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Ethiopia Travel Guide

Ethiopia — Attractions

Ethiopia’s assortment of attractions is unmatched in Africa. More than natural wonders, the country is steeped in rich culture and heritage, as seen by its stunning collection of ancient architecture that holds both artistic prominence and historical importance. The city of Axum is a must-see, but equally stunning old churches and cathedrals can be found in the capital of, Addis Ababa. The beauty of the Ethiopian geography is best appreciated through a trek around the mountainous terrain, the ever famous crater lake, and the Danakil Depression.

Saint George Cathedral

One of the most prominent religious sites in Ethiopia, this 19th century cathedral is known for its peculiar octagonal layout and elaborate design. It was the site for the coronation of Emperor Haile Selassie in 1930, and his throne is still displayed inside for visitors to admire. A beautifully carved statue adorns the outside of the church, representing a martyr who lost his life during the war.
Address: Fitawrari Gebeyehu Street, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Holy Trinity Cathedral

This lovely cathedral was built during the pre-Italian occupation period, and was revived after the Mussolini regime, dedicated to those who lost their lives during the dark period. The cathedral is also home to the tombs of the late Emperor Haile Selassie and his wife Empress Menen, so many locals simply refer to the inconic building as Haile Selassie Church.
Address: Niger Street, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Old Cathedral of St. Mary of Zion and Treasury

One of the most picturesque religious constructions in Axum, this 17th century cathedral is said to be the secret hiding place of the Ark of the Covenant. While not available for public viewing, the chapel’s stunning architecture is reason enough to pay it a visit.
Address: Axum, Ethiopia
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Fasil Ghebbi

A recognized UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Royal Enclosure is a huge walled complex made up of a number of old-world palaces and castles. Most of the constructions date back to the mid 17th century, some restored and some stunningly still in ruins.
Address: Gondar, Ethiopia
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Axum Obelisks

To this day, the story behind the towering obelisk pillars remains a mystery as to who built them and why they were constructed. It is believed to be a memorial site for the ancient rulers of Ethiopia about 5,000 years ago, but whatever the reason, the mysterious monoliths are photo-worthy for sure.
Address: Axum, Ethiopia
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Labella

In addition to the cities of Addis Ababa, Axum and Gondar, Lalibela is another must-see town for its remarkable rock-hewn churches dating back to the 12th century and even older. The Church of Saint George is especially popular, as it is believed to be the largest of its kind in the world.
Address: Lalibela, Ethiopia
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Menelik II Square

One of the most visited landmarks in the Ethiopia capital, this historic square is located right outside St. George’s Cathedral and features a statue of Emperor Menelik II, the original founder of the city.
Address: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Lion of Judah Monument

The Lion of Judah statue is hard to miss, being one of the most recognized monuments in Addis Ababa.Located in front of the rail station, it was erected as part of the imperial coronation back in 1930.
Address: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Stones of Tiya

These obelisks makeup part of a UNESCO World Heritage site, consisting of 36 stales and stones decorated with intricate carvings and engravings. The tallest rises to 12 feet and is believed to be a prehistoric burial site. 
Address: Tiya, Ethiopia
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Sof Omar Cave

Extending 9.5 miles in length, Sof Omar Cave is the longest of all Ethiopian caves, featuring more than 42 entrances that lead to a fascinating underground world. The largest access way is the Web River and along the way you will spot cave-dwelling crustaceans, bats, plus bizarre geological features like the unnatural looking Chamber of Columns.
Address: Bale, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Semien Mountains National Park

The climb up the Siemen Mountains is very pleasant, as daytime temperatures permit for different outdoor pursuits. Experienced guides can take you to the best spots to see a vast range of indigenous flora and fauna, the Gelada Baboon, Semien Fox, and Walia Ibex (mountain goat).
Address: Debareq, Ethiopia
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Omo National Park

The place to go if you are looking for an authentic safari experience, Omo is the largest national park in the country, and features more than 300 species of birds and hundreds of wild elephants, giraffes, cheetahs, buffalos, and zebras. The Omo River, which flows through the park, is perfect for whitewater rafting.
Address: Omo Region, Ethiopia
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Bale National Park

This geographically diverse park features scenic mountainous regions and wide stretches of moorland along with untouched natural attractions enhanced by unique bird and animal species. The mountains are especially popular with hikers, as they offer spectacular views.
Address: Dinsho, Ethiopia
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Danakil/ Dallol Depression

Explore the steamy crater lakes of Erta Ale volcano and one of the deepest points on earth as you trek through the Danakil Desert. The colorful mineral deposits of Dallol and the lunar landscapes of the Danakil Depression are truly unique and memorable.
Address: Afar Region, Ethiopia
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