whatdo

Ethiopia

Ethiopia, located in the Horn of Africa, is a country rich in history and cultural diversity, known as the cradle of humanity for its ancient human ancestor fossils. It is unique among African countries for maintaining its independence from colonial rule, except for a five-year occupation by Mussolini's Italy, and it has a long and proud history that includes the ancient Kingdom of Aksum and the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela.

Ethiopia's landscape is varied, featuring the Great Rift Valley, highlands, semi-desert areas, and it plays a vital role in the ecology of the region, notwithstanding challenges related to drought, famine, and political instability.

Places to visit

Day plans

Spend a day exploring around

day 1

Exploring Ancient Roots

morning:Start your day with a visit to the ancient rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, experiencing the spiritual atmosphere and remarkable architecture. Don't miss stopping by the local artisan markets for unique handicrafts. You can savor local flavors for breakfast at the Tej House Restaurant.

afternoon:Embark on a guided tour of the historical site of Axum, steeped in rich heritage and the intriguing obelisks. Spend time at the Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion and its legendary Ark of the Covenant. Enjoy a traditional injera meal at the Afraha Restaurant.

evening:Wrap up your day with an evening walk through the bustling streets of Addis Ababa, exploring the local cafes and trying out traditional tej, a honey wine, at the Kaldi's Coffee Lounge.

day 2

Scenic Splendor and Cultural Charm

morning:Start your day with a scenic drive to the Simien Mountains National Park, where you can trek through breathtaking landscapes and encounter unique wildlife. Don't forget to recharge with a hearty breakfast at the Limalimo Lodge.

afternoon:Take a trip to the lively city of Gondar and explore its captivating Royal Enclosure, featuring ancient castles and lush gardens. Dive into the vibrant local market scene and relish the diverse cuisine at the Four Sisters Restaurant.

evening:Unwind in the evening with a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony at the Balderas Condominium site, immersing yourself in the authentic local culture and a warm, welcoming atmosphere.

day 3

Cultural Immersion and Pleasure

morning:Indulge in a morning exploration of the National Museum of Ethiopia, delving into the fascinating history and artifacts, including the famous Lucy. You can relish a delicious Ethiopian breakfast at the Yod Abyssinia Cultural Restaurant.

afternoon:Discover the vibrant street life and local art scene of Addis Ababa at the lively marketplace in the city center. Enjoy a stroll through Unity Park and its lush landscapes, then savor a delectable lunch at the Habesha 2000 Restaurant.

evening:Experience the energetic nightlife of Addis Ababa by visiting the Fendika Cultural Center for a traditional music and dance performance, along with authentic Ethiopian dishes at the center's restaurant.

day 4

Historical Wonders and Natural Beauty

morning:Embark on a journey to the ancient city of Harar, famous for its ancient walls and vibrant markets. Explore the narrow alleyways and architectural wonders while soaking in the local culture. Stop by the Harar Cultural Center for a delightful breakfast experience.

afternoon:Venture to the lush Awash National Park and immerse yourself in its diverse flora and fauna. Enjoy a refreshing picnic amidst the stunning landscapes and don't miss a visit to the Awash Falls. Savor a delightful lunch at the Kudu Resort and Cafe.

evening:Spend a relaxing evening at the Sofi Café and Restaurant, sampling delicious Ethiopian cuisine and soaking in the tranquil ambiance before exploring the lively nighttime scene of Harar's old town.

Ethiopia Famous Food

Must-Try local dishes

Doro Wat

A spicy chicken stew with berbere spice and served with injera. It's a must-try dish and can be found in most Ethiopian restaurants.

Must-Try!

Kitfo

Finely minced raw beef, seasoned with spices and served with injera and traditional cheese. It's a delicacy that can be found in traditional Ethiopian eateries.

Vegetarian Platter

A selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes such as lentils, chickpeas, and assorted vegetables served on a large platter with injera. It's a great option for non-meat eaters and is widely available in restaurants across Ethiopia.

Food Markets & Street Food

A food market and street food guide

Mercato in Addis Ababa

One of the largest open-air markets in Africa, offering a wide variety of food stalls and street vendors selling traditional Ethiopian snacks, fruits, and spices. It's a great place to explore local street food and experience the bustling atmosphere of a traditional Ethiopian market.

Adey Abeba Market in Gondar

A vibrant market known for its street food options like sambusas (savory pastries filled with meat or lentils) and freshly squeezed fruit juices. It's a must-visit for those looking to sample authentic Ethiopian street food.

Dietary Restrictions

Navigating dietary restrictions locally

Vegetarian and Vegan Options

Ethiopian cuisine offers a wide array of vegetarian and vegan dishes, making it relatively easy for vegetarians and vegans to find suitable options. Look for restaurants that offer 'vegetarian platters' which include an assortment of meat-free dishes.

Vegetarian, Vegan

Gluten-Free Options

In Ethiopian cuisine, injera is a staple food, traditionally made from teff flour. However, some restaurants now offer gluten-free injera made from alternative grains like rice or buckwheat to accommodate gluten-sensitive individuals. It's advisable to inquire with the restaurant staff about gluten-free options.

Gluten-Free

Restaurants & Cafés

Best places to eat and drink in Ethiopia

Yod Abyssinia in Addis Ababa

A popular restaurant offering a traditional Ethiopian dining experience with live music and cultural dance performances. It's known for its authentic ambiance and flavorful dishes.

Four Sisters Restaurant in Gondar

A charming restaurant serving a variety of Ethiopian and international dishes in a cozy setting. It's a great place to sample local cuisine while enjoying a relaxed dining atmosphere.

Tomoca Coffee in Addis Ababa

A renowned coffee house known for serving some of the best Ethiopian coffee in a cozy and welcoming environment. It's a perfect spot to experience Ethiopia's coffee culture.

Things to do in Ethiopia

Unique local experiences...

Popular cities in Ethiopia

Explore local food, attractions and more!

Addis AbabaGodēĒrer SātāNazrētGonderMekeleĀwasaDire DawaBahir DarShashemenēDesēSodoĀrba Minch’JīmaHosa’inaHararJijigaDīlaNek’emtēDebre BirhanKombolchaDebre Mark’osFerferĀwarēDebre TaborĀdīgratGiyonĀselaK’ebrī DeharHāgere HiywetĀksumSemeraĀdwaGambēlaKwīhāĀlamat’āĀzezoButajīraWik’roWelk’īt’ēĀsosaGenetMaychewBedēsaKemisēMīzan TeferīBongaBedelēKoremSendafaNegēlēDebre ZeyitBabīlēWeldiyaShirēDenanYabēloWarderĀdīgalaTogoch’alēBodītīMotaFinote SelamDangilaGobaMetemaMojoYirga ‘AlemMersaMek’īBedēsaGīmbīĀrekaChagneDolo OdoMetuJinkaDegeh BurDembī DoloFichēShakīsoK’olītoWerotaĀgaroBurēĀdīs ZemenKoboDodolaGelemsoHimoraAsaitaSek’ot’aGīnīrMetahāraMī’ēsoĀdētInjibaraWelench’ītīDebark’BatīBichenaNejoGebre GurachaĀsasaAyshaĀbomsaNefas Mewch’aLalībelaCheraroHīrnaHurutaBek’ojīDēraĀbīy ĀdīFunyan BīraDejenDembechaGesubaKelafoDebre Werk’‘Alem T’ēnaKofelēShīnīlēDabatDolo BayFīnch’a’āĀwashChenchaWere ĪluKeleGorēĀdamī TuluShendēMēgaBīkēIntich’o