HOLY GROUND: Lalibela in Ethiopia is known for beautiful church buildings
THE FOREIGN and Commonwealth Office, who publish information on the safety and temperament of countries all around the world, announced last week that Ethiopia is no longer on their list of places that people should avoid except in cases where:
“…essential travel to the Amhara and Oromia regions”, is necessary.
Germany and Belgium declared Ethiopia safe several weeks ago, however just three districts are still classified as being zones where only essential travel should take place. These are Tsegede, Mirab Armacho and Tach Amarcho in North Gonder.
Holiday-makers and families with Ethiopian connections will welcome the news, which opens-up travel options to the historic east African country at a special time of year for the region. Two major annual celebrations happen in January – Ethiopian Orthodox Christmas (or, ‘Genna’) on 7 January and Epiphany, or ‘Timkat’, on 19 January. Despite previous safety concerns, both events have consistently attracted a large influx of visitors who collectively contribute $30 million to the country each year.
Throughout the year, Ethiopia sees over 750,000 tourists enjoy the area which has good Internet connectivity, flights to and from 95 cities and the local traditional hospitality offered, which is frequently described as “welcoming”.
Another boost to the area comes from a recommendation from iconic travel authority, Lonely Planet, who selected Ethiopia as the only African country to appear in the Best in Travel 2017 guide.
Famous Ethiopians include religious figure Emperor Haile Selassie and supermodel Liya Kebede.
To learn more about travelling to Ethiopia, click here.