An Excursion to each Destinations/A day/ two days trip
Debre zeit is 47 kms. South east of Addis Ababa and less than one hour’s drive. The birds of crater lakes around Debrezeit are homes of varied aquatic bird and fish species. The nearest and most developed recreation center is Hora lake. Its most spectacular and scenic beauty can be observed from the terrace of Hora Ras Hotel while enjoying courtesy refreshment and at this time the city is home to many sophisticated resorts and lodges.
Sodere is a recreation area 126 kms, south of Addis Ababa. Sodeore is only 15 minutes drive after Nazerth town and swimming in the warm mineral water of the Olympic sized pole is very tempting before lunch.
The majestic Awash River passes near by the swimming pool and strolling Hippos and Crocodiles can be observed from time to time.
After lunch visiting the garden of the hotel is worthwhile. Late afternoon, drive back to Addis Ababa.
Menagesha indigenous forest is about 35 kms. West of Addis Ababa and the nearest National park. The road passes through some villages where local artisans make and sell pottery and ceramic objects. Gefersa, on the way is the reservoir from where Addis Ababa gets its water and where the Black – Headed Siskin and the Rougets’s Rail abound. After 25 kms. drive turn left to get to Menagesha forest covered with Juniper trees as old as 400 years. Picnic lunch by the guesthouse. Early afternoon, drive back to Addis via Sebeta town with an option stopover at the Meta Beer Brewery.
Ambo (also called Hagere – Hiwot) is 125 kms. West of Addis. The road passes through Gefersa, the Addis Ababa water supply reservoir, and fertile farmland.
Ambo is a weekend resort for swimmers and hikers. The main attractions of this area are, Wonchi Crater Lake, Guder River Falls and the Vineyard.
After lunch drive up to enjoy the view around the lake with rich vegetation and a wide variety of bird species. Late afternoon, drive back to Addis to arrive before dusk.
Melka Kunture/Addadi Miriam/ Tiya
Melka Kuntere is the nearest archeological site where fossils of per-historic age (nearly 2 million years old) have been discovered. Stone tools dating 1 – 5 million years back are other discoveries of this area.
Few kms. drive from this point, Addadi Mariam church can be reached. This church is believed to date back to the times of Lalibella and gives a good indication of the Lalibella Rock churches of the 12th century.
Tiya is among the most important of the roughly 160 archaeological sites discovered so far in the Soddo region, south of Addis Ababa. The site contains 36 monuments, including 32 carved stelae covered with symbols, most of which are difficult to decipher. They are the remains of an ancient Ethiopian culture whose age has not yet been precisely determined.
The stelae from the Soddo region, with their enigmatic configuration, are highly representative of an expression of the Ethiopian megalithic period.
Soddo lies to the south of Addis Ababa, beyond the Aouache river. It is remarkable because of the numerous archaeological sites of the megalithic period, comprising hundreds of sculptured stelae, that have been discovered there. The carved monoliths vary in size from 1 m to 5 m. Their forms fall into several distinct categories: figurative composition; anthropomorphic; hemispherical or conical; simple monoliths. In the northern area are to be found stelae with depictions of swords, associated with enigmatic symbols and schematic human figures.
Among the most important of the roughly 160 archaeological sites discovered so far in the Soddo region is Tiya, lying 38 km south of the river, which is also one of the most representative. Roughly aligned over an axis of 45 m there is a group of 33 stelae, with another group of three stelae a short distance from them. Of the 36 stelae at Tiya, 32 are sculpted with vaguely representational configurations (including the sword designs), which are for the most part difficult to decipher. One depicts the outline of a human figure in low relief.
They are the remains of an ancient Ethiopian culture the age of which has not yet been precisely determined. However, they have been interpreted as having a funerary significance, as there are tombs scattered around the stelae.
Debrelibanos & Blue Nile Gorge
The Blue Nile Gorge is one of the most spectacular gorges in the world, bigger than the Grand Canyon in USA. To reach the Blue Nile Gorge the road passes through Greenland plateau and after one hundred kms. drive to Debre Libanos Monastery which dates back to the 13th century. The endemic mammal Gelada Baboon and the Lammegeir as well as Rappels Vultures are all habitats of the area. The Portuguese bridge of the 16th century is also in the vicinity and worth a visit. Continue to drive through villages and farm lands till you reach the gorge, which is about one mile wide and one mile deep taking about no less than a 45 minutes drive to reach the riverbed. Picnic lunch on either side of the river. Early afternoon, drive back to Addis to arrive before dusk.
Debre Birhan/ Ankober
The road to Debre Birhan/ Ankober passes through green agricultural land on the eastern part of the capital city. After 130 kms. drive, Debre Birhan can be reached, from where, 43 kms. South -east of Ankober, capital city of Ethiopia in the fifteenth century and founded by Atse Zera Yacob. In this place important international affairs were accomplished by King Sahle Sellassie and Menelik II is the 18th and 19th centuries. Remains of the palace buildings are of great interest to visitors. Picnic lunch enroute. Late afternoon, drive back to Addis Ababa.