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 National Parks                                                         

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Awash National Park  Abiyata National Park  Bale National Park  Gambella National Park  Lakes             Rift Valley National Park 
National Parks  Simien National Park  Omo National Park                            Ethiopia travel facts  Ethiopia's Tourist Attractions  Travel Agencies  Tour Operators
 

Natural Parks        

 

Ethiopia is also a land of natural contrasts, from the tops of the rugged Simien mountains to the depths of the Danakil Depression, at 120 meters below sea level one of the lowest dry land points on earth. The cornucopia of natural beauty that blesses  Ethiopia offers an astonishing variety of landscapes: Afro-Alpine highlands  soaring to around 4,300 meters, deserts sprinkled with salt flats and yellow sulphur, lake lands with rare and beautiful birds, moors and mountains, the  splendor of the Great Rift Valley, white-water rivers, savannah teeming with game, giant waterfalls, dense and lush jungle  the list is endless.

Ethiopia's many national parks enable the visitor to enjoy the country's scenery and its wildlife,  conserved in natural habitats, and offer opportunities for travel adventure unparalleled in Africa.

For a cancun vacation, one needs not to get reservations on european airlines or flights to rome. They can get the essence of cancun hotels in a tropicana hotel as well.

Awash National Park   
     

Awash National Park  is the oldest and most developed wildlife reserve in Ethiopia. Featuring the 1,800-metre Fantalle Volcano, extensive mineral hot-springs and extraordinary  volcanic formations, this natural treasure is bordered to the south by the Awash  River and lies 225 kilometers east of the capital, Addis Ababa.

The wildlife consists mainly of East African plains animals, but there are now no giraffe or  buffalo. Oryx, bat-eared fox, caracal, aardvark, colobus and green monkeys, Anubis and Hamadryas baboons, klipspringer, leopard, bushbuck, hippopotamus,  Soemmering's gazelle, cheetah, lion, kudu and 450 species of bird all live  within the park's 720 square kilometers.

Click here for more information.

         

Bale Mountains National Park    
     
The Bale Mountains,  with their vast moorlands - the lower reaches covered with St. John's wort- and  their extensive heathland, virgin woodlands, pristine mountain streams and alpine climate remain an untouched and beautiful world. Rising to a height of  more than 4,000 meters, the range borders Ethiopia's southern highlands, whose  highest peak, Mount Tullu Deemtu, stands at 4,377 meters.

The establishment  of the 2,400-square-kilometre Bale Mountains National Park was crucial to the survival of the mountain nyala, Menelik's bushbuck and the Simien red fox. This  fox is one of the most colorful members of the dog family and more abundant here than anywhere else in Ethiopia. All three endemic animals thrive in this environment, the nyala in particular often being seen in large numbers. The Bale Mountains offer some fine high-altitude horse and foot trekking, and the streams of the park - which become important rivers further downstream - are well-stocked with rainbow and brown trout. Click here for more information.

 

Gambela National Park                       
     
The Baro River area, accessible by land or air through the western Ethiopian town of Gambela, remains a place of adventure and challenge. Traveling across the endless undulating plains of high Sudanese grass, visitors can enjoy a sense of achievement in just finding their way. This is Ethiopia's true tropical zone and here are found all the elements of the African safari, enhanced by a distinctly Ethiopian flavor.

Nile perch weighing  100 kilos can be caught in the waters of the Baro, snatched from the jaws of the  huge crocodiles that thrive along the riverbank. The white-eared kob also haunts the Baro, along with other riverbank residents that include the Nile lechwe, buffalo, giraffe, tiang, waterbuck, roan antelope, zebra, bushbuck, Abyssinian reedbuck, warthog, hartebeest, lion,  elephant and hippopotamus. Click here for more information.

