Tour Code: FTE-AACT 03/2016
Tour Program Name: Addis Ababa City Tour
Attractions: History, Religion, Museums and Natural Scenery
Transportation: Surface drive
We start at 7:30 AM with a pick up from your hotel and drive north up to Mount Entoto. In 1881 Emperor Menelik II made his palace there, after remains of an old town Ankober were discovered, which Menelik II thought was a divine and auspicious sign. Start the day looking down on Addis Ababa from Entoto Mountain, the capital of Ethiopia before Addis Ababa. Here you will visit the Entoto Maryam church and museum.
Addis Ababa at between 2300 – 2500 meters is the third highest capital in the world and Entoto is a few hundred meters higher as we drive up the hill there is an appreciable drop in altitude and the air is filled with the scent of the Eucalyptus trees which line the road. From the top, there is a panoramic view of the capital and surrounding countryside. Entoto is an important watershed, to the north water flows to the Blue Nile, to the south to the Awash River. Your guide will point out the important landmarks of the city.
Entoto was soon abandoned as a site for the capital it was cold, difficult to provision and there was a shortage of wood. Empress Taytu was said to have led the move down to the plain of Finfine, and to have named the new capital Addis Ababa, or New Flower. However, two important structures remain within the old imperial compound, the churches of Mariam and the Archangel Raguel. It was in the church of Mariam that Menelik was crowned Emperor of Ethiopia in 1889, and in the small museum in the compound there are various clothes, court and household implements and weapons dating from the period. The church of Raguel is unusual in that it is octagonal, rather than round. There is a first story balustrade around which Menelik II liked to stroll.
Leaving the churches we descend to Addis Ababa, via Shiro Meda, the city’s largest market for traditional clothes. After the visit, proceed down to Addis Ababa stopping off at the National Archaeological Museum. Here visitors can see exhibits ranging from the 3.5 million year old bones of Lucy, through the Axumite and Gondarian periods to the monarchs Tewodros II and Menelik II.
We will take lunch break approximately 12:30 AM here for lunch there are a number of possibilities, we could take lunch in the Lucy Gazebo Restaurant, in the grounds of the National Museum, at Maleda Restaurant down from the National Museum, or visitors may prefer to sample Ethiopian food at the atmospheric Addis Ababa restaurant, once the home of Empress Zauditu.
After lunch we resume our tour with a visit to the Institute of Ethiopian Studies, where we can see clothing from different regions, along with artifacts, household utensils and in a separate section, paintings reflecting the history and culture of the country. This building was once the Genete Palace of Emperor Haile Selassie, and visitors can see his bedroom and bathroom. We will visit Menelik’s mausoleum, /Beata Lemariyam church/ where Etege Taitu and Queen Zauditu are also buried. On the way you will visit different monuments and squares.
After visiting St. George Church we then move to the Mercato (Depends on our time which we left), the largest open market area in Africa, where virtually every possible commodity is on sale, from livestock to computers. For the visitor good at bargaining, there is a huge selection of Ethiopian arts and crafts. We now return to your hotel.
END OF THE TOUR
Transportation fully insured air conditioned car with fuel
Meals in traditional restaurant Addis on full board basis
All entrance fees at sites
all costs of the driver and guide allowance
10% service charge
A traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony at a convenient time in the program
Any kind of alcoholic drinks
Video filming and photography fees
Incidental meals, snacks and drinks
Tips and items of personal nature like laundry, souvenirs, etc
All what is not included in the list above