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Information About Ethiopia Check In Ethiopia Tours and Travel


Ethiopia is a country situated in the Horn of Africa. It is the 2nd-most populous nation in Africa, bordered by Eritrea to the north, Djibouti to the northeast, Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, and Sudan to the west. Ethiopia is the oldest independent country in Africa, and the second-oldest official Christian nation in the world after Armenia.

With over 80 different peoples, the cultures of our communities are prominent in our lifestyle. With traditions going back to the days of Axum, and a strong religious setting, celebrations and festivals play an important part in our daily lives. Our greatest festival is Timket (Epiphany), where tourists are welcome to celebrate with us. But other festivals such as Enkutatash (the Ethiopian New Year, in September after the rains). Maskal, Gena (Christmas), Id and Easter are all glorious celebrations. In every region you will discover local festivals and ceremonies where you will be welcomed as an honored guest. Remember, when checking any dates, that Ethiopia still retains the Julian calendar, and we are unique in having thirteen months. Our traditional calendar remains almost eight years behind the Gregorian calendar of the West.

Addis Ababa - Capital of Ethiopia

Adama - Capital of Oromiya region and popular weekend destination; also known as Nazareth (Nazret)
Aksum (Axum) - home of ancient tombs fields, near Eritrea
Bahir Dar - Near the source of the Blue Nile
Dire-Dawa -The second largest city of Ethiopia
Gondar - Some of East Africa's only castles
Harar - Ancient walled city
Lalibela - Home to 11 rock-hewn churches
Mekele - a town in the Tigrayan Highlands.
Moyale - Border town for trucks going to Kenya

Health Requirements Prior to entry, visitors should be in possession of a valid health certificate for yellow fever. Vaccination against cholera is also required for any person who has visited or transited a cholera-infected area within six days prior to arrival in Ethiopia.


Customs Duty-free import are permitted for up to: 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars, 1/2 lb of tobacco, 1 liter of alcoholic beverages, two bottles of perfume. Visitors may export souvenirs with a value not exceeding Birr 500, although some articles (such as animal skins and antiques) require an export permit.

Air Transport Addis Ababa's Bole International Airport is a gateway to the rest of Ethiopia. The airport also serves many destinations in Africa, Middle East, Asia, Europe and North America. The country's national carrier Ethiopian Airlines has an extensive domestic network flying to 43 airfields and an additional 21 landing strips. There are many other airlines that also serve Ethiopia. Please Click here to get information about Airlines Offices in Addis Ababa.

Road Transport Roads: There are some 4,100 kilometers of asphalt roads with a further 19,000 kilometers of gravel and dry-weather roads. Railway: A 778 kilometers railway line links Addis Ababa with Djibouti, and carries both freight and passengers.

Time Ethiopia is in the GMT + 3 hours time zone. Ethiopia follows the Julian calendar, which consist of twelve months of 30 days each and a 13th month of 5 or 6 days.

Currency Bottom Top The local currency is the Ethiopian Birr made up of 100 cents. Visitors may import an unlimited amount of foreign currency, providing declaration of such currency is made to customs on arrival. Foreign currency may be changed only at authorized banks and hotels. The currency declaration form must be retained as this will be required by customs on departure. Visitors, however, will be able to change back any excess Ethiopian Birr to foreign currency at the airport before departure.

Climate There are two seasons: the dry season prevails from October through May; the wet season runs from June to September.

Topography Ethiopia is on an elevated central plateau varying in height between 2,000 and 3,000 meters. In the north and center of the country, there are 2 mountains whose peaks rise over 4,000 meters.

Economy About 90 percent of the population earns their living from the land, mainly as subsistence farmers. Agriculture is the backbone of the national economy and the principal exports from the sector are coffee, oil seeds, pulses, flowers, vegetables, sugar and foodstuffs for animals.

Language Ethiopia is a multiethnic state with a variety of languages spoken in the country, of which there are 83 with 200 dialects. The main three languages are Amharic, Tigrigna and Oromigna. English is also widely spoken.

Electric Supply Ethiopia uses 220 volts 50 cycles AC.

People The population is estimated at 65 million, over 50 per cent of whom are under 20 years old. The average number of inhabitants per square kilometer is 49.

Excursions Excursions within Ethiopia, whether for a day or for a month, may be organized by any of the travel agencies or tour operators.

Hotels Addis Ababa has hotels that cater to all budgets, from the luxurious Sheraton and Hilton hotels to the tourist class hotels. All tourist resorts offer a choice of modern hotels.

Taxis Taxis are available in cities and major towns. These include the blue-and-white mini buses, pickups with a closed Canopy or Saloon Cars. They normally operate on a fixed rate and standard route. Personalized and specific trips should be negotiated with the driver in advance. In the Capital, there are Luxury Mercedes Benz taxis operated by National Tour Operation (NTO). They are stationed outside major hotels and at the airport. They also do not have meters. In addition, there are yellow taxis stationed at the airport for special hire which necessitates a prior negotiation with the driver for the price.