Ethiopia is an extraordinary country with the history and culture very distinctive to other countries in the region. It is also very diverse and culture, language, religions and customs vary depending on the province or town.

The Christian north amaze with castles, churches, religious events and devotion. The main sights are Lalibela town for its UNESCO listed rock-hewn churches, especially the church of St. George.

The north-east frontier with Eritrea is home to Afar people and one of the most inhospitable places on earth: Danakil Depression. Its salt deserts and lakes, camale caravans and moon-like landscape is a must see although not that easy accessible and requires to sign up to an organised Danakil tour.

In the tribal south you will encounter nationalities of nomads and pastoralists, small and secluded groups of traditionally living animalists. A tour to Omo Valley will let you get inside this fascinating world of true Africa.

However if you only have one or two days to spare in Ethiopia on your stopover in Addis Ababa city you still can get to know this amazing country, I recommend doing it through your stomach and try a culinary tour or even a cooking course of Ethiopian food.

Five world famous things Westerners do not know Ethiopia is connected to or is the origin of:

  1. The word 'coffee' as well as the drink itself comes from Abyssinian (Ethiopian) region of Kaffa.
  2. Ethiopian are mostly Orthodox christians. Their country was the second in the world to adopt christianity as the state religion (after Armenia) even before the Roman Empire.
  3. Ethiopian believe the Arc of Covenant resides in their country. It was brought there by the Queen of Sheba from Jerusalem - as a gift from biblical king Solomon.
  4. Ethiopia is the only African country having been never colonialised. Even though Italians occupied it for a couple of years in the 30/40s it has never been conquered.
  5. Rastafarian worshippers whom Bob Marley was the most famous representative built their name and religion around Ethiopia. In fact the name Rastafarian comes from Ras Tafari which was the true name of Haile Selassie, the last emperor of Ethiopia.