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Ethiopia

Ethiopia Vacation Packages & Tours at -25%

Our recommendation to visit Ethiopia

Map of Monolithic Churches & Ancient Tribes
Monolithic Churches & Ancient Tribes
-25%

From $5,899

$4,399

Per night: $367

Ethiopia in 13 days +

Monolithic Churches & Ancient Tribes

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    Addis Ababa
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    Arba Minch
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    Bahir Dar
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    Gondar
+ 3 more
  • Accommodation
  • All flights
  • All transfers
  • Breakfast only
  • Activities
Couples
Culture
Solo Traveler
Emma, Travel Expert

Emma
Travel crafter

An incredible experience. A journey of discovery that takes you around Ethiopia, from unearthing medieval cave churches to meeting the people of age-old tribes.

Enamoring trips up to 50% off

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Extraordinary Ethiopia Tours & Vacation Packages

Our Ethiopia tours take you to an intriguing nation located in the Horn of Africa. It’s the second most populated and oldest independent country in Africa. Ethiopia’s breathtaking landscapes, historical monuments, and cultural sites offer travelers an unforgettable experience.

We cover your flights, accommodation, tours, and transfers with our all-inclusive vacation packages. Some also include meals. Choose a private or group excursion, and leave everything to our experienced local guides.

Read on to learn more about the thrills and excitement that await you in Ethiopia. Find the best times to visit and discover essential information to help you plan.

Trips to Ethiopia from Canada

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Our tours to Ethiopia from Canada are perfect for travelers looking for an adventure in an exotic land. Here are some of the trip highlights:

  • Addis Ababa
  • Arba Minch
  • Bahir Dar
  • Gondar
  • Jinka
  • Lalibela
  • Turmi

Explore iconic sites in “the Land of 13 Months of Sunshine.” Traverse the countryside to experience the rural life of ancient tribes. Our Ethiopia tours and travel packages offer something for everyone.

Top points of interest in Ethiopia


Below are some not-to-be-missed spots you can expect to visit on your Ethiopia vacation.

Addis Ababa


Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, is home to historical structures, like Medhane Alem Cathedral and Gennet Mariam. Explore the city’s sights at your leisure if you arrive early on our Ethiopia travel tours.

Check out the National Museum of Ethiopia, which houses the fossils of ancient humans. Explore the Holy Trinity Cathedral, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church’s highest-ranking cathedral. Shop for local textiles, clothing, fabrics, and linen at the Chiromeda Market.

Arba Minch


Our Ethiopia tours take you to Arba Minch. Travel up to the Gughe Mountains, where you’ll meet the Omotic-speaking Dorze tribe. 

Experience their ethnic village life, and be awed by their beehive-like houses. Some of their homes, made of bamboo, are two storeys high. 

Formerly warriors, today the Dorze produce fine cotton-weaving products and brightly colored apparel. Shop for unique souvenirs to remind you of your visit.

Bahir Dar


Almost all our trips to Ethiopia take you to Bahir Dar, Ethiopia’s third largest and most beautiful city. Discover the Amhara culture as you travel through rural villages, which still use traditional agricultural methods.

Explore Lake Tana and the islands around it, home to ancient monasteries, including the Ura Kidane Mihret and Kibran Gebriel. The churches house Ethiopian manuscripts, religious paintings and treasures.

Enjoy the picturesque sunset at Bezawit Hill as the day’s trip ends. Catch an exterior view of Emperor Haile Selassie I’s summer palace, which is off-limits to tourists.

Gondar


The best Ethiopia trips include Gondar, known as the “Camelot of Africa.” Famous for its castles, forts, and 17th-century churches, the ruins have a UNESCO World Heritage Site status.

Discover the Fasil Pool or Fasilides Bath and Gondar Castle. The bath is part of the yearly Ethiopian Orthodox Christian Timkat celebration, Visit the Debre Birhan Trinity Church, one of the country’s most beautiful churches.

Explore the ruins of medieval castles in the royal enclosure, Fasil Ghebbi. The fortress is surrounded by a wall spanning 900 meters (2,952 feet).

Ethiopia: Off the beaten track


Our adventure tours in Ethiopia give you some freedom to explore the country at your own pace. Apart from guided trips to popular tourist spots, we also take you off the beaten path to explore lesser known gems.

Visit the Konso tribe and view totems honoring the dead. Discover the complex agricultural terracing methods they practice. Their lands are classified as a World Heritage Site.

Take a trip to the Omo Valley in Turmi and meet the Hamar people in the bush-covered hills. These cattle herders have a unique ritual called “bull jumping.” It’s a ceremony men undergo to become adults.

