|Addis Ababa, Ethiopia||Addis Ababa, Ethiopia|
Standing on the eastern wall of the Great Rift Valley, Harar’s location gives wonderful views of the surrounding country, with the vast Danakil desert to the north, the fertile Harar Mountains to the west, and the cattle-rich Ogaden Plains to the south. Here we discover a uniquely different Ethiopia in this sacred Muslim city of mosques, minarets and markets. It is a centre of Muslim learning, a city which once struck its own local currency and a place that still has its own unique language; long regarded by the outside world as a city of mystery and romance.
Accommodation: Heritage Plaza Hotel or similar, Harar
We are met early this morning by our driver and driven to the walled city of Harar. Today is a long and bumpy drive - approximately 9 to 10 hours including stops, so we recommend you prepare by taking some snacks and plenty of water. Make sure you have your camera ready, as you will pass through many villages and some beautiful landscapes, unique and different to other areas of Ethiopia. Along the way we stop for a couple of hours in Awash National Park, one of the most beautiful natural reserves in Ethiopia. The Awash River runs through a spectacular gorge and the park itself is home to 392 species of birds and many mammals including oryx, gazelle and various other antelopes. The Awash River is the longest in Ethiopia; it does not run into the sea, but feeds into the Danakil Depression close to Asayta and terminates in a series of lakes. After visiting the park we continue on to Harar.
Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 dinner
Accommodation: Heritage Plaza Hotel or similar, Harar
Founded in the early 12th century, the great walls surrounding Harar were built in the 1600s to keep out powerful neighbouring hostile groups. Harar remained an important centre of Muslim learning and trade throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. Once an important centre of Islamic scholarship, the city was for many years closed to Christians and early explorers were forced to enter in disguise and at their own peril. We start our exploration with a guided tour of Harar to see the mosques and interesting old architecture of the town, including the old city wall and the house of the French poet Rimbaud. Harar is home to one of the stranger sights that you’re likely to see in your journey through Ethiopia. Every night, a local man goes to the outskirts of the city and calls the hyenas from the surrounding area. This practice apparently dates from the 1950s, but was based on an older tradition was first started to discourage the hyenas from stealing local livestock. As the hyenas approach, the hyena man holds out pieces of meat to them, either in his hands or sometimes between his teeth, which the hyenas then take from him. This is a practice that is handed down from generation to generation and only one person fills the role at any one time. This evening you may wish to go and witness this bizarre ritual.
Meals included: 1 breakfast
We enjoy a free morning to do our own exploration around the labyrinth of alleys that make up Harar. In the afternoon we are transferred to the airport where we catch our flight back to Addis Ababa. Our tour ends upon arrival in Addis Ababa. If you are flying out of Addis Ababa this evening, please check with us so we can ensure that you will have time make your connecting flight.
All airport transfers and transport, accommodation some meals.
Departure taxes, visas, insurance, other meals, drinks, optional additional tours or activities during free time, tips and items of a personal nature.
Vaccinations may be required for this trip. Please talk to your doctor about the up-to-date information for this region. We're travel experts, not doctors and defer to the medicos when it comes to inoculations.Visas and Permits
Please ensure that you have all required visas for your trip – this is your responsibility. Rules and regulations governing the issuance of visas are constantly changing, and vary for different nationalities and you should check visa requirements with your travel agent or relevant consular authority well before travel.
Australians, Americans, Canadians, British and New Zealanders currently require a visa for Ethiopia. For all other nationalities please reconfirm your visa requirements with your travel agent. Tourist Visas may be granted for visits of up to one month, three months, or six months. The period of the visa begins on the date of issue, so please ensure the visa is valid from the date of issue until the final date of departure from Ethiopia. If you have visited Ethiopia in the last six days prior to your date of return to Australia, Australian Customs officials will ask you to present a valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate on entry into Australia.
You are required to have travel insurance before heading off on a Peregrine trip. Insurance can be organised by your Peregrine representative or your travel agent.Responsible Travel
Our Responsible Travel ethos is at the heart of everything we do, from getting the basics right like respecting local cultures and the environment, to initiating projects that make positive contributions to communities, to our staff’s fundraising efforts and offsetting our carbon emissions.
Please visit our Responsible Travel (http://www.peregrineadventures.com/rt) page for more information.
Our Pre Departure Information or Travel Dossier (provided upon booking a trip) provides tips on how you can show respect for the local customs and culture in the country you are travelling in. Your leader will also help steer you though the complexities of local cultural norms.
Pre Departure Information
The information listed above is a brief description of some things you may need to consider when booking a trip. Once a tour is booked you will be provided with a link to your Travel Dossier which will contain detailed Pre Departure information.
Ethiopia & Eritrea - Lonely Planet
The History of Ethiopia - Harold G Marcus
The Ethiopians - Richard Pankhurst
The Sign and the Seal - Graham Hancock
The Life of My Choice - Sir Wilfred Thesiger
Ethiopia with a Mule - Dervla Murphy
Ethiopia with Love - Thelma Tolstoy
Sheba: through the desert in search of the legendary Queen - Nicholas Clapp
The Pale Abyssinian - Miles Bredin
When the Emperor Dies - Mason McCann Smith
The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please keep this in mind when you read it and check with us if you want to be sure about something. The document was correct at time of printing, but you can check online for the most up to date version. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!
3 November 2011