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National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Temple of Yeha

It is an important pre-Axumite archaeological site mainly known by the large square temple and dated to 500B.C. The temple was built using stone blocks without mortar, and is supposed to be the oldest building in Ethiopia. The ruins of the temple consist of a single roofless oblong chamber. The remaining one wall of the temple is still standing to a height of 12 meters. Many stone-carved inscriptions were also discovered in and around Yeha. They are most likely the earliest inscriptions that have ever been discovered in Ethiopia.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Axum and its ancient civilizations

For a large number of years in ancient time, Axum had been served as a political and religious center of Ethiopia. It was the capital of the Axumite Kingdome and considered as the first well-known permanent capital in the history of the country. It has still a considerable symbolic role for the Ethiopian church and state. During its long history, Axum greatly contributed too many human developments. It has been a repository of tremendous archeological and historical treasures including the steel, the rock-tombs, temples, the palaces, the stone thrones and others.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Gondar and its Medieval period palaces, Castl

The historic Gonderine town is very popular mainly because of the marvelous castles in the royal enclosure. There are six graceful castles in the palace compound built by the successive Gonderine Kings of the 17th and 18th centuries. The tradition was first set by Emperor Fassiledes and then followed by his successors. The castle were built from local stone, hard dark brown basalt and red volcanic lava held together with lime mortar within the fortified royal compound at aboubt 70,000 square meters. The 12 symbolic entrances (gates) of the palace compound have various names and represent the 12 apostles of Jesus Christ.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Ankober & Emperor Menelik II Palace

Ankober was the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Shoa, with Merid Azmatch Amha Iyesus (1745-1775), a ruler descended from the Solomonic dynasty, credited as being the founder. His descendents ruled from Ankober for around a hundred years and a number of Shoan rulers are buried in churches in the area.

During the reign of Emperor Menelik II, Britain, France and Italy established diplomatic missions in Ankober, and the sites of their missions can still be distinguished. Menelik married Itegue Taytu at the Ankober Medhane Alem Church, where the golden wedding cloak is still kept. In 1886 Menelik decided to move the capital to its current location, Addis Ababa.

There are many famous Ethiopian Orthodox monasteries and churches in the area surrounding Ankober, including Mantiq a nearby monastery with Judeo-Christian traditions. The nineteenth century Catholic missionary, Aba Massayas, started missionary activities in neighboring Fiqre Gimb, making the area one of the most important historical centers of Catholicism in Ethiopia.

Ankober Palace hill overlooks the spectacular scenery of the Rift Valley, stretching from the Red Sea to the plains of Afar Region.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Lalibela and Rock-hewn Churches

The beginning of rock-cut churches in Ethiopia is dated to the 6th century by the Nine Saints. This rock-church tradition is associated with the birth and burial places of Jesus Christ, which were a cave in Bethelem and carved rock in Gologotha, respectively. In addition to this symbolic importance, churches were built from rocks perhaps for their physical durability and long-lasting.

Although the tradition of rock-hewn church excavation was started earlier in 6th century, it reached at its high level of development during the period of Zagwe Dyansty, particularly during the reign of King Lalibela in the 12th century. In this regard, the famous rock-hewn churches of Laiblea are best examples.
The prominent rock-hewn churches of Lalibela are eleven in number and situated in three groups separated by the seasonal river Jordan. Churches of the first group are believed to have been built first and are usually visited first by many of the tourists. They are Bete Medhane-Alem, Bete Mariam, Bete Mesekel, Bete Denagel, Bete Golgotha and Bete Debre Sina. Churches of the second group are situated south of the Jordan River and comprise Bete Gabriel, Bete Amanuel, Bete Merkorios, and Bete Abba Libanos. In the third group, there is only one isolated church i.e Bete Giorgis. It is located a few minutes walk to the south west of both the first and second group of churches.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Debre Damo Monastery

Debre Damo monastery is situated on an isolated mountain in northern part of Tigray. It is unique compared with most Ethiopian monasteries. Debre Damo was built, in the 6th century AD, with curved wood panels, painted ceilings and walls dedicated to the legend of Saint (Abune) Aregawi. The history of Debre Damo is centered on the "Nine Saints" who came to Ethiopia from Syria to spread Christianity in the Tigray region. One of them was Saint Aregawi who settled on the mountain of Debre Damo. The other eight saints settled around Tigray countryside and all have their own church named after them.

Debre Damo is only accessible by climbing up by a rope, which is made of "plaited leather", lowered from the cliffs, which visitors tie around their waist and are then pulled up by a monk at the top of the cliffs. It is only accessible to men and male animals. Women and even female animals are forbidden to set a foot into the monastery, and must remain under the cliffs and pray from there.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Adwa

Adwa (also spelled Adowa, Aduwa, or Adua in Italian) is a market town and separate woreda in northern Ethiopia, and best known as the community closest to the decisive Battle of Adowa fought in 1896 with Italian troops. Notably, Ethiopian soldiers won the battle, thus being the only African nation to thwart European colonialism.

There are several places of sightseeing in Adwa, Ethiopia. You can visit to these places while you come to this one of the most popular tourist destination of Ethiopia. Adwa, Ethiopia is home to a number of famous churches. Adwa Awraja Fird Bet is the most popular church of Adwa. This church was established in several years back. You can see the superb architecture of this church. Adwa Gebri'el Bet was established by Dejazmach Wolde Gebriel in several years back. Adwa Maryam Bet, one of the most popular churches, was built by Ras Anda Haymanot.

Adwa Medhane `Alem Bete, Adwa Nigiste Saba Huletenya Dereja Timhirt Bet and Adwa Selasse Bet are some other renowned churches of this place. You can also visit Abba Garima Monastery near Adwa. This was established by one of the Nine Saints on sixth century. This is also recognized for its tenth century creeds. After traveling to plenty of churches, you can take a trip to the village of Fremona. This village had been the main place for the Jesuits in 16th century.

Still you can take trips to various other tourist destinations around Adwa such as: the ancient temple of Axum, Yeha, Debre Damo Monastery, the rock hewn churches of Tigray, Gheralta cluster, and Mekle.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Guzara (Susenoys) Castle

It is located 145km from Bahir Dar on the road to Gonder and easily visible from the main road. It is regard to have been built for Emperor Sarsa Dengle (1571-1572). Guzara’s architectural resemblance to the Gondarine castle has led recent expert speculation that it was built by Susneyos or Fassilidas rather than Sarsa Dengle.

National Tour Operation and Travel Agency

Debre Libanos Monastery

Ethiopia’s most holy sites of Debre Libanos monastery (110km ADD) founded in the 13th century by priest Tekla Haimanot ,today one of Ethiopia’s most renowned saints. The church has beautiful Stained glass windows, and contains mosaic figures, which is found in the facade and some interesting mural paintings by the well-known Ethiopian artist Afework Tekele.