Meet the Daasanach tribe at Omorate. These people were once nomadic herders. Today, they focus on fishing, agriculture, and livestock.

Book your trip to Ethiopia with Exoticca

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Our Ethiopia tours from Canada include a range of benefits to ensure our customers have a memorable experience.

Ethiopia all-inclusive vacation packages: Flights, hotels, tours & transfers


Reserve our all-inclusive trips to Ethiopia and enjoy peace of mind as we handle all your travel arrangements.

We book your flights, hotels, tours, and transfers on your vacation. Some of our packages also include meals. Focus on the exciting experience that awaits.

Ethiopia partially or fully guided tours


We tailor our Ethiopia trips to include fully and partially guided group tours. We partner with local guides to ensure you get the best experience. 

You may also choose to explore privately, at your own pace. Inform our travel agents, and they’ll make the arrangements. Discuss with our experts if you have special needs and we’ll see to them. Our goal is to make your vacation memorable.

Created by our own travel experts


We understand how challenging it is to choose which places to visit, so we’ve selected the best ones for you. Our local experts use their in-depth historical and cultural knowledge to design our Ethiopia tours, ensuring the premium sites are included.

With our extensive experience, expect nothing less than an extraordinary vacation. Immerse yourself in the way locals live while enjoying Ethiopia’s sights.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best month to visit Ethiopia?

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You can book an Ethiopia tour any time, as the country has pleasant conditions all year round. The only thing to keep in mind is the rainy season, as you may not get a clear view of wildlife during an excursion.

Is Ethiopia attractive for tourists?

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Ethiopia is an excellent option for tourists. It offers beautiful landscapes, intriguing wildlife, historical ruins, and cultural experiences. More adventurous travelers enjoy exploring the outdoors, trekking, hiking, camping, or viewing wildlife.

What is Ethiopia rich in?

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Ethiopia is rich in resources like gold, potash, copper, platinum, and natural gas. The African nation is also a producer and exporter of agricultural commodities, like coffee.

What is in Ethiopian food?

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Ethiopian cuisine contains a variety of spices and vegetables. Meals are typically gluten-free and vegan options are available. Meat, fish, eggs, or dairy may not be available during fasting days.

Exoticca Travel Stories

Creating unforgettable memories, one traveler at a time

Bahir Dar · Ethiopia

Ethiopia

A great value experience

I loved Ethiopia, although it is a challenging travel destination which will open your eyes and teach you a lot about different cultures. It was more of an experience than a holiday and I liked that we fit in so many sights into a short time.

Ethiopia Travel advice

Ethiopia tourist attractions

More information about Ethiopia

Thought to be the ‘cradle of human civilization’,  Ethiopia is a landlocked nation in the Horn of Africa. Famed for its ancient dynasties, traditional tribes and historic relics of the past, such as the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela,  Ethiopia vacations should be at the top of the list for all who want to uncover the origins and history of modern civilization.

As the most populous landlocked country in the world, Ethiopia shares borders with Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Kenya. The vibrant capital of Addis Ababa has gained a great reputation for its trendy music and gastronomic scene, and as being the home of ‘Lucy’, the remains of the earliest human ancestor ever discovered, who now resides in the National Museum. Historic cities such as Gondor and Axum tempt travelers to step back in time through the ages, with ancient obelisks and imposing castles in a variety of architectural styles.

On the other hand, the vast Omo Valley is the cultural center of Ethiopia, home to several different tribes and rural communities. A trip to Ethiopia and the Omo Valley brings you into direct contact with distinct and authentic tribes, allowing an insight into the traditions and lifestyles of the people who can trace their ancestors to these ancient lands. Untouched landscapes can be found between the vibrant cities and charming villages, whilst the imposing Simien Mountains provide a dramatic backdrop for adventures in the north of the country. 

 

History of Ethiopia

The wonders of the past are at the heart of any trip to Ethiopia, and relics of the nations rich heritage can be found through the country. Ethiopia is considered to be the region from which modern humans originated, and the oldest humanoid ancestor, ‘Lucy’, can be found in the capital, having been discovered in 1974 near the village of Hadar. A system of governance, resembling a monarchy, was established in Ethiopia as early as the 2nd millennium BC and remained as such for most of the country’s history.

Famously, Ethiopia retained its independence throughout the centuries, and unlike many other African nations, did not succumb to European colonization during the ‘Scamble for Africa’. Instead, Ethiopia’s history is characterized by great kingdoms and dynasties, such as the mighty Kingdom of Axum, considered, during the early centuries, to be one of the four great powers of the world! 

