Ethiopia is with many tourist attractions of historical sites cultural sites, wildlife land escapes religious festival and other many. This note briefs the most known attractions we have with in the country
YEHA AND ITS TEMPLE
Yeha is found in the northern region of the country called Tigray. This very old city has small settlement survives as a shanty town; it was once a site of great pre-Axumite civilization. Yeha is believed as the first Ethiopian capital. It is also the base for the establishment of Axumite kingdom.
Today the temple of Yeha, with one side ruins is still standing. it was built without mortars being used to build the temple of which the inside of the walls was believed to be have been paved with gold and other still undiscovered materials.
Different archeological excavations show that this temple was destroyed by fire. Treasures such as gold rings, golden lions, stone-engraved inscriptions written in Sabean, stone-carved animals like the Walya ibex (one of Ethiopia’s endemic mammals), pottery works and others were uncovered. Some of these findings are displayed in the 4th-century church museum found in the same compound as the temple while others are displayed at the National Museum in Addis Ababa. The twelve underground formations and four other very deep cave structures (which seem to lead to Yemen, Lalibela, Jerusalem and Axum), increase the area’s importance in terms of both archeological research history and tourism activity
AXUM (ANCIENT CITY WITH MYSTERIOUS MONOLITHS
This old city is found again in the northern region of the country it was the second capital city of Ethiopia. This old city is simply an open-air exhibition of Ethiopia’s pre- and post-Axumite civilization i.e. from the 1st C, BC to the 10th C, AD. This ideal site has been visited frequently for the last two millennia.
This Axumite kingdom was founded on the northern tip of Ethiopia at a place called Axum by the Sabean people who are believed native to the region. The creation of this kingdom was an indication of a power shift from the capital at Yeha to the fertile lands of Axum and its surrounding
By the case of its clothes to the Red Sea in the North-East and the Indian Ocean coastal trade routes to the South, trade prospered in the kingdom. Axum grew as a very important commercial center in its time. Trade with the Arabs, Indians, Turks, Greeks, Persians, Romans and others many old countries, Ethiopia was used as a center.
Axum had a high growth between the first and sixth centuries AD. With a good continuation of successful governance, Axum grew to the level of an empire. Language flourished so much that three languages came into existence as a communication medium. Greek was the language of the royal court, Sabean was used by the common people and Ge’ez, a later-developed language, with its roots in the Sabean scripts, became a church languages are result of this most of the old inscription arte in sabian.
Coin mintage, as a result of strong economic dominance, was another development at this time and helped the Axumites to develop trade. Gold, silver and bronze coins, which began to be minted around the 4th C., are still found exposed on the plains of Axum.
Axum is also the first city in sub-Sahara countries for the introduction of Christianity. In the early 4th C. AD was one of the greatest achievements of the Axumite rule. It was during the time of King Ezana in 330 AD that Christianity existed in Axum. Since it was the king who was the first to convert, Christianity easily reached the people under his rule. Since then, Ethiopia has remained a strong Christian state. The coins of King Ezana and his successors depict a cross, clearly indicating that the kings were Christian. The coins of kings before King Ezana in the pre-Christian era depict motifs such as moons, indicating paganism which they call it “God of almuca.”
The peak of Axum peak in terms of economic, political and social development in the fifth and sixth centuries. By then Christian Axumite kings were increasing their influence by expanding their territory across the Red Sea. The whole horn of Africa, including Yemen, was incorporated under the Axumite Empire. It was at this time that Axum became known as one of the four great empires of the age. Then in the 7th century Islam was brought to Axum by Muslim followers who came in exile to escape from severe executions in the Middle East for this the Moslem considered Ethiopia as one of the holiest country in the world.
LALIBELA (“THE EIGHTH WONDER OF THE WORLD”)
Lalibela which is one of the holy land of Ethiopia is situated in the north-east of Ethiopia; Lalibela is another renowned historical destination. Placed third in historic sequence, its site hosts the “eighth wonder of the world”, the Lalibela rock-hewn churches. UNESCO has recorded this site as one of the world wonders
The town of Lalibela has eleven rock-hewn churches and all, apart from their historic significance, the churches are known for their excellent and unique rock-carvings. The art displayed on the rocks dates from the twelfth century it is still with its good situation
It is part of the Lasta mountain chain; Lalibela was originally called Roha and was a site of the Zagwe dynasty, of the Agew people. The decline of the Axumite dynasty gave rise to the Zagwe dynasty and, as a result, power shifted southward from Axum. After an interruption of the Solomonic line for almost 12 years, King Lalibela III, from the last of the Zagwe dynasty, managed to have these rock-hewn churches constructed with traditional materials.
King Lalibela spend almost his reign on making these churches, more than 60,000 men participated to finish the work. According to local accounts, the work was assisted by angels. Other erected and cave churches built during this period are found around the town.
Gondar (The Site of Numerous Castles, Palaces and Churches)
Gondar was settled 17th-centurylocated on the northern west of the country it is one of the most important historical areas in Ethiopia.
