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16 Days History tour itinerary for ethiopia: Explore The History Of Ethiopia's Major Cities

Addis Ababa, Aksum, Bahir Dar, Debarq, Debre Markos, Gondar, Hawzen, Kembolcha, Lalibela, Mekele, Simien Mountains National Park

Nature Tour
History Tour
Wildlife Tour
Explore the history of Ethiopia

Gondar fort


Venture out into the beautiful landscapes of Ethiopia and come face to face with its rich culture on this 16-day excursion from Addis Ababa. Experience the breathtaking scenery over the Simien Mountains, and discover the extraordinary diversity of local tribes and traditions.

DAY 01

Arival at Bole International Airport

  • Meet and greet by our representative/guide at exit of luggage claim and transfer to the hotel.

DAY 02

Drive to Bahir Dar

  • After breakfast, you will drive to Bahir Dar (564 Km from Addis). En route, you will visit Debre Libanos Monastery (founded in the 13th century by priest Tekle Haimanot, today one of Ethiopia’s most renowned saints) & the museum.

  • After 100 km from Debre Libanos Monastery the road, dropping more than 1000m gradually winds down to the bottom of the Blue Nile Gorge, which is comparable to America’s Grand Canyon cited to be the largest canyon in Africa.

  • You will stop for lunch at Debre Markos. Then you will arrive in Bahir Dar (late afternoon). You will check into a hotel.

  • You will have dinner, rest & spend the night there.

DAY 03

Visit Bahir Dar

  • You will have an early breakfast and drive to Lake Tana, take a boat ride where you will visit the medieval period island monasteries (beautiful mural paintings, religious books & sacred) on Lake Tana such as: Kibran Gabriel (only for men), Entos and on the Zegien peninsula visit Ura Kidan Mehiret, Azuwa Mariam, Mahal Giorgis.

  • After lunch, you will drive (some 30 km) and visit the Blue Nile Falls. (Visiting Blue Nile falls is not recommending now because the amount of water is very low.)

  • In the evening, you will have dinner and stay the night at the hotel.

DAY 04

Drive to Gondar and Visit the Fasiledes Castles

  • You will be driven to Gondar (185 Km) right after breakfast.

  • Then you will check into a hotel and after a brief break, you will have lunch.

  • Then, you will visit the Royal Castles & the Bath of Emperor Fasiledes (the bath is filled with water for the important Timkat ceremony once a year).

  • You will continue your visit to Debre Birhan Selassie Church (Trinity at the Mount of Light), the Castle of Empress Mintewab, and Kuskwam Complex which is a royal compound built by the Empress Mentewab.

  • Early in the evening, you will visit ‘Azmari Bet’ at Traditional Music Houses after which you will have dinner at the hotel and stay there for the night.

DAY 05

Drive to Debarq and Visit the Simien Mountains National Park.

  • You will have breakfast & drive to Debark (100 Km from Gonder) finish formalities at the Head Quarter of the park at Debarq and continue to drive another 20km then make a short walk/trek and spend the day visiting the Simien Mountains National Park (registered by UNESCO as a world heritage site, with endemic & mammals, birds, natural vegetation, & wonderful landscape).

  • Late in afternoon drive back to Debarq for an overnight stay or stay in Simien Lodge at Sankeber.

DAY 06

Visit Jinbar waterfalls and Sankaber

  • Spend the day in Simien Mountains National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

  • Enjoy guided hiking excursions around Sankaber campsite, the Jinbar waterfalls, and Chenek campsite with its scenic views and wildlife. The scenic Simien Mountains are a good break from the busy cities. Rising high above an eroded landscape of deep gorges and valleys, they rank as one of the continent’s most beautiful (and unusual) mountain ranges. A number of peaks reach well over 4,000m (13,123.4 ft), and Ras Dashen, the highest peak in Ethiopia, is one of Africa’s highest mountains.

  • Here, you can see some of Ethiopia's remarkable flora and fauna, including Gelada baboon, Walia ibex, and, if you're lucky, the Ethiopian wolf. The huge lammergeyer is also found soaring over the valleys here.

  • Return to our comfortable lodge for the evening.

DAY 07

Drive to Aksum

  • Right after breakfast, an early morning drive will take you to Axum (270 Km from Debark) through the Simien Mountains and magnificent topography and scenery, the Limalimo Gorge, Tekeze Valley.

  • You will arrive in Aksum late in the afternoon. You will check into a hotel and take a break.

  • Dinner will be at the hotel.

