Visit Ethiopia

9) The Omo Valley

On Kenya’s northern border with Ethiopia lies Lake Turkana – also known as the Jade Sea. Linking to the Omo River, and into the lower Omo basin of Ethiopia, a journey into the Omo basin is a kaleidoscope of culture, tradition and terrain.

This is a journey into one of Africa’s last unexplored frontiers, where tourists are still a rarity and where the wildlife is still wild. This is also home to some of the last truly unchanged tribes-people within reach of the semi-civilized world.

The Omo Valley is cohabited by a colourful mix of tribes practising a mixture of pastoralism, small scale cattle herding and subsistence agriculture. The Karo are expert body painters, using clays and locally available vegetable pigments. Hamar women wear their hair in dense ringlets smeared with mud and clarified butter and topped off with head-dresses of aluminium. The men mould extravagant ochre mud caps.

10) Gondar

Founded by Emperor Fasilides in the 17th century, Gondar has been called the Camelot of Africa because of its castles and fortress-like battlements. The very presence of these castles in Africa make them a rare and imposing sight. Rich in history, ambassadors of the Moguls of the Ottoman Empire and of Louis XVI of France were once entertained here.

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