Spotlight on Ethiopia
Ethiopia, long ago known as the cradle of humanity, is a country rich in ancient history, adventure and epic landscapes. It is the only African country that has never been colonised and is unlike anywhere else in Africa: it has its own calendar, script, and the oldest national Christian church in the world, the Ethiopian Orthodox church.
Ethiopia’s unique landscape is spectacular and offers countless opportunities to interact with wildlife through trekking, walks and scenic drives. Waterfalls cascade over the scorched earth of jagged mountain ranges including the Simien Mountains and Bale Mountains. Sheer cliffs, deserts and remote lowlands boast birds and animals seen nowhere else on earth including the ‘bleeding heart’ baboon and the endangered Ethiopian Wolf. It is also one of Africa’s greatest cultural destinations, with no fewer than eight UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the mystical rock-hewn churches of Lalibela.
The Omo Valley in Ethiopia’s remote south is Africa’s last frontier. It is home to fascinating tribes and is still a place ruled by ancient cultural traditions, rituals and ceremonies that have existed for over a thousand years.
When to go:
September to February is best: the northern highlands are green and fertile after the long rains, and although the nights are cold the days are warm. March to May is Ethiopian autumn, with some rain. May is the hottest month. June, July and August comprise the rainy season.