Proclaimed the World's Best Tourist Destination in 2015 by the European Council on Tourism and Trade, Ethiopia is nonetheless a largely undiscovered gem! Situated in the Horn of Africa and split by the Great Rift Valley, Ethiopia is a treasure trove of ancient and tribal cultures. Here you’ll discover the ancient royal capital of Axum, strewn with ancient remains and granite obelisks, ruined castles, rock-hewn churches and monasteries dating back to the early days of Christianity, as well as encountering some of Africa’s most fascinating tribes in the lowlands of the southwest. It’s an incredible and unique country – fiercely independent, Ethiopia has never been successfully colonised or conquered, and at one time boasted Africa’s most powerful empire. It’s also a country of astounding landscapes: dramatic mountains – including the baboon-infested Semien Mountains and Bale Mountains – the remote, harsh and remarkably unique Dallol Depression, desert-like wilderness, vast lakes, and the birthplace of the Blue Nile.
KEY FACTS BEFORE YOU GO:
- Capital: Addis Ababa
- Currency: Ethiopian birr
- Time Difference: 2 hours AHEAD of BST, and 3 hours AHEAD of GMT
- Flight time: 7 hours and 40 minutes direct to Addis Ababa
- Official language: Amharic
- Entry requirements: Visas are required for entry, either in advance by applying for an e-visa on the Ethiopian Immigration website, or on arrival. Visas on arrival are available for tourists at Addis Ababa (Bole) International airport, costing approximately US$50 for 1 month or US$75 for 3 months (it is recommended to bring cash in US dollar to pay for this). You will need a minimum of 6 months' validity from date of entry and at least 2 blank pages in your passport.
- Vaccinations and Health: You should always ensure that you travel with adequate travel health insurance. For up-to-date information, please check this website (as recommended by the Foreign Office): https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/76/ethiopia. If vaccinations are required, it is generally advisable to arrange an appointment with a health professional four to six weeks before departure.
General information on travel vaccinations can be found on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/travel-vaccinations/
To find out more, and for the most up-to-date advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/ethiopia
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