Festival Tour – Meskel

Duration: 10 Days

Transportation: Drive & flight

Itinerary Code: WETT0045

Type of Tour: Festival (the finding of thr true cross) tour

Day 1: Sep 25, Arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Air port
Wow Ethiopia Tours representative will meet and take you to your hotel. Morning will be free. Afternoon, start your sightseeing tour of Addis Ababa, starting your tour from the Trinity Cathedral, visit to the National Museum (archaeological and historical), which has the best collection of Ethiopian antiquities and archeological discoveries, including the famous oldest hominid "Lucy"; then drive up to Mt. Entoto, the highest part of the capital, where you will have a panoramic view over the town of Addis Ababa; a drive down to the biggest open air market in East Africa called Mercato. Overnight Hotel.

Day 2: Sep 26, Meskel Festival
Morning mausoleum of Menlilik the II at the church of Beata Mariam, then drive to Ethnographic museum in the courtyard of Addis Ababa university, then drive back your hotel, afternoon walk to the Meskel Square where you will bump into huge street festival of the Ethiopian Orthodox church, Meskel festival commemorates the finding of the very cross on which Jesus Christ of Nazareth was crucified in Golgotha in the fourth century by Empress Helena, the mother of Constantine. The celebration of Meskel recognizes the presence of the true cross at the Mountain of Gishen Miriam monastery in Ethiopia, and also recognizes Empress Helena's road to finding it. After a mass song and prayer there will be a big bon fire for the commemoration of the Meskel festival. Overnight Hotel.

Day 3: Sep 27, Fly to Bahir Dar Visit Lake Tana Island Monasteries & Blue Nile Falls
Early morning, a short flight will take you to Bahir dar. Upon arrival, you will be met by our tour guides, drive to a hotel where you will check and rest for few minutes. Your first visit will be to Lake Tana on a boat ride where you will visit to the medieval period island monasteries(beautiful mural paintings, religious books & sacred) on Lake Tana such as: Kibran Gabriel (only for men), Entos and on the Zegie peninsula visit Ura Kidan Mehiret, Azuwa Mariam, Mahal Giorgis. After lunch, you will drive (some 30 Km) and visit to the Blue Nile Falls. In the evening, you will have dinner and stay the night at the hotel. Overnight Hotel.

Day 4: Sep 28, Drive to Gondar and Visit the Fassiladas Castles
You will be driven to Gondar (185 Km) right after breakfast. Then you will check into a hotel and after a brief break, you will have lunch. Then, you will visit to the Royal Castles & the Bath of Emperor Fasiledes (the bath is filled with water for the important Timkat (epiphany) ceremony once a year. You will continue your visit to Debre Birhan Selassie Church (Trinity at the Mount of Light), the Castle of Empress Mintewab, and Kuskwam Complex which is a royal compound built by the Empress Mentewab. Early in the evening, you will visit 'Azmari Bet' at Traditional Music Houses. Overnight Hotel.

Day 5: Sep 29, Drive to Debark
Make a day Excursion to Semin Mountain, Drive to Debark in the morning, 100Kms from Gonder, the Headquarter of the Semien Mountains National Park. Proceed to Sankaber, 37Kms farther, which is your first trekking starting spot, 3250 ms above sea level. Spend the day trekking around the camp sites. Lunch will be served by lunch boxes on top of the view point; here you will see some endemic Ethiopian Birds like wattle Ibis, and some mammals like the Gelada Baboon. Around 15:00hrs, you will drive back to Gonder. Overnight Hotel.

Day 6: Sep 30, Fly to Lalibela
After breakfast, another short flight will take you to Lalibela. Upon arrival, you will be met by our tour guides, drive to a hotel where you will check and rest for few minutes. Your first visit will be to the eleven Rock-hewn Monolithic (carved from a single rock) Churches of Lalibela (UNESCO World heritage site, with magnificent architecture & paintings inside the churches). In the evening you will get back to the hotel, rest, have dinner and relax. Overnight Hotel.

Day 7: Oct 1 Early in the morning make a mule excursion to Asheten Mariam
Right after breakfast, an early morning drive will take you to historical churches around Lalibela like the Hill Church of Asheton Mariam (on the back of a mule or on foot), Yimerhane Kirsotos, Nakute Leab or Genete Maryam. Overnight Hotel.

Day 8: Oct 2 Fly to Axum & City Tour in Axum
Early morning, a short flight will take you to Axum where you will check into a hotel. After a short break, you will visit to the Steale of Axum, the Inscription of Ezana, Queen Sheba's Palace, the Famous St. Mary of Zion Church, Ruins of Ancient Palaces (built until 4th Century A.D.), all day with lunch break in between. In the evening, you will get back to the hotel and spend the night there. Overnight Hotel.

Day 9: Oct 3, Fly back to Addis Ababa
After a relaxed breakfast, a short flight will bring you back to Addis Ababa. You will arrive in Addis Ababa midday/early afternoon where you will do some shopping for souvenirs. Finally you will be taken to a farewell dinner depending on your scheduled flight; you will be transferred out to Bole International Airport for return flight back home. In the evening meet in the lobby and then drive to the traditional restaurant, where you will enjoy traditional Ethiopian music performances at your fare well dinner. Overnight Hotel.

Day 10: Departure
Oct 4, Transfer out to airport to fly back to Home.

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