Ethiopia might not be the first place that springs to mind when planning an adventure away from home, however the country has a fascinating history and culture that’s waiting to be explored. The huge capital city, Addis Ababa is one such area that is seeing an increasing amount of curious tourists.
The city itself was named after “the new flower” as when its founders came to the region they discovered a new flower amongst the hot springs. Today Addis Ababa is comprised of approximately 250 sq. km of land and boasts a population of over 3 million people. The climate here is one to be envied with an almost permanent feel of spring in the air.
Whilst visiting the city, there is plenty to see and do, from historically rich museums and religious buildings to local markets and green open spaces. The National Museum in Addis Ababa is home to Lucy, the most famous skeleton in the world. Lucy is over there million years old and is believed to be the oldest hominid skeleton ever discovered. Another great place to visit is the Africa Hall which is now the head-quarters of a UN regional commission. Also, no trip to the city would be complete without first stopping by the Trinity Cathedral. It is a beautiful urban building that was built in 1941 to serve as the final resting place for the heroes of the nation.
The Merkato is another place that should be top of your to –do list. It is the hub of industry and trade in Ethiopia, it is even said that 60% of the money in Ethiopia is found inside the Merkato at any one time. As one of the largest open air markets in the world, the Merkato attracts roughly 50,000 people each day.
If you want an amazing experience, instead of a package holiday by the pool, this year then head to Ethiopia for a life altering experience. You will have ample opportunity to practice your Amharic language skills and converse with the locals whilst also sampling a whole new cuisine and culture!