Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Gondar hotels

Posted: June 25, 2014 in Gonder, Uncategorized
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Elena, Teresa & Jaime write

We are a group of three travelling in the north area of Ethiopia!! We arrived yesterday night at Gondar & started looking for a good hotel to spend the night! We visited the Hibret Hotel (in the Bradt guide), but they treat to cheat as asking for 600 birr for a small twin dirty room! Afterwards we visited the Merkuriaw Alemaya Hotel, it still has very good prices (120\150 birr), not so good looking nor so clean, but not bad for the price.

Finally, by chance, we found the Michael Hotel (near to the L-Shape hotel). This hotel really merits your attention!!! Is really really clean, good looking, with white clean sheets and a well equipped bathroom with hot water and hydromassage shower and this twin room cost on ly 300 birr!!!! As we are three we are paying 350 birr for sharing the room, also because one of the beds is big enough. The staff is really friendly and they have free WiFi in all the floors!!

Our experience was so good, that we decided to Michael Hotel to your readers!

I’ve been trying to seek clarity on the situation with domestic fares since Ethiopian Airlines announced a 40% reduction in May (see http://www.newbusinessethiopia.com/index.php/en/market/106-travel-tips/799-ethiopian-airlines-cut-domestic-flights-rate-40)

So far as I can ascertain it, the full fare for most domestic flights, for instance booked through the website, remains about the same as it was before, typically around US$130 per leg.

However, it seems this fare has been vastly reduced (by more than 50%) to passengers who have booked their international flight to Addis Ababa with Ethiopia Airlines. In this case, the fare is typically around US$55-60 per leg!

So far as I understand it, to take advantage of this massive discount, you must first book, pay and be ticketed fir your international flights. With that ticket number, you or any operator can then book the domestic flights at any Ethiopian Airlines ticket office.

Of course, what happens in theory and in practice aren’t always quite the same thing, so feedback from anybody who tries this would be much appreciated!

 

 

 

 

 

I’ll be making two trips to Ethiopia later in the year to to the ground research for a revamped 7th edition of Bradt Ethiopia. I’ll be doing most of the ground work myself but would ideally want to find somebody based locally with some travel experience & reasonable writing skills to cover some of the more out-of-the-way areas in the second half of this year. If you are interested, please don’t respond below, but rather email me at phil [at] philipbriggs.com & philari [at] hixnet.co.za & we can take things from there. Thanks, Philip

Oromo People

Posted: April 27, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Inge Huver writes:

I just returned from my visit to Ethiopia and really liked the guidebook, in fact, my Ethiopian friends also liked it and I gave it to them as a present. Although, while reading we also saw one thing is completely wrong, and because it is a bit of a danger to use it in Ethiopia I’ll write it here. In the introduction, you write that hte Oromo people are also callad “Galla”. This is now a forbidden name, originally given to the people by their enemies. So using this name can give some problems.

Axum hotel feedback

Posted: May 13, 2013 in Uncategorized
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Susie Wieler writes:

I’m in Axum right now and after a horrible night at the Remhai Hotel, we found the new Sabean Hotel. It opened in November 2012 and we paid $89USD for a family suite with a very luxurious shower. It has a nice restaurant and café, as well as Wi-Fi in every room. We had lunch at the Yeha Hotel and asked to see their rooms, and the Sabean is definitely nicer and better value.

Link Ethiopia

Posted: April 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

Trixia Hayne writes: 

We were in Ethiopia working with Link Ethiopia (http://www.linkethiopia.org), a small British charity that aims to link schools in Ethiopia with partner schools in the UK, with a view to both educational support and cultural exchange.  The charity also supports schools directly through small-scale projects, and arranges for volunteers to teach English communication skills, as well as IT and (occasionally) PE; placements start from one month.

Price hike at Lalibela

Posted: March 12, 2013 in Lalibela, Uncategorized

Stephen Wood writes: Lalibela churches: since January (2013) the price of a ticket to visit the churches has been increased from $21 to $50! Our tour guide was quite apologetic about this, and said that the church authorities had insisted on this price hike. Still worth visiting them of course, but a bit annoying all the same. Panoramic View Hotel still looks nowhere near like finished (end January).

Ruth Scheufele writes:

Hello there, I would very much like to recommend an excellent tour guide for the Simien Mountains: Addis Yimer. Addis is the agency owner and was our travel guide for three days and he definitely did a fabulous job. He is from Debark and knows the area perfectly. Moreover, he is very knowledgeable and happy to answer all questions you might be interested in, especially about geology, flora and fauna – he is a very experienced guide. We can only highly recommend him and his agency. He organized everything very professionally and is very flexible concerning the schedule (our tour not only included the Simien Mountains but also the most important sights in Gonder and Wulkefit). His English is excellent and he is just a gorgeous guy! Before the trek, replies very promptly to any questions and adapts to all ideas, desires or preferences you might have.

The trek has been very enjoyable and next time we would definitely choose Addis Yimer again. Thanks to the whole team who accompanied us – keep up the great work!

Further information is available on http://www.ethiopiaecotourandtrek.com/

 

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We travelled to the Simien mountains in May this year and it was an amazing experience. After a lot of internet research we settled on a 6 night trek organised by Yalew Tafete (www.guide-ethiopia.com). We cannot recommend him enough. The trek we chose was a highland to lowland trek but Yalew can arrange treks to suit your needs. He is from Debark so is also a local person. While it is possible to just show up at the park office in Debark and arrange a guide, scout, cook, and mule handlers (or in fact to simply take a scout) if you are time constrained we highly recommend using Yalew. We were really impressed with Yalew’s organisation and, if you can afford it, think that it enhances the experience to have a full compliment of local people to join you on the trek. Yalew met us at the airport in Gondar and from there everything went seamlessly. He checked on our dietary requirements and made sure we had enough clothing and bedding. He had also pre-arranged a driver to get to the start of the trek and the trekking crew. For two of us we considered it good value for money and the cost would reduce further the more people were part of the group. While we did not require any additional arrangement, Yalew can help organise internal travel and any other activities you require.

As for the trek itself it was one of the best things we have done. May is a low season as it is the dry season and the highlands do not have the lush greenness that is present from October to January. Although we would like to go back at that time of year to experience the scenery it did not diminish our experience and as an advantage there are not as many trekkers, with just a handful of groups in the camps each night. The trek has great variety from wildlife (the gelada monkeys, walia ibex, ethiopian wolves (if you are lucky) and great variety of birds; the astounding canyons and scenery as you walk along the escarpment; and the opportunity to meet and interact with the locals. Highlights were out stays in the grounds of local schools and the coffee ceremony we had with our scout Noor’s relatives. We also had a wonderful trekking crew. Eyosi Worede was an exceptional guide who has impressive knowledge of almost everything to do with the region and is wonderfully friendly and good company. Kadir and Moorat achieved culinary feats with just a single gas cooker (even baking a birthday cake!) and Noor proved himself very adept at wrangling to many local children that you meet along the way. We would recommend, however, taking a good supply of pens and other things of use for the children as they are incredibly appreciative of anything you can offer. We also took some old clothing that we were able to distribute at the end of the trek.

We would say it is a once in a lifetime experience, but we are already planning a return trip.

Gareth and Alice