This historical city was founded by King Fasiladas in 1632, the Gondarine period is considered to be the third major dynasty after the Axumite and Zagwe dynasties. The dynasty is historically important for the king’s mobile camp and the introduction of a permanent capital. The attempt by King Fasiladas to end the Zagwe dynasty was successful and set Gondar as Ethiopia’s capital from 1632 to 1868 or to the beginning of the princes era ”zmenemesafint”
The 17th century castles of Gonder reflect the strong dynasty and the power of progressive rulers. The biggest and most magnificent castle of all, King Fasiladas’ castle, which is still intact, was the first to be built. Seven of the dynasty’s kings had their own castles built to show their power and independent, efficient ruling styles. What is special about the castles is that they demonstrate the progress in Ethiopian building styles and follow on from the rock-building traditions of the Axumite and Zagwe kings besides to this the castles have an influence of Indian and Portugal architecture.
Gondar is also known for its religious center. Among the churches in town, DebreBerhan Selassie is famous for it’s typically Gondarine style and its ceiling it has a very impressive painting.
Gondar and the surrounding area. Today, it is one of the most attractive towns in Ethiopia and serves as tourist destination. It is famous for Blue Nile falls, the beautiful highland
BAHAR DAR (SEA SIDE)
Bahir which means lake side Dar is located 180km south of Gondar on the shores of Lake Tana in the north of Ethiopia.Bahir Dar (locally mean seaside) is a town on the southern shore of lake Tana close to the Nile Outlet. Its palm-lined avenues and pretty lake side vistas make Bahir Dar a decidedly attractive town, and it is also the base to the Blue Nile Falls and lake Tana’s ancient monasteries. With tourist amenities that are among the best in the country, Bahir Dar is an excellent place to settle into for a few days.
The island and peninsula of Lake Tana is collectively houses more than 20 monastic churches with its ancient antiquities and many of which are dated back to the 14th century. Many of the lake Tana’s monasteries have fascinating treasure houses including the Ethiopian orthodox churches parchments, manuscripts, and paintings, the Judaic sacrificial pillars (at Tana Kirkos) and the mummified remains of five emperors of Ethiopia (at Daga Estifanos), and the crowns of different Ethiopia’s emperors.
HARAR (THE WALLED TOWN)
Harar, the regional capital of the Hararghe region, is located in the very east of the country. Mentioned among the historic sites of Ethiopia, this relatively small but eventful town began in about 1520.
This 16th-century stronghold of Muslim sultanates is still predominantly inhabited by the Muslim tribes of the Adare, Oromo, Somali, and Argoba, who were ruled by successive Muslim Emirs. Harar town, recognized as the fourth Muslim sacred place (next to Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem) is now receiving pilgrims. It possesses a 16th-century wall built by the Adare to protect themselves from the aggression of the surrounding tribes. The hyena man’s live show of feeding the wild hyenas from mouth to mouth is Harar’s special claim to fame.
House styles and interior decorations are unique to Harar. The house of the 19th-century French poet, Arthur Rimbaud, is one of the most preserved in this town. Every house in Harar has almost the same inside partitions and all are colorfully decorated with traditional utensils. With its more than 40 mosques, Harar is home to the friendliest people in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia, the oldest independent nation in Africa, has a heritage dating back to the first century AD. Traders from Greece, Rome, Persia and Egypt knew of the riches of what is now Ethiopia, and by the first century AD, Axum was the capital of a great empire. This realm became one of the first Christian lands of Africa. Late in the 10th Century, Axum declined and a new Zagwe dynasty, centered in what is now Lalibela, ruled the land. Axum, Lalibela and Gonder now provide the greatest historiical legacy. It was in the 16th Century that the son of the great explorer Vasco Da Gama came to Ethiopia. He found a land of many kingdoms and provinces beset by feuds and war. In the 19th Century, under the leadership of the great Emperor Menelik, the country’s passage to modernization began. The following are some of Ethiopia’s historical attractions.
Some 76 kilometers from Axum is the monastery of DebreDamo (closed to women), which is said to have the oldest existing intact church in Ethiopia. Local tradition says that AbuneAregawi, one of the nine Saints, built the church in the sixth century. The monastery of DebreDamo can only be reached by rope pulley.
The treasured secrets within, kept intact throughout the country’s 1,400 tumultuous years of history because of that arduous, dangerous ascent, include an extensive collection of manuscripts, among them the oldest surviving fragments of texts anywhere in Ethiopia. The
Negash is a small village located 60 Kms East of Mekele, the Capital of Tigray region. It is the places were the first mosque was constructed in Ethiopia. It also serves as enduring reminder of the warm welcome extended by the Ethiopian king of the time when those Muslims including the family of the prophet Mohammed fled from persecution in their own land found refuge in Ethiopia during the early years of the Seventh century.
Since then, Negash has been a place of great historical and religous significance in a sense that it is a symbol of peaceful coexistence between Muslim and Christian religions.