 

Omo National Park                            
     
Far to the south-west lies Omo National Park, the largest in the country, with an area of 4,068 square kilometers. It is a vast expanse of true wilderness, adjacent to  the Omo River, which flows southwards into Lake Turkana and is one of the richest and

least-visited  wildlife sanctuaries in eastern Africa. Eland, oryx, Burchell's zebra, Lelwel hartebeest, buffalo, giraffe, elephant, waterbuck, kudu, lion, leopard and cheetah roam within the park's boundaries.

The Omo Valley is  virtually free of human habitation but is rich in palaeo-anthro-pological  remains. According to scientific research done in 1982 by the University of California at Berkeley, hominid remains from the Omo Valley probably date back more than four million years.

Much of Africa's volcanic activity is concentrated along the immense 5,000-kilometre crack in the earth's surface known as the Rift Valley. It is the result of two roughly parallel faults, between which, in distant geological time, the crust was weakened and the land subsided. The valley walls - daunting blue-grey ridges of  volcanic basalt and granite - rise sheer on either side to towering heights of 4,000 meters. The valley floor, 50 kilometers or more across, encompasses some of the world's last true wildernesses.

Ethiopia is often  referred to as the 'water tower' of eastern Africa because of the many rivers that pour off its high tableland, and a visit to this part of the Rift Valley, studded with lakes, volcanoes and savannah grassland, offers the visitor a true  safari experience.

The Omo River  tumbles its 350-kilometre way through a steep inaccessible valley before slowing its pace as it nears the lowlands and then meanders through flat, semi-desert bush, eventually running into Lake Turkana. Since 1973, the river has proved a major attraction for white-water rafters. The season for rafting is between September and October, when the river is still high from the June to September  rains but the weather is drier.

The river passes varied scenery, including an open gallery forest of tamarinds and figs, alive with colobus monkeys. Under the canopy along the riverbanks may be seen many colorful birds. Goliath herons, blue-breasted kingfishers, white-cheeked turacos, emerald-spotted wood doves and red-fronted bee-eaters are all rewarding sights, while monitor lizards may be glimpsed scuttling into the undergrowth. Beyond the forest, hippos graze on the savannah slopes against the mountain walls, and waterbuck, bushbuck and Abyssinian ground hornbills are sometimes to be seen.

Abundant wildlife, spirited rapids, innumerable side creeks and waterfalls, sheer inner canyons and  hot springs all combine to make the Omo one of the world's classic river  adventures.

East of the Omo  River and stretching south towards the Chew Bahir basin lies the Mago National Park, rich in wildlife and with few human inhabitants. The vegetation is mainly  savannah grassland and bush, extending across an area of 2,160 square kilometers. Mammal species total 81, including hartebeest, giraffe, roan  antelope, elephant, lion, leopard and perhaps even a rare black rhino.   Click here for more information.

 

Simien Mountains National Parks      
     
The Simien Mountain  massif is a broad plateau, cut off to the north and west by an enormous single crag over 60 kilometers long. To the south, the tableland slopes gently down to  2,200 meters, divided by gorges 1,000 meters deep which can take more than two  days to cross. Insufficient geological time has elapsed to smooth the contours of the crags and buttresses of hardened basalt.

Within this  spectacular splendor live the Walia (Abyssinian) ibex, Simien red fox and Gelada baboon - all endemic to Ethiopia - as well as the Hamadryas baboon,  klipspringer and bushbuck. Birds such as the lammergeyer, augur buzzard,  Verreaux's eagle, kestrel and falcon also soar above this mountain retreat.

Twenty kilometers  north-east of Gondar, the Simien Mountains National Park covers 179 square  kilometers of highland area at an average elevation of 3,300 meters. Ras Dashen,  at 4,620 meters the highest peak in Ethiopia, stands adjacent to the  park.

The Simien escarpments, which are often compared to the Grand Canyon in the United States  of America, have been adopted by Unesco as a World Heritage Site. Click here for more information.

                                                        

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Home | Abiyata Park | Awash National Park | Bale Mountains National Park | Gambela National Park | Lakes | Omo Park | Rift valley National Park | Simien Mountains Park

This site was last updated 05/01/13