info@vastethiopiatours.com
+251-912-071-695
Duration: 12 Days

Ethiopia has more than 80 ethnicities living within its borders, all speaking different languages and practicing different customs. VAST’s Southern Cultural Route takes travelers to the heart of the most remote tribes, whose animist beliefs strike a chord with the true African experience.

We start in Addis Ababa and drive south to visit the Gurage people and visit various archaeological sites and a rock-hewn church reminding us just how far south the Christian kings extended their religion. We continue south and visit the Dorze people who live high above Arba Minch in the Guge Mountains. After returning to the Rift Valley, we take a look at the Nechisar National Park.

From Arba Minch we journey in the Omo Valley and its main town, Jinka. The road through the Omo Valley brings you closer to dozens of different tribes who for centuries lived isolation from the rest of the world, but who’s future is now more and more connected not only to global tourism but also the Ethiopian government’s interest in the fertile lands around the Omo River. Over the next decades, the Karo, Hamer, Erbore, Surma, and the famous Mursi will all face decisions on how to carry their people forward in the face of a changing world. Here today, the traveler can still catch a glimpse of the past.

Each tribe has its own distinctive characteristics and traditional ways of life. For example, the Mursi and Surma are famous for lip plates, while the Arbore and Hamer, for body painting and scarring.

VAST believes that each culture, each tribe is a treasure. We strive to treat the people as well as their lands with the utmost respect. VAST only uses local tour associations that benefit the entire tribe or village. A delicate balance of respect, development and preservation is necessary to preserve what has existed for so long.

  • Itinerary

    Day 1 Arrival in Addis Ababa. Overnight Kaleb Hotel
    Day 2 Drive to Hosana: en route visit Melka Kunture archaeological sites, the rock-hewn church of Adadi Maryam, and the Tiya stelea, all located in the region of the Gurage people.
    Day 3 Drive to Arba Minch: en route visit Dorze village Chencha. Overnight Paradise Lodge.
    Day 4 Full day Arba Minch: visit Nechisar National Park and boat excursion on Lake Chamo.
    Day 5 Drive to Jinka: en route visit Konso and Tsemay Villages. Overnight Jinka Resort.
    Day 6 Full day in Jinka: drive through the Mago National Park to visit the Mursi village. Overnight Jinka Resort.
    Day 7 Drive to Turmi village: visit the Hamer people and overnight camping.
    Day 8 Drive to Maruelle: visit the Karo people and overnight camping.
    Day 9 Drive to Omorate: visit the Dasinech people and overnight camping.
    Day 10 Drive to Yabello: en route visit Arbore and Borena villages. Overnight Yabello Motel.
    Day 11 Drive to Yergalem: en route visit the Sidama people and the coffee plantation. Overnight Aregash Lodge.
    Day 12 Drive to Addis Ababa: evening farewell party and departure.
    *Lodges can replace camping upon request.
    *Camping gear can be provided upon request.

 

Photo Gallery of the Tribes

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