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12 Days History tour itinerary for ethiopia: Exploring The History Of The Northern Routes

Addis Ababa, Adua, Aksum, Bahir Dar, Gheralta, Gondar, Kembolcha, Lalibela, Simien Mountains National Park

Architecture Tour
History Tour
Sightseeing Tour
Northern Routes
Exploring the History of the Northern Routes

900-year old Ethiopian church.


Set out to experience the historical sites of Ethiopia. Explore the ancient civilizations including the final resting place of the Ark of the Covenant, involve in natural activities like hiking to the highest Mountain in Ethiopia and experience the lifestyle of the locals.

DAY 01

Drive to Bahirdar

  • After breakfast, we go north to Bahir Dar via Debre Markos.

  • On the way, we visit the Debre Libanos Monastery and the Portuguese Bridge, the first bridge in Ethiopia.

  • After lunch in Debre Markos, we pass through the scenic Blue Nile Gorge.

  • Overnight stay in Bahir Dar.

DAY 02

Excursion of the Lake Tana Monasteries and blue nile falls

  • In the morning, have a boat trip on Lake Tana to explore some of the monasteries hidden on its shores and islands.

  • In the afternoon, leave town to reach Blue Nile Falls for an easy hike in the area.

  • End the day with a sunset view over Lake Tana from the top of Bezawit Hill, next to the former palace of Haile Selassie.

  • Overnight stay in Bahir Dar.

DAY 03

Drive from Bahirdar to Gondar

  • After breakfast, proceed driving north towards Gondar.

  • The drive will take you through rural villages, offering wonderful insight into the Amhara culture and the traditional agricultural methods still in use today.

  • After arrival in Gondar and check-in to a hotel, the afternoon will be spent exploring the sites of Gondar, including a visit to the Royal Enclosure, with six castles and several other buildings. Additionally, visit Fasilidas’s Pool, still used for Timket celebrations and the Debre Birhan Selassie church, with the most famous ceiling in Ethiopia.

  • Overnight stay at the hotel in Gondar.

DAY 04

Hiking through the Semien Mountains national park

  • Early in the morning, leave for the stunning Simien Mountains National Park. The jagged mountains and deep valleys offer a spectacular view. It is home to many of the endemic animal species of Ethiopia, including the gelada baboon (guaranteed to be seen) as well as the rare Walia ibex and Ethiopian wolf.

  • The afternoon will be available for hikes in the area surrounding the lodge.

  • Overnight stay in a hotel in Simien.

DAY 05

Simien mountains-Axum

  • After breakfast, leave for Axum, enjoying the final views of the Simien Mountains.

  • After stopping for lunch in Adarky, proceed driving through the Tekeze Valley to Axum, home of the ancient Axumite Empire, the Queen of Sheba, and the Ark of the Covenant.

  • Overnight stay in Axum.

DAY 06


  • Today, the whole day will be spent visiting the sites in Axum. Sites to visit include the famous obelisks, the Queen of Sheba’s Bath (which supplies water to Axum all year long), King Bazen’s tomb, and the Queen of Sheba’s Palace. 

  • Also visit the St. Mary of Zion church, where the Ark of the Covenant is kept, according to local Ethiopian tradition. Only men are allowed to enter the old church. Unfortunately, no one (except one specially chosen guardian monk) is allowed to enter the chapel where the Ark is kept.

  • Overnight stay in Axum.

DAY 07

Yeha-Debre Damo

  • After breakfast, drive to visit the ruins of Yeha, dating from the 8th to 5th centuries BC, thought to be the capital of Ethiopian civilization before Axum.

  • Visit the Debre Damo monastery, where the men climb up a 15-m rope to enter the monastery situated uphill.

  • Return to Axum for the night.

DAY 08


  • Fly from Axum to Lalibela, the most famous of all of the Ethiopian historical sites.

  • After lunch, begin to explore the 11 rock-hewn churches of the remarkable king Lalibela, visiting the Northwestern Cluster of churches, including- Bet Medhane Alem, Bet Maryam, Bet Meskel, Bet Danaghel, Bet Mikael & Bet Golgotha.

  • Overnight stay in a hotel in Lalibela.

DAY 09


  • In the morning, visit the Southeastern Cluster of churches, including – Bet Gabriel-Rufael, Bet Merkorios, Bet Amanual, and Bet Abba Libanos.

  • Finally, visit the most famous of all the churches – Bet Giyorgis, a huge monolith in the shape of a cross, and constructed in honour of St. George, the patron saint of Ethiopia.

  • After lunch, take an afternoon trip to visit the church of Yimrehanne Kristos, the most popular of the churches outside of Lalibela. This church was built in the late-Axumite style, with layers of wood and granite, set in the entrance to a large cavern.

  • Overnight at the hotel.

DAY 10

Lalibela- Kembolcha

  • Leave from Lalibela to Kembolcha via Woldia, stopping for a visit in the town of Hayk Estefanos, to visit the lake and the local monastery.

  • Overnight stay in Kembolcha.

DAY 11

Kembolcha-Addis Ababa

  • Drive back to Addis via Debre Birhan.

  • On the way, you pass the Mezezo Escarpment, with a good chance to see the endemic gelada baboons. Also, if this day is a Monday, there will be a short detour in the morning to stop in Bati for one of the largest markets in the country, including the interesting camel market.

DAY 12

City tour of Addis Ababa

  • City tour of Addis Ababa includes the panoramic view of Entoto Mountain, Merkato, which is said to be Africa’s largest market of its kind, and the National Museum (home of Lucy, hominid skeleton dating back 3.2 million years) and the ethnographic museums.

  • In the evening, traditional Ethiopian dinner with live cultural music and dance show and a farewell party.

  • After farewell dinner, transfer to Bole international airport for international departure.

End of Tour.

  • 1758 USD Per Adult (* Christmas is good time to travel to Lalibela and all North Ethiopia. )
  • New car with air conditioner.

  • Accommodation (Middle range Hotel).

  • Entrance fees .

  • Guide service throughout the tour.

  • Local guides and scouts .

  • All legal requirements fees.

  • Bottled water for all tour days.

  • Taking you to the local villages. 

  • Upon request, the above tour program can be modified, rearranged, combined with other itineraries, shortened or extended to suit your interest, time, and budget. Please contact for further details.

  • I arrange trips to all over the country and Lalibela is just one them. 

Addis Ababa, Adua, Aksum, Bahir Dar, Gheralta, Gondar, Kembolcha, Lalibela, Simien Mountains National Park

Architecture Tour
History Tour
Sightseeing Tour

Contributed By

Escapewith Sisay

starting from
USD 1758
Type of Tour

Private Tour


This tour is offered throughout the year.

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