This shorter tour through the Northern parts of Ethiopia gives you the best overview of all important historical sights. You will visit Lake Tana and the Blue Nile Falls around Bahir Dar, the castle of King Fasil in Gondar and of course the rock hewn churches of Lalibela.
Day 1 – Addis Ababa
Arrival in Addis Ababa. Depending on your flight you will have time for a city tour through Addis Ababa. Spend the night in Addis Ababa.
Day 2 – From Addis Ababa to Bahir Dar
Leave the capital Addis Ababa and drive north towards Bahir Dar. On the way you will pass the Nile River and gorge and stop at the Millennium Bridge that is crossing the gorge. From here you have a wonderful view through the wide gorge. Lunch and coffee will be taken in Debre Markos or any other town on the road. You will reach Bahir Dar in the late afternoon. Spend the night in Bahir Dar.
Day 3 – Bahir Dar and around
After breakfast, head out by boat to the various islands on Lake Tana to visit different Ethiopian Orthodox Churches and Monasteries with its beautiful wall paintings. You will be back in Bahir Dar for lunch. After a good meal, the car will take you to the close by Blue Nile Falls. The Nile actually origins in Laka Tana to flow first south and then to the West towards Sudan. The Blue Nile Falls are the biggest water falls in Ethiopia and also the short hike to the viewpoint is great. Don’t be shy and get close to the water in order to enjoy the spindrift of the strong water falling down, it will cool you down on a hot day. Take as much time as you need at the falls and enjoy a cup of coffee. Spend the night in Bahir Dar.
Day 4 – Bahir Dar to Gondar
Enjoy the landscape during the easy drive from Bahir Dar to Gondar. A relaxed start after breakfast is sufficient for this 3 hrs ride. In Gondar you will visit King Fasil’s Castle and Bath which was built in the 17th century. You will easily understand why Gondar has been called the Camelot of Ethiopia. Also a visit to Selassie Church is absolutely recommended. No other church has such beautiful and well preserved wall paintings that tell you a lot about Ethiopian Christianity. Spend the night in Gondar.
Day 5 – Gondar to Lalibela
Drive from Gondar to Lalibela which will take almost the full day. Nevertheless, the road will take you through very nice landscapes, passing valleys and mountains. You can stop on the road any time to visit a local village and have lunch. Spend the night in Lalibela which you will reach in the late afternoon. But before retiring to bed, you should visit the local Azmari House where you can enjoy traditional honey wine, music and dance.
Day 6 – Lalibela
Lalibela is famous for its eleven rock hewn churches that were built by King Lalibela in the 11th century. This town is very small and all of these churches can be reached on foot very easily. A local guide will take care of you to show you the many hidden treasures that can be found while walking through these amazing monolithic churches that are also part of the World Heritage List. Another restaurant should not be missed in Lalibela, the Ben Abeba restaurant which is located at the edge of the mountains providing the guests to look over a beautiful mountain range while enjoying the finest food that Lalibela has to offer. Spend the night in Lalibela.
Day 7 – Lalibela and Addis Ababa
You will have some time in the morning to walk around the town of Lalibela before you catch a flight with Ethiopian Airlines back to the capital Addis Ababa. After a short tour though the city, you will check into a hotel in Addis Ababa or get ready for your flight back home. A farewell dinner will take place in a cultural restaurant where you can enjoy great Ethiopian cuisine and traditional dances and music from all over the country. The tour ends here.