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For many, visiting Somaliland is somewhat of a traveler’s coup. While the country of Somalia is by and large too dangerous to visit, the northern region of Somaliland is a welcomed change from the perpetual violence plaguing the coastal country.
Join one of Vast Ethiopia’s most experienced guides and journey away from the Christian highlands of Ethiopia into the heart of Muslim East Africa and eventually to the shores the Indian Ocean.
Our adventure goes first to Ethiopia’s famed Awash National Park, complete with a gushing waterfall, hot springs, birding and game drive. Next spend a few days in the walled city of Harar, Islam’s most historical and holy city in the Horn. The 16th-century walled city, known as the Jugol, is nothing less than stimulating with its alleyways, whitewashed walls and more than 90 mosques. Visit Harar’s markets, courageous Hyena Man and excursions to the Babile Elephant Santuary.
Next, we undertake the border crossing, passing through the moonscape of the Valley of the Marvels and stop for lunch in Jijiga, the capital of Ethiopia’s Somali region. There we will finalize our papers that set us on the road towards Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland.
Once we are settled in Hargeisa, we will spend a day visiting the gold & money markets where businessmen carry their day’s money in wheelbarrows. As we continue through Somaliland we will be accompanied by local militia to provide “protection”. Somaliland’s autonomous government is concerned for every visitor’s well being and virtually guarantees no unwanted suprises.
Outside of Hargeisa, you will be one of a handful of people who have seen the intriguing Laas Geel Prehistoric Cave Paintings, over 10,000 years old and some of the best preserved in Africa. Next we will spend a few days in the coastal town of Berbera where local livelihoods depend on the sea. Jump into the tepid waters of the Gulf of Aden and check out amazing dive spots if interested.
The Somaliland visit will turn to unforgettable when we set off on a 2-Day Camel Safari down the Read Sea coastline. Enjoy the water and explore the craggy shores of what appears to be an untouched and virgin shoreline. The safari’s crew will take care of food, preparing a traditional Somali meal. Spend the night in a nomadic tent on the soft sands of the Indian Ocean.
Next, our tour cruises to high altitudes in Somaliland’s Togdheer highlands, where you finally can relax in cooler temperatures in the cozy town of Burco. After rest and recover, we return to Hargeisa to catch the flight back to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where we will spend a day shopping and visiting Ethiopia’s capital.