Ethiopian Explorer - Trekking the Simien Mountains
Ethiopia, Trek & Walk, 13 days - from £1,595 (land only) - from €2,235 (land only) - from $2,580 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at the group hotel in Addis Ababa (2200m). A single timed group transfer is provided. KE Land Only services begin with lunch. Afternoon city tour. Hotel.
Day 2: Return to the airport for the internal flight to Gondar (2300m), formerly the capital of Ethiopia. After the short transfer to our hotel, we have the afternoon to explore the well-preserved medieval castles and churches of Gondar. Including the famous ceiling of Ethiopian Cherubs found within the Debre Berhan Selassie Church.
Day 3: Departing Gondar we drive to the trekkers market town of Debark (2700m), where we register before entering the Simien Mountain National Park. Drive to Senkaber. Camp.
Day 4: On our first full day of trekking we hike via Michwahtis Valley to Geech. En route we make a short diversion to see impressive sight of the Jinbar River plummeting into the Geech Abyss. From here we should also have excellent sightings of Egyptian Vultures and possibly our first encounter with Gelada baboons Camp (3600m). Approx 7-8 hrs walking, 900m ascent & 550m descent.
Day 5: Leave our camp set up at Geech and make a day hike to one of the finest viewpoints in the area, the promontory and small peak known as Imetgogo (3925m). After our the straightforward scramble to the summit, we hope to spot lammergeier vultures going about their business before returning to our camp at Geech. Approx 8 hrs walking, 500m ascent & descent.
Day 6: Following the edge of the escarpment we have fabulous views across the Simien National Park before making a descent into a giant lobelias valley - some of which stand 3 to 4 metres high. Hiking onwards our trek today is via the high point at Inatye (4070m) as we make our way to Chenek camp. Approx 6-7 hrs walking, 750m ascent & 700m descent.
Day 7: Well acclimatised and in good shape we trek up towards Amba Bhawit (4477m) and descend to the Meshawa Valley. Crossing the Meshawa River we have a steep but rewarding climb up to village of Ambiquo (3200m). Camp. Approx 8 hrs walking, 1100m ascent & 1600m descent.
Day 8: This morning is an early dawn start for those that choose to climb to the summit of Ras Deshen (4620m). Our steady pace treks through giant lobelia forests, grazing cattle and small settlements as we head for the cairend summit by way of a short scramble. With time for rest and panoramic photos, we descent to our Ambiquo camp. Approx walking 10-11 hrs, 1600m ascent & descent.
Day 9: Today we head back to the camp at Chenek, retracing our steps through the village of Chiro Leba and over the ridge of Amba Bhawit. Our final camp is at 4000m and we enjoy our last evening, spotting gelada baboons and possibly walia ibex. Approx walking 8 hrs, 1600m ascent & 1000 descent.
Day 10: Bidding farewell to our trekking crew, we drive approximately 4 hours to Gondar. With the afternoon to freshen up, rest or explore this historical town we reconvene in the evening for dinner.
Day 11: Today we catch a flight to Lalibela where we will have a sightseeing tour of the famous rock temples known as the 'Eighth Wonder of the World'. These include the 12th century Bete Giyorgis, carved to a depth of 25m.
Day 12: With a second day in this ancient city known as 'New Jerusalem', there is ample time to discover the eleven medieval UNESCO listed cave churches of Lalibela. A town of living history, Lalibela soulful atmosphere is a superb way to our last full day of exploration in Ethiopia.
Day 13: Fly to Addis Ababa. Free day. Day-rooms and hotel facilities are available. KE Land Only services end with the evening meal. A single timed airport transfer is provided.
GPS Trip Data
Click on the link below to view the detailed stats for this holiday via Garmin Connect. Tracked using a Garmin etrex20 you can see detailed mapping of the route, daily distances travelled, the total ascent and descent each day and maximum altitude.