Ethiopia has truly risen from its troubled past and was crowned as the African country with one of the fastest growing economies in the world and is an inexhaustible source of wonders for travelers and sprawling country of ancient African civilization, colorful festivals, breath taking landscapes, diverse tribal culture, and amazingly friendly people. Dating back to the very beginnings of mankind, Ethiopia is old…old, beyond imagination. It is also the land of Queen of Sheba, a place of legendary rulers and fabulous kingdoms in ancient histories. Mother Nature was in a playful mood when she created Ethiopia, the result is a land that varies greatly from one region to the next. With more than 80 languages and some 200 dialects, each ethnic group preserves its own unique customs and traditions.
While coffee is the country’s largest export, accounting for 60% of all its export earnings, the Ethiopian Tourism Industry has also experienced a rapid incline in visitors ever since the launch of its five-year tourism marketing plan and strategy. With the Ethiopian Ministry of Culture and Tourism’s goal to triple the number of foreign visitors by 2020, the North-Eastern African country, as well as the oldest independent country on the continent, is well on its way to becoming one of Africa’s top destinations by 2020.
Africa’s New Hot Destination
And with good reason because within the Horn of Africa lies a world of wonders ready to be explored, waiting to be discovered, voted by Lonely Planet as one the top destinations in their Best in Travel 2017 Guide.
One of top travel trends which is on the rise and ever-growing is unique custom-designed tours; a way to engage on a more personal level and to experience a country through the eyes of a local.
Grand Holidays Ethiopia is a locally owned and operated tour company based in Addis Ababa with 14 years of experience. The company with their multi-lingual local and international travel specialists offers insightful and adventurous expeditions which can be enjoyed from first class vehicles. In Ethiopia – the birthplace of humanity – there is something for everyone; whether you want to dig around the historic past and cultural present, climb to mountain tops, be one with nature or document the journey through specialty photography tours.
It’s easier than ever to travel to Ethiopia with more flights from more destinations direct to the capital Addis Ababa with Ethiopian Airlines.
Reasons Why Ethiopia is Trending as Africa’s New Hot Destination.
Thirteen Months of Sunshine
That’s how Ethiopian Tourism’s motto rang before it got replaced with Land of Origins and even though the slogan changed, the sunshine is still as bright as ever. The Ethiopian calendar consists of 13 months every year and you can literally take a step back in time.
Vegetarian and Vegan travel destinations are highly sought after and Ethiopia is a haven for non-meat-eaters thanks to its Orthodox Christian traditions that forbids believers to consume animal products on certain days of the week.
Mecca for Photographers
Photography tours in Ethiopia are an emerging trend and there is no shortage of landscapes, nature scenes, wildlife and portraits to shoot in Ethiopia, you can brave the wilderness, make your way through the bustling city and go into Omo Valley to rub shoulders with tribesmen.
A Land of Endemic Wildlife
Ethiopia is a land of natural contrasts, from the tops of the rugged Simien Mountains (4620M), the third highest mountain in Africa, to the depths of the Danakil Depression, at 120 meters below sea level one of the lowest dry land points on earth. The wealth of natural beauty that blesses Ethiopia offers an astonishing variety of landscapes & wildlife.There is the Afro-Alpine highlands soaring to around 4,620 meters, moors and mountains, the splendor of the Great Rift Valley, white-water rivers, Savannah teeming with game, giant waterfalls, the dense and lush jungle… the list is endless.
With 14 major wildlife reserves, Ethiopia provides a microcosm of the entire sub-Saharan ecosystem. Birdlife here is abundant, and there are many endemic mammals from the rare Walia Ibex to the Ethiopian Wolf, from the Mountain Nyala to the Gelada Baboon and the shy Wild Ass, roam free just as nature intended. These offer amazing opportunities for nature & wildlife travel unparalleled in Africa.
A Land of Ancient History & African Civilization
With a history dating back some 3000 years, Ethiopia is a must for every culturally orientated traveler. The out of the world rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, the medieval castles of Gondar, the island monasteries of lake Tana, the ancient city of Axum dating back to 600 BC and so much more. In total, there are 9 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country.
Dallol – Danakil Depression & Erta Ale Lava Lake
In Ethiopia, you will find one of the hottest, lowest and geologically active areas on the planet and some of the most breath-taking landscapes on earth: the Danakil Depression. Erta Ale, one of the few permanent lava lakes on earth, active volcanoes, extraordinary landscapes with different colors of minerals, salt fields, sulphur fields, hot springs and more.
And last but not least – Ethiopia the Birthplace of Coffee
In the tenth century, Ethiopian nomadic mountain people may have been the first to recognize coffee’s stimulating effect.