Awash National Park

Tariku W/aregay Says:
August 28, 2008 at 6:51 pm e

Dear Philip,

I am a friend of Jacinta Beehner and Thore Bergman, the gelada baboon researchers up on the Semien mountain whom you might have meet few years back and gave you my information about specialty on trekking and tours in ( Awash, Harar, Bale and Omo Valley ). I am always great admire of your guide book and recommend it to every one. I just want to update you with my few changes on my website and e-mail: and ( telephone and fax is the same 00251 911 62 06 35 ) address and I have more activities now. I have up upgraded and started working in the north routes for trekking and historical tours, beside keeping the specialization on Awash, Harar, Bale and Omo valley. Recreantly we also have been working with the big filming and reporting companies like BBC natural history unit from UK and New York times from US. You can contact Patrick Morries from BBC on his e-mail

And Danielle pergament on her E-mail for reference, Jacinta and Throe as well. As I am originally from Awash National park ( you can see more detail on my website about personal biography) I have started working on support of national parks conservation , we organize volunteering service from all of the world to support better conservation of this national park. People can see our activities on our website Save Awash National Park. I hope my new information will help you for updates and I will keep on contributing any things new shows up. Keep up the good work.


Tariku W/aregay
EL-TA Tours Ethiopia
Tour operation Manager

Ruth Radetsky’s updates

Here is some feeback, based on two weeks in Addis, Bahir Dar, Axum,  Lalibela, Dire Dawa, and Harar, traveling mostly by plane, but also by car-and-driver (Addis-Bahir Dar) and mini-bus (Dire Dawa-Harar-Dire Dawa).

First, traveling was much, much easier than I thought.  We did fly,  but ET is an excellent airline.  They were easy to deal with, flights were mostly on time, transfers were always easy even if occasionally over priced.  Hotels on the northern circuit were much better than I expected, based on your stringent warnings and Liza Cody’s novel Rift.  There was running water, few or no bugs, electricity, and clean seets everywhere.  We tended to stay in the better (or best) hotel available, but not always.  True, beds were often too hard or too soft or pillows were lumpy — but compared to the lives of most Ethiopians, we were staying in unimaginable luxury.  The Tukul Village hotel in Lalibela, though extremely expensive at a non-negotiable 450 birr, was one of the half dozen best value-for-money hotels we’ve had in 9 months traveling on 4 continents.  The rooms are intelligently designed, the modern plumbing has everything I wanted (two towels each AND a bathmat, a closed stall that didn’t drip on the floor, clean) the beds are comfortable, the design is unobtrusively traditional. True, the landscaping is nothing, but with views forever from our private balcony, that was forgivable.

The philatelic museum in Addis is of interest to more than philatelists–I was dragged in by my traveling companion, and had a delightful hour.  The stamps commemorating Ethiopia’s union with Eritrea were particularly interesting at this tense time.

I’m not a birder, but I was blown away by the bird life, which became a focus of the trip.  I had no idea that could happen.  I wish you had line drawings of the birds like you did of the mammals. . .  I don’t know how hard up against your page limit you are.

Most important:  Ethiopian Christianity is such a theme of any trip to the north.  It would really have enriched my time understanding had you had a brief discussion of the differences between Ethiopian and Western (Roman Catholic?) belief and practice.  Again, I don’t know how hard up against your page count you are.

Michela Wrong’s 2005 book, _I Didn’t Do It For You:  How the _, a  history of the making of Eritrea, is an extremely readable, journalistic (she writes for the Financial Times) history.  Although her focus is Eritrea, you can’t write about Eritrea without writing about Ethiopia.  It really enriched my understanding of much that I saw here, especially that Ethiopia had never been colonized.  I don’t generally have much patience for non-fiction, but this was compelling

TESFA Calendar & News

Dear Friends and Supporters

TESFA’s new calendar is now ready.  It begins on 01 September and ends on 31st September. It is in the same format as last years very popular calendar with stunning pictures of the Meket escarpement and trekking for each month. Each month showing the western calendar in black also shows the Ethiopian calendar in red with Saint’s days and other important celebrations and dates clearly marked.
A must for anyone planning a trip to Ethiopia, and a lovely reminder of a trip already done.
Copies will be posted to anyone making a donation to TESFA to support our work with communities.
We are suggesting a minimum donation of 100 birr per calendar for those who can pick them up in person.
If posting them abroad we are suggesting $20US/ £10GBP / €13 Euro so that we can cover the postage.
To order a copy please contact myself or Hanna Girma on
TESFA has almost completed the base camp on Abuna Yoseph – Ethiopia’s 3rd highest massif (peak approx 4,300m), home to the rare and beautiful Ethiopian Wolf. The community run site will be open in October.  Additional community sites in Meket will also open soon after the end of the rains.  More details in the next issue of the newsletter.
Best regards