Out Representative will meet and greet you and your group at the Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa and transfer you to the hotel. Overnight stay in Ghion Hotel.
After having breakfast explore Addis Ababa beginning with the National Museum and the Ethnological Museum, which is the former palace of Emperor Haile Selassie I. After lunch, take time to experience the Holy Trinity Cathedral and visit the Mercato, the largest open-air market in Africa. Overnight stay in Ghion Hotel
After early breakfast, drive east to Awash National Park. On the way visit the Lake Basaka and visit the Awash National Park especially the waterfall. Overnight stay in Awash Falls Lodge.
Today an early drive after breakfast takes you to Semera through the Yangudi-Rassa National Park (home to the endangered African wild ass). In Semera you will get your Afar permits and we will pick up the mandatory scouts and road leaders. Overnight stay in local hotel in Semera.
Lake Afdera is a wonderfully bright green lake situated with black basalt mountains in the backdrop, a truly stunning location. Here you will see further Afar nomads engaged in salt extraction from the lakebed. Salt extraction here is the main supply of salt to Addis Ababa. Overnight in Semera at local hotel.
An early morning drive to the trailhead of the volcano Erta Ale via Kusawad. The Erta Ale volcano has been in a constant state of eruption for over 40 years. You will camp in the village of El Dom, where it will be an early-to-bed night camping.
Today is an early-to-rise start at 2am to start the two-hour hike to the rim of the Erta Ale volcano. At the top, you will peer down at the lava lake as it bubbles and explodes while the sun rises over the horizon. Definitely the highlight of the trip! After the hike back to camp and a bit of breakfast, you’ll continue driving to Hamed Ila for overnight camping.
After breakfast, take a day trip to the sulfur springs of Dallol, which at 116m below sea level is the lowest point on the African continent. Here the landscape comes in extraordinary shades of red and yellow from the hot water, acids and minerals spurting up from the ground. You will also visit Lake Asale, which is the salt lake from which many Afar nomads extract salt. Interact with the Afari traders and try to remove salt form the crust and create your own block of salt. At the end of the day we return to Hamed Ila for overnight camping.
Drive from Hamed Ila to Mekelle via Berehale and see the camel caravans along the way carrying salt from the salt lake to the highlands to trade in Mekelle. Overnight stay in Mekelle at Abreha’s Castle Hotel, a 19th-century mansion overlooking the city.
In the morning after having a breakfast, take a short flight back to Addis Ababa. You will arrive in Addis Ababa with time to do some souvenir shopping, enjoy a farewell dinner and check-in for flight back home.