Today, if you visit the city of Axum during an Ethiopia tour package, you can explore the reign of this great empire and see relics such as the towering Obelisk of Axum, a 24-meter obelisk, believed to have been used as a burial marker. Other ancient relics, such as the 11 rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, also remain well preserved. These iconic churches were constructed in the 11th-century by King Lalibela of the Zagwe dynasty. 

The dynasty that most shaped modern-day Ethiopia was the Solomon dynasty, who ruled for over 700 years. Under this dynasty, Ethiopia made contact with European powers during the Middle Ages, and despite the help of Portuguese during the Abyssinian-Adal warEuropeans were eventually expelled from the country when the monarchy deemed they posed a threat to the stability of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church

Visitors on a holiday to Ethiopia might remember the days of Emperor Haile Selassie, who’s reign characterized much of the 20th-century. During this tumultuous period, Italian forces invaded and occupied Ethiopia between 1936 and 1941, forcing Haile Sellasie to address the League of Nations, appealing for help to stop the invasion of his nation. British forces reacted by pushing out Italian fascists and the Anglo-Ethiopian Agreement of 1944 sealed Ethiopia’s sovereignty. 

In the later 20th-century the 1974 military, Soviet-backed coup dethroned Emperor Selassie and established a one-party Soviet state. Violent political repression followed, in an era known as the ‘Red Terror’, when an estimated one-third of the population was killed. Democracy was not reinstated in Ethiopia until 1991, following the widespread and devastating famines of the 80s

 

Nature in Ethiopia

With landscapes ranging from the valleys and hilltops of the Simien Mountains to the molten Danakil Depression, one of the hottest places on earth, Ethiopia has plenty of unique and endemic wildlife to satisfy safari lovers. 31 endemic species, such as the rare Ethiopian Wolf can be sighted in the country, as well as a rich range of bird species, making an Ethiopian tour a great choice for avid bird-watchers. 

Even if your tour of Ethiopia is focused on the cultural sights, you’ll still be astounded by the natural beauty of the country outside of the vast urban sprawl of the capital. The Blue Nile Falls, known as the ‘great smoke’ is one of the most famous natural attractions, whose mighty 45 meter high waterfalls serve the important purpose of isolating Lake Tana from the rest of the River Nile, encouraging unique wildlife in Lake Tana itself. 

This huge lake is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve with distinct fish and bird species such as pelicans and softshell turtles. A different landscape altogether, the Bale Mountains, in the highlands of southeast Ethiopia, is home to picturesque alpine scenery and rich animal life, including the elusive Ethiopian wolf and unique plants and flora. 

 

Culture in Ethiopia

Ethiopian culture is highly diverse and one of the major reasons for the country’s popularity as a travel destination. More than 80 different ethnic groups make up the huge population of over 100 million, who speak around 90 different languages. The most widely spoken are Oromo, Amharic, and Somali. Religion has played a major role in the history of Ethiopia and is at the heart of national culture. 

There are largely Christian and Islamic communities, as well as many followers of traditional beliefs, making it a fascinating destination for discovering the local culture. The region, officially named as the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s region, is home to numerous tribes and communities such as the Hamar, Mursi, and Sumur people, who live very traditionally, each possessing their distinct cultural practices that have survived the threat of modernity. 

Many tours of the Omo Valley pay homage to these communities and include visits to different villages where travelers can get to know the ways of life of the numerous tribes. In the capital of Addis Ababa, where much of the population live, there is a great up-and-coming music scene, vibrant locals and plenty of trendy bars and restaurants for a slice of modern Ethiopian culture. It’s also the best place to sample the national cuisine, so a must-visit for foodies!

Visit Ethiopia to discover the land where you can trace the origins of mankind, meet distinct tribal communities and watch the sunrise over the mythical Simien Mountains. A trip to Ethiopia is sure to be an eye-opening and soul-stirring experience, no matter the path you choose. 

  • Entry requirements

    Passport with a minimum of six months validity.

  • Visa

    A visa is required to enter the country. E-visa or visa on arrival services are available. For more information visit: https://ethiopianembassy.org/visa-service/

  • Time zone

    UTC + 03:00.

  • Currency

    Ethiopian Birr

  • Language

    Amharic is the official language in Ethiopia, although many tribal languages are spoken in the country such as Oromo and Tigrigna.

  • Tourist Office website

  • Electricity

    220 V. Adapter required.

  • Health

    Please consult your doctor regarding the vaccination against yellow fever and malaria prophylaxis. Travellers over 60 years must consult their doctor as the Yellow Fever vaccine can have serious side effects.

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