Ethiopia is known for its legendary historical sites, including some of the earliest churches known to Christendom in Lalibela and the royal castles of Gondar. You'll explore these sites, as well as Bale Mountains National Park—home to rare Ethiopian wolves and over 300 species of birds—and Simien Mountains National Park, where the engaging gelada baboons reside.
Not to be overlooked in favor of its more well-known southern neighbors, Ethiopia is a land of dream-like safaris, a distinctive cuisine, and two of the world’s oldest Christian and Islamic communities. Cultural heritage is rich and vibrant, with Oromo, Surmi, Afar, Mursi, and Karo customs and rituals largely intact. Of course, it’s the wildlife that reigns supreme here—the rare Ethiopian wolf swaggers across far-reaching highlands and deep into canyons, while the mountain ibex, antelope, and grass-eating gelada monkeys vie for safari-goers’ attention, from the Simien and Bale Mountains to the Danakil Depression. Marvel at Lake Tana, home to historic island monasteries and the spectacular Blue Nile Falls. Visit St. George’s Church, its Greek cross-shaped design a hallmark of Lalibela. And meet the world-famous Lucy at the National Museum, one of sub-Saharan Africa’s most important institutions.