved our time with the monkeys."
Simon Smith - Guest
Ethiopia is a country with so much variation and contrast, the perfect mix of stunning landscapes, culture, wildlife and amazing people. Travel to the Simien Mountains, sit amongst its Gelada monkeys, explore the 12th century Rock Hewn Churches of Lalibela and Tigray. A country beautiful in so many ways complemented by the some of the friendliest people you’ll meet and breathtaking scenery – an unforgettable experience.
NEED TO KNOW
|GROUP SIZE||8 people|
|FLIGHTS||For more information on flights from the UK please refer to the Trip Details section.|
|VISA||UK, EU & US required|
Arrive in Addis Ababa and transfer to your hotel for a rest, followed by lunch. Afternoon visit to the National History Museum where you will see primitive human remains believed to be 3.2 million years old and Red Terror Museum, a memorial to the martyrs of the Derg regime.
Morning transfer to Addis airport for your flight to Mekele beforing transfering to Hawzen for lunch. Optional afternoon hike up to one of the many hidden mountain Rock Hewn Churches.
Day at your leisure with optional hikes either side of lunch or a long hike with a picnic lunch.
Transfer to Axum, the home of the Ark of the Covenant, optional Church & Stelae Tour.
Morning transfer to Debark for lunch. Transfer to the Simien Mountains to hike along the ridge and spend the afternoon with the Gelada monkeys.
Optional morning trek, lunch at your hotel. Afternoon transfer to Gondar, evening at your leisure.
Morning transfer to the airport before flying to Lalibela. Afternoon tour of the Unesco Rock Hewn Churches dating as far back as the 12th century.
Morning transfer to the airport for your flight to Addis Ababa. Dinner in town before returning to the airport for your evening flight.
A selection of our accommodation, which is subject to availability, however alternatives are always of a similar price, grade and location.
All our hotels are conveniently located near the main sights and close to the airport giving you more time to relax when not exploring.
Typical Accommodation: Hotel Hub or similar
Our selection of comfortable hotels are perfect for relaxing after an afternoon drive and a morning hiking in the Simien mountains.
Typical Accommodation: Mayleko Lodge or similar
Either located in the National Park or by the entrance we choose from the very best on offer. The more intrepid you can even camp in the park.
Typical Accommodation: Semien Mountain Lodge or similar
This religious city is rumoured to house the Ark of the Covenant, this is disputed by many outside of Ethiopia, especially as it's not on public display.
Typical Accommodation: Sabean Hotel or similar
Situated in the most northern region of Tigray, Hawzen is the perfect location to explore the stunning landscape and hidden churches.
Typical Accommodation: Gheralta Lodge or similar
Our hotels are situated on a ridge overlooking the plains below, just a short transfer from the UNESCO rock-hewn churches.
Typical Accommodation: Maribela Hotel or similar
With all our selection of hotels comfortable and central, they are perfect for relaxing after a long day travelling.
Typical Accommodation: Debre Amo Guest House or similar
WHERE YOU'RE GOING
When you think of Ethiopia, you may be inundated with images of extreme poverty set against an unforgiving desert landscape ravaged by war. Put the preconceptions aside, however, and you’ll discover a colourful nation that stands apart from every other country on the African continent. Along with being the only African country to have resisted colonisation, scientists have declared Ethiopia to have been the beginning of mankind thanks to the discovery of the 3.5 million year old fossils from ‘Lucy’, the first human being on record. Ethiopia rests on a plateau at 2,500 metres above sea level and boasts staggering landscapes rich in natural beauty with gushing waterfalls and winding rivers set amongst fertile highlands and the flat-topped peaks of the vast Simien Mountains.
"Hiking boots are essential but it's also important to bring warm clothes as it can get very cold in the mountains."
Shigo - Untravelled Paths
Be sure to wash your hands regularly to ensure you don't catch or pass on germs as hygiene standards aren't as high as they could be. On such a busy adventure you don't want to be unwell.
We work hard to maintain mutual respect between local and visitor to ensure an authentic visit, so we ask that you avoid giving gifts to the locals, you donate by visiting.
As a UK / EU passport holder you can get an e-visa or obtain one on arrival. However as rules tend to change fairly regularly it's always prudent to double check as one of our team can testify!
Ethiopia does require vaccinations, so please book an appointment with your nearest clinic. Some take time to take effect, so be sure to allow plenty of time before departure.SEE MORE
As a tour operator we are not able to offer inclusive flights as part of our experiences however we are more than happy to help you find the most appropriate incoming and outgoing flights for you. All the listed airports fly in and out of Addis Ababa with multiple different airlines to choose from. We highly recommend using Ethiopian Airlines as they are very affordable, the only airline that flies direct and most importantly will give you up to a 50% discount on internal flights if you have booked your international flight with them. They are the only domestic carrier in Ethiopia.
Internal flights typically cost £100 - £150 per person for all the connections listed above. We can reserve your international flights and domestic flights for you, provide a quote and then you simply call the reservations centre and they will take your payment.
In order to be fully covered on your trip should anything happen, we suggest getting an insurance before you travel. We recommend True Traveller, designed especially for adventure travel, who will be able to tailor an insurance package based on your needs. You can find out more here.
Our prices are based on people sharing, for solo travellers who would prefer a private room the price per person will include a solo occupancy fee.
If you wish we can also organise extra nights at either end of your trip for you.
Book your trip in a few easy steps.
Once you’ve chosen the dates you’d like to travel on using our availability calendar all you need to do is head over to the booking page and fill in the enquiry form.
BOOK YOUR FLIGHTS
We will get back to you answering any questions you might have and confirming availability. If all is good, we can hold the places for you for 48 hours while you book your flights. Please note that this stage does not represent a guarantee of the booking.
Once you have made your necessary arrangements, we will send you a booking form you will need to fill in with your details and any other relevant information.
PAY FOR YOUR TRIP
As you fill in the booking form, you will also be asked to make the payment through a secure link; if you are travelling in less than 8 weeks, the payment will be paid in full, otherwise only a 35% deposit will be taken.
Shortly after you pay, you will receive a confirmation invoice, followed by a personalised itinerary and digital booklet. All you need to do now is write the dates in your diary, prepare your packing list and look forward to your next adventure!
Please note deposit is non-refundable. The balance will only be refundable if you cancel with more than 8 weeks in advance. More information about the cancellation policy can be found in our Terms & Conditions. We highly suggest getting insurance before you travel to avoid any problems. Our personal recommendation is using True Traveller.