Northern Historic Route

Bahar Dar-Gondar-Lalibela-Axum

6 Days

Day One – Addis Ababa (The new Flower)

In the morning transfer from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport to hotel. Addis Ababa means New Flower and it is the undisputed Diplomatic Capital city of Africa. Headquarters of the African Union (AU) and the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) are located in Addis. The journey starts with a tour of the capital city. In the afternoon, continue with a visit to the National Museum and then to the Ethnographic Museum to see the different lifestyles of the major Ethiopian ethnic groups. Overnight at your hotel

Day Two – Bahar Dar (Lakeside Town)

Early in the morning a one-hour flight takes you to Bahar Dar. Then, after a 30-minute drive and a short walk you arrive at the falls on the Blue Nile River, locally known as Tis Isat – “Smoke of Fire”. The Blue Nile Falls offer a spectacular view of the falls cascading down 45 metres (150 feet), across a stretch of river some 400 metrers wide. An intense stream of vapour - almost a fog - surrounds the waterfall and anyone within a Kilometre distance can feel the impact of the moisture. After lunch a boat trip on Lake Tana will take you on a visit to ancient monasteries. (Women are not allowed to enter the Kibran Gabriel monastery). Overnight at your hotel.

Day Three Gondar

After breakfast and half leisure day at Bahirdar you will drive to Gondar, known as the “Camelot” of Africa and located approximately 468 Miles or 750 Km North West of Addis Ababa.  Gondar became the capital city of Ethiopia during the reign of Emperor Fasilidas (1632 to 1667) who built the first castle. This day you will visit the outskirts of the city.  The bathing palace of Emperor Fasilidas is another impressive sight for visitors. Dinner and overnight at your hotel

Day Four - Lalibela (The Eighth Wonder of the World)

Before lunch you will fly to Lalibela and, on arrival, transfer to the hotel for lunch. After lunch, visit the famous rock-hewn churches. The then-renowned King Lalibela with his tenants excavated the astonishing eleven rock-hewn churches from the pink granite bedrock of Roha Mountain in the 13th century. The churches are divided into two groups characterising the location of River Jordan and are interconnected by underground tunnels. Now Lalibela is classified as the eighth wonder of the world and protected by UNESCO. It is considered a holy shrine city by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church followers and the rock-hewn churches are still places of active worship. Overnight at your hotel.

Day Five Axum (Mysterious Monoliths)

Late in the morning you fly to Axum from Lalibela. On arrival in Axum after a few hours of relaxation and lunch at your hotel, you will have an afternoon visit to the legendary stele. Axum is the historical and religious heart of Ethiopia and once was the capital city of the long-standing Axumite Kingdom. The ruins still visible in Axum stand as a testimony to an exceptionally high level of civilization, notably the stone monoliths that are dotted throughout the city and are among the most mysterious monuments in the world. The largest monolith in the world, which weighs 500 tons and is 33 metres long, is still on site. Very recently one of the steles, which was stolen by Mussolini of Italy in the 1930s, was returned to Axum. The following day you visit Axum’s Church of St. Mary of Zion where the original Ark of the Covenant is said to be housed, and which was brought to Ethiopia by Menelik Firs, son of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon, on his return trip from Jerusalem. Overnight at your hotel.

Day sixth Addis Ababa (The new Flower)

Fly Back to Addis Ababa for an enjoyable final day, including shopping at the largest open market in Africa – the Mercato – before you depart.

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