Details of Five Day Tigray and Axum Tour
DAY ONE: ADDIS ABABA - AXUM
You'll set off after breakfast and board your scheduled flight to Axum (sometimes known as Aksum), the site of some of Ethiopia's most storied ruins.
Upon arrival, you'll check into your hotel before venturing out to the Northern Stelae field to see the 4th century obelisks that lend the region its name. While all of the tombs excavated so far have been robbed centuries ago, more than 90% of the ancient burial sites remain unearthed!
You'll then embark on a day of discovery as you explore the ruins of Dungur, better known as the Queen of Sheba's Palace, as well as the tombs of ancient figures such as King Kaleb, King Gebre Meskel, and more.
You'll then proceed to St. Mary's of Zion Cathedral, fabled home of the Ark of the Covenant. Not only is this4th century church said to be home to the Biblical artefact, it is also where ancient Axum Emperors and Empresses were crowned.
A visit to the archaeological museum will further enhance your knowledge of the ancient kingdom.
Bathed in the history of the Ancient Kingdom of Axum, you'll overnight nearby.
DAY TWO: AXUM - HAWZEN
You'll set off after breakfast and begin the drive towards Hawzen.
Your drive takes you by the Adwa Ranges, where the Battle of Adwa took place in 1896. The site of the final and deciding battle in the war between Italy and Ethiopia, Adwa is an important symbol of Ethiopian independence in the face of European aggression.
After paying your respects to those who fell in battle, you'll continue on to the 5th century Sabean Temple at Yeha.
You'll finish your day's journey in Hawzen, where you'll be afforded a spectacular view of the stark Gheralta Mountains.
DAY THREE: HAWZEN
You'll set off after breakfast for a day of exploration in which you'll visit the churches of Maryam Korkor and Yohannes Maequdi.
Your tour starts with the climb to Maryam Korkor, which is one of the largest rock-hewn churches in the region. Carved into the very face of a cliff, it is a truly awe-inspiring sight.
After lunch, you'll proceed to the impressive Yohannes Maequdi Church, carved into the very foundations of the earth and a fine example of the rock-hewn churches of Tigray.
Afterwards, you'll have some free time to hike around the region and visit other churches at your leisure.
DAY FOUR: HAWZEN - TIGRAY - MEKELE
It's another day of historic and religious exploration today, as you'll venture into the Tigray region once again to explore more of its famous churches.
Your first stop will be the Church of Degoum Selassie in Degoum, a fine example of Christian-Ethiopian architecture. You'll then continue on to the more famous churches of Abraha and Atsbeha, which better exemplify the rock-hewn church style for which Ethiopia is famous. Dedicated to the Axumite Kings responsible for introducing Christianity to Ethiopia, they are outstanding examples of the architectural style.
After lunch in the village of Wukro, you'll visit the local Wukro Cherkos Church before overnighting in the area.
DAY FIVE: MEKELE - ADDIS ABABA
You'll board a morning flight to Addis Ababa, where you will finish your Ethiopian adventure with a tour of the nation's capital.
Your Addis Ababa tour will include a visit to the National Museum as well as the historic Trinity Cathedral to soak in the nation's fascinating Christian history.
Another highlight of your day is sure to be the chance to take in the city from atop Mount Entoto.