9-Days Group Tour: Danakil Depression, Lalibela & Simien Mountains Trekking

Facilides' Castle
The Fasil Ghebbi, masoned building built by Emperor Fasilides who founded Gondar in 1636.

Are you looking for an unforgettable trekking adventure in Ethiopia? Look no further than the Simien Mountains! These towering peaks are home to some of the most spectacular scenery in Africa, and our trekking tours offer you the chance to experience it all.

We offer a variety of trekking tours Simien Mountains, so you can choose the one that’s right for you. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced hiker, we have a tour that’s perfect for you.

Our tours are led by experienced guides who will take you to the most amazing places in the mountains. You’ll see towering cliffs, deep gorges, and abundant wildlife, including the iconic Gelada baboon.

In addition to the stunning scenery, Simien Mountains is also home to a rich history and culture. You’ll have the opportunity to visit ancient rock churches, learn about the local people, and experience their traditional way of life.

So what are you waiting for? Book your trekking tour to Simien Mountains today! You won’t regret it.

Day 01: Mekelle – Danakil depression (Erta Ale)

Early morning of day one we set off on 4WD to the abandon Danakil Depression departing from Mekelle – Erta Ale volcano. The 247 km drive takes 5 hours on drive passing through different landscapes of solidified lava rocks and sand dune. Passing several small hamlets scattered here and there in this deserted land, you will arrive at Erta Ale camping site. Then, at dusk we will start hiking to the top of the volcano. We spend few hours watching the flowing-lava gifs or actions of the boiling lava.

Danakil Depression and Erta – Ale

Erta Ale contains one of the world’s active lava lake with 613 meters above sea level. Besides, it is notable for being the longest existing lava lake present since the early years of the Twentieth century. Finally, descend back to basic camp to have a dinner and spend the night under stars or in shack. Overnight camping.

Day 02:   Erta Ale – Hamad Ela

Early morning of the day, we hike back to the top of the crater to visit the volcanic activities for the second time during sun rise. After that, descend once again from the top of the crater starting 7:00 am down to camp site for breakfast. Subsequently, after breakfast start driving to Hamad Ela for about 5 hours and have your picnic lunch on the way under shed of palm tree. Then after, start visiting Hamad Ela village to see the life style of the local Afar people. Finally, proceed to Salt Lake Asale a huge salty lake where you will swim in a natural pool Salt Lake. Meanwhile, have a wine/beer while enjoying sunset reflections of the salty ground. Overnight camping in Hamed Ale.

Day 03: Hamad Ela – Dallol – Mekelle         

Waking up early morning, set off to dallol which is known for its various acidic colors with fumaroles, small spitting acid springs, and lakes. At the same time, dallol is also considered the hottest place on earth. Due to its incredible colors, you feel like you are in Mars. Visiting different terrestrial places formed by volcanic activity like salt mountain and the bubbling oily lake creates a different experience of your trip. Finally, drive back to Hamad Ela for lunch and proceed to Mekelle. Overnight in Mekelle (Hotel).

Day 04: Mekelle – Lalibela

After breakfast embark on a full day of drive to Lalibela.  On the way you will pass through several small villages, with typical sandstone homes of the Tigray people.  Driving through those eye-catchy rural areas you will proceed to the stunning place known to be home for Ethiopia’s most prized destination – Lalibela.  Overnight in Lalibela (hotel).

Day 05: Lalibela

In the morning, you will start by visiting the Northwestern cluster of churches – Bet Medhane Alem, Bet Maryam, Bet Meskel, Bet Danaghel, Bet Mikael & Bet Golgotha (where entry is not permitted for women).  After lunch, continue with the Southeastern Cluster of churches – Bet Gabriel-Rufael, Bet Merkorios, Bet Amanual, and Bet Abba Libanos.  Finally, you will visit the most famous of all the churches – Bet Giyorgis, constructed in honor of the patron saint of Ethiopia – Saint George.  Overnight in Lalibela (hotel).

The Church of Saint George, Lalibela
The Church of Saint George, one of eleven rock-hewn monolithic churches in Lalibela.
Day 06: Lalibela – Gonder

On this day morning you will use local flight from Lalibela to Gonder for 3-days Simien Mountains trekking. After arriving in Gonder, we will visit the city of Gonder mainly the Fasil Castel and the Felasha Gimb. Overnight Gonder (hotel)

Facilides' Castle
The Fasil Ghebbi, masoned building built by Emperor Fasilides who founded Gondar in 1636.
Day 07: Gonder – Simien Mountains

Early morning drive from Gondar to Sankaber about 136km away.  We will go via the park head office in Debark to register and pick up trek staff such as scout, guide and cook.   After trekking for 3 or 4 hours we return to the Sankabar camp. Overnight open-air camping.

Day 08: Sankaber – Geech

After breakfast, we start hiking from Sankaber to Geech which is 3600m above sea level and takes about 5 to 6 hours passing through ever more spectacular scenery and varying flowers and trees. There the possibility to see a klipspringer and minlik bushbuk as well as a leopard. The entertaining gelada baboons are always around. Along the way we pass the 500m high Jinbar waterfall and stop for lunch on the banks of the Jinbar river.  We pass through Geech village where we can have coffee with a local family in their traditional tukul hut which they share with their animals.  This is a great way to glimpse the day-to-day life of the mountain people.  Overnight at Geech camping.

Day 09: Geech – Ambaras – Gonder

On the final day of our Simien Mountains trekking we will start by hiking to Ambaras for about 5 to 6 hours. On the way we will visit Imet Gogo, the single most spectacular spot in the whole of the Simien Mountains.   Imet Gogo, at 3926m above sea level has 3600 views of canyons, cliffs and valleys that look as if they go on forever.  Finally, drive back to Gonder from Ambaras. Late afternoon flight to Addis Ababa. Tour Ends!

Are you interested on our four days danakil depression tour?

There are a variety of trails to choose from, ranging from easy to challenging. Hiking in the Simien Mountains is a great way to see the amazing scenery and wildlife of the region.

Some other interesting facts about the Simien Mountains

  • The highest peak in the Simien Mountains is Ras Dashen, which is 4,533 meters (14,872 feet) tall.
  • The peaks of the Simien Mountains were formed millions of years ago by volcanic activity.
  • The peaks are made up of a type of rock called gneiss, which is very hard and resistant to erosion.
  • The peaks of the Simien Mountains are a popular destination for hiking and trekking. There are a variety of trails to choose from, ranging from easy to challenging.
  • The peaks of the Simien Mountains are also a popular destination for bird watching. Over 130 species of birds have been recorded in the Simien Mountains, including the Lammergeier, a vulture that soars high in the sky and can carry prey weighing up to 15 kilograms (33 pounds).
  • The Simien Mountains are also home to a number of endemic plants, including the giant lobelia, a flowering plant that can grow up to 10 meters (33 feet) tall.