DAY 08

City Tour in Aksum

  • You will have breakfast and visit all day to the Stelae of Aksum, the Inscription of Ezana, Queen Sheba’s Palace, the famous St. Mary of Zion Church, ruins of ancient palaces (built until 4th century A.D.), with lunch break in between.

  • Then outside Aksum you can also visit the tombs of Kings Kaleb & Gebre Meskel dating to 6th century.

  • In the evening, you will get back to the hotel and spend the night there.

DAY 09

Drive to Hawzen via Adigrat

  • After breakfast, you will be driven to Hawzen (250 Km from Aksum).

  • On the way, you can visit Ethiopia’s earliest known capital city of Yeha which is considered as the birthplace of the country’s earliest civilization. It is single most remarkable antiquity is the well-preserved walls of the 12m-high stone temple of the moon that is thought to be over 2500 years old. And drive to Wukro Adigrat road.

  • Visit a selection of churches from a choice of several, including Arbuta Inessa in Adi Chewa, Medhane Alem Adi Kasho, Petros and Paulos and Mikael Melehayzenghi.

DAY 10

Visit the Rock-hewn Churches of Tigray and drive to Mekelle

  • After breakfast, you will visit some of the most beautiful medieval churches on impressive viewpoints such as Abuna Yemata Guh, Debre Maryam Korkor or Abreha-we-Atsbeha church, all situated near to the road between Mekele and Hawzen. It requires climbing a steep mountain to reach these churches so good walking/mountain shoes are recommendable.

  • You will have lunch stop at Hawzen lodge then drive to Mekele. You will arrive in Mekele late in the afternoon.

  • You will check into a hotel and take a break. Dinner will be at the hotel.

DAY 11

Drive to Lalibela

  • After breakfast, you will be driven to Lalibela (470 Km from Mekele) through the Ambalage Chain of Mountains.

  • Your arrival in Lalibela will be late in the afternoon.

  • You will check into a hotel, have dinner and spend the night there.

DAY 12

Visit the Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela

  • Early in the morning, after breakfast, your visit will be to the eleven rock-hewn monolithic (carved from a single rock) churches of Lalibela (UNESCO World heritage site, with magnificent architecture & paintings inside the churches).

  • In the evening you will get back to the hotel, rest, have dinner and relax.

DAY 13

One more day to explore the Lalibela Rock-hewn Churches /Optional/

  • Right after breakfast, an early morning drive will take you to historical churches around Lalibela like the Hill Church of Asheton Mariam (on the back of a mule or on foot), Yimerhane Kirsotos, Nakute Leib or Genete Maryam.

DAY 14

Drive to Kembolcha

  • An early morning drive after breakfast will take you to Kombolcha (335 Km).

  • En route visit Hayk Estifanos Monastery (45 Km before Kombolcha, famous for its variety of bird life near the town of Hayk).

  • Later, you will drive to Kombolcha & upon arrival; you will check into a hotel & stay the night there.

DAY 15

Drive to Addis Ababa

  • After breakfast, you will be driven back to Addis Ababa (375 Km).

  • You will see different landscapes of the southern wello.

DAY 16

City tour of Addis Ababa. Departure

  • On this day of the tour, you will visit the capital city of Addis Ababa.

  • We will visit the Institute of Ethiopian Studies Ethnological museum that houses a unique collection of artifacts from the 80+ tribes of Ethiopia. You will also have the opportunity to visit Trinity Cathedral and Mercato.

  • On our way, we will have the chance to see avenues, squares, obelisks and many places of interests and shopping.

  • Finally, you will be taken to a farewell dinner depending on your scheduled flight; you will be transferred out to Bole International Airport for the return flight back home.

  • 1250 USD Per Adult (* 15 person)
  • Transport (TOYOTA Coaster Bus 2012 Model, Air Conditioned and fully insured).

  • Airport transfer in and out.

  • Two letter water in the day time in each day.

  • Accommodation (14 nights best available in out side Addis Ababa).

  • Fuel.

  • 8% service charge and 15% government tax.

  • International and National Flight Ticket.

  • Video and Camera charges if and where applicable.

  • Local guides, Entrance fee and Scout payment.

  • Meals /Lunch and Dinner.

  • Alcoholic drinks and others.

  • Any souvenir purchase payment.

  • Visa Expense.

  • Travel insurance.

Addis Ababa, Aksum, Bahir Dar, Debarq, Debre Markos, Gondar, Hawzen, Kembolcha, Lalibela, Mekele, Simien Mountains National Park

Nature Tour
History Tour
Wildlife Tour

Contributed By

Haile Ayalew

starting from
USD 1250
Type of Tour

Private Tour


This tour is offered throughout the year.

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