Harar And The Danakil Depression
- 11 days
11 Days 10 Nights
This tour takes in one of the most in hospitable placeson earth the Erta’Ale volcano and also the Danakil Desert. Notonly is this desert region the lowest, it is also the hottest,inhabited location on earth.Spectacular scenery awaits you at Erta’Ale volcano, Erta’Alemeaning smoking mountain.and you will also visit ancient city of Harar . and visit a little bird spotting in the AwashNational Park (there are over 462 species here) whilstenjoying a safari on the look out for the numerous animals tobe found here. You may also be lucky enough to spot leopards,lions, Black-Backed and Golden Jackals, Caracals, Servalsand Wildcats.Meet the people of the Afar region and see how rock salt ismined on the vast Lake Afdera.
Upon arrival in Addis Ababa, meet our representatives and transferto the given Hotel. During the day, visit historical sites in AddisAbaba including the National Archaeological Museum, where wewill view the 3.2 million year old remains of “Lucy”, whose skeletalremains when discovered in 1974. You will also visit the HolyTrinity Cathedrals and Mount Entoto which rises up to an altitudeof 3,200 meters and offers the panoramic view of the metropolis.Overnight hotel
Fly to Dire Dawa
Meet your vehicles and proceed to Harar. Onthe way visit the chad market at Awedae. Afternoon visit of Harar:the mosques, city walls, the basket production, the markets,French poet Rimbaud house, and more. Evening visit a manfeeding wild hyenas, at the doors of the town. Overnight Hara (hotel).
Awash National Park
Drive to the Awash National Park, visiting Afar people on theway. At the park admire a very nice flora & fauna (Oryx, lesserkudu, dik-dik, crocodiles, hippos, many birds & more), the Awashriver falls + the river gorge & more. Overnight Awash ( hotel).
This morning we will make a visit to the Palmspring where it is possible to see warthogs, beforedriving onto Semera, which is the capital city forthe Afar people.
Drive from Semera to Afdera, entering the Danakildepression, viewing the volcanic rock andincredible, barren, yet stunning scenery of thedesert. There are some excellent stretches ofproperly tarmacked road which is in vast contrastto the tin hut villages you will see along the way.Where the roads are not completed, the cameltrains continue to transport the salt that is mined inthis area. Up on arrival visit the salt extractionprocess on Lake Afdera (also known at Giulietti).Rock salt has been extracted from this lake formany centuries and it is estimated that there aresome 290million tons here. This is an incrediblesight and you can see the salt fields dotted aroundthe lake for miles. This depression lies some 100metres below sea level.
Following breakfast today, we will drive fromAfdera to Dodom or Kusreyat (depending on localfactors). In the evening, we trek up to themountains to visit the active volcano of Erta’alewhich is one of the few volcanoes in the world withdramatic scene.
Trek back to Dodom and drive to Dallol, the lowestpoint on earth. Again, this offers some stunningscenery of land carpeted with the sulphur.
Visit to the Lake Assale, situated between theborder of Ethiopia and Djibouti. Salt has beenexported from here for centuries too and caravansof camels make the journey from here to all overEthiopia and beyond with their cargo.
Drive from Dallol to Mekelle. En route visit one ofthe many camel caravans and take in thespectacular scenery along the road.
Following breakfast this morning, we will drive toKombolcha where you can view the stunningmountain chains at Ambalage. There will be a visitto the Estefanos monastery (which is only open tomen) and the Palace of Ras Mikael Sihul in Desse.
Drive back to Addis Ababa via the mouth of RiftValley system at Tarmaber and the lush landscapeof the Shoan Plateau. Even from the main road, the views from the various vantage points are awe-inspiring and you will also see large troops ofgelada baboons endemic to Ethiopia- with the dramatic “lions” mane of the adult males. In theevening you will be taken to traditional restaurant which show cases a traditional dancing show. Later you will transfer to the airport for the home flight.
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