Overview – Ethiopia

Philip Briggs
Expert
By Philip Briggs

Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of many Bradt guidebooks to African destinations, including the guide to Ethiopia.

Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of the Bradt guidebook to Ethiopia.

Philip is the author of the Bradt guidebook to Ethiopia.

Awash in cultural attractions and dramatic scenery, Ethiopia is far from ordinary. The wildlife here does not appear anywhere else on earth. Memories of being surrounded by hundreds of gelada monkeys with their swirling golden manes and bold red chests will last a lifetime. As will driving the continent’s highest road to see an Ethiopian wolf – Africa’s most endangered carnivore.

Rates (USD) $250 to $600 pp/day
Best Time to Go Oct to Dec (Beautiful scenery, little rain)
High Season Oct to Jan (Some parks get busy)
Size 1,104,300km² / 426,373mi²

Pros & Cons

  • Spectacular scenery
  • Unusual wildlife
  • Off-the-beaten-track destination
  • Excellent birding
  • Little variety in wildlife
  • Only a few parks developed for tourism

Ethiopia Safari Reviews

  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding
  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding

Wildlife

You’ll be looking for some of Africa’s rarest and most endangered animals in Ethiopia. In Bale Mountains, you’ll see the Ethiopian wolf, which is classified as the world’s rarest dog species. In Simien Mountains National Park, you might spot the Walia ibex, Africa’s only wild goat. Other endemics you might want to track down are the mountain nyala and Swayne's hartebeest.

Weather & Climate

The majority of Ethiopia’s top tourist sites have highland locations where daytime temperatures are around 24°C/75°F, and evenings are cool. Bale and Simien Mountains are a bit colder and the Rift Valley is a few degrees warmer. Temperatures don’t vary much throughout the year, but rainfall does. There is a distinct Wet and Dry season, and most precipitation falls between May and September.

Best Time to Visit

There isn’t really a bad time to visit Ethiopia. Wildlife viewing isn’t strongly dependent on season. If you intend to do some hiking or camping, it might be wise to avoid the wettest months (July and August). The Dry season months from October to April are the most favorable for outdoor activities but bear in mind that Ethiopia’s spectacular scenery is at its best after the rains from September to December.

Premier Parks & Reserves

Want to Visit Ethiopia?

Ethiopia Safari Reviews

  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding
  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding
Most Helpful Expert Review
The Ethiopian highlands and its endemics
4/5

Ethiopia, though best known for its cultural attractions, offers some very interesting wildlife viewing. Most of the usual safari animals are absent or only survive marginally in remote parks seldom visited by tourists. The focus of most...

Latest User Review
Gerrud  –  
Germany DE
Reviewed: May 15, 2020
Ethiopia is awesome and allurung. The contry offers a varity on scenery and remarkable churches.
5/5

Our guides showed us their country from its best. I really enjoyed my trip to Ethiopia. The people were very frindly and did their best to show us the highlights of their contry. The trip was well organized and the guides gave us ample time...

Full Review