Visit Ethiopia

Ethiopia

Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a landlocked country in the East Africa. It shares borders with Eritrea to the north, Djibouti to the northeast, Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, South Sudan to the west and Sudan to the northwest. With over 109 million inhabitants as of 2019, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and the second-most populous nation on the African continent (after Nigeria). The country has a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi). Its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa, which lies a few miles west of the East African Rift that splits the country into the African and Somali tectonic plates. Ethiopian national identity is grounded in the historic and contemporary roles of Christianity and Islam, and the independence of Ethiopia from foreign rule, stemming from the various ancient Ethiopian kingdoms of antiquity.

Good to know

Languages
Amharic
Currencies
Birr, (ETB)
Population
109.224.414 million
Time Zone
UTC+3 (EAT)
Visitors / year
880.000 million
Capital
Addis Ababa

More about Ethiopia

Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a landlocked country in the East Africa. It shares borders with Eritrea to the north, Djibouti to the northeast, Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, South Sudan to the west and Sudan to the northwest. With over 109 million inhabitants as of 2019, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and the second-most populous nation on the African continent (after Nigeria). The country has a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi). Its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa, which lies a few miles west of the East African Rift that splits the country into the African and Somali tectonic plates. Ethiopian national identity is grounded in the historic and contemporary roles of Christianity and Islam, and the independence of Ethiopia from foreign rule, stemming from the various ancient Ethiopian kingdoms of antiquity.

Some of the oldest skeletal evidence for anatomically modern humans has been found in Ethiopia. It is widely considered as the region from which modern humans first set out for the Middle East and places beyond. According to linguists, the first Afroasiatic-speaking populations settled in the Horn region during the ensuing Neolithic era. Tracing its roots to the 2nd millennium BC, Ethiopia's governmental system was a monarchy for most of its history. Oral literature tells that the monarchy was founded by the Solomonic dynasty of the Queen of Sheba, under its first king, Menelik I. In the first centuries, the Kingdom of Aksum maintained a unified civilization in the region, followed by the Ethiopian Empire c. 1137.

During the late–19th-century Scramble for Africa, Ethiopia and Liberia were the only two nations that preserved their sovereignty from long-term colonisation by a European colonial power, and many newly-independent nations on the continent subsequently adopted its flag colours. However, the country was later occupied by Italy in 1936 and became Italian Ethiopia (part of Italian East Africa), until it was liberated during World War II. During the Italian rule, the government abolished slavery, a practice that existed in the country for centuries, and urbanization steadily increased. Ethiopia was also the first independent African member of the 20th-century League of Nations and the United Nations. In 1974, the Ethiopian monarchy under Haile Selassie was overthrown by the Derg, a communist military government backed by the Soviet Union. In 1987, the Derg established the People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, but it was overthrown in 1991 by the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, which has been the ruling political coalition since.

Ethiopia and Eritrea use the ancient Ge'ez script, which is one of the oldest alphabets still in use in the world. They follow the Ethiopian calendar, which is approximately seven years and three months behind the Gregorian calendar. A majority of the population adheres to Christianity (mainly the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and P'ent'ay), and the historical Kingdom of Aksum was one of the first states to officially adopt the religion, whereas around a third follows Islam (primarily Sunni). The country is the site of the Islamic Migration to Abyssinia and the oldest Muslim settlement in Africa, at Negash. A substantial population of Ethiopian Jews, known as Bete Israel, also resided in Ethiopia until the 1980s. Ethiopia is a multilingual nation, with around 80 ethnolinguistic groups, the four largest of which are the Oromo, Amhara, Somali and Tigrayans. Most people in the country speak Afroasiatic languages of the Cushitic or Semitic branches. Additionally, Omotic languages are spoken by ethnic minority groups inhabiting the southern regions. Nilo-Saharan languages are also spoken by the nation's Nilotic ethnic minorities. Oromo is the most populous language by native speakers, while Amharic is the most populous by number of total speakers and serves as the working language in the federal government. Ge'ez remains important as a liturgical language for both the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church and for the Beta Israel.

The nation is a land of natural contrasts, with its vast fertile west, its forests and its numerous rivers, and the world's hottest settlement of Dallol in its north. The Ethiopian Highlands are the largest continuous mountain ranges in Africa, and the Sof Omar Caves contains the largest cave on the continent. Ethiopia also has the second-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Africa. Additionally, the sovereign state is a founding member of the UN, the Group of 24 (G-24), the Non-Aligned Movement, the G77 and the Organisation of African Unity. Its capital city, Addis Ababa, serves as the headquarters of the African Union, the Pan African Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the African Standby Force and many of the global NGOs focused on Africa. In the 1970s and 1980s, Ethiopia experienced civil conflicts and communist purges, which hindered its economy. The country has since recovered and as of 2010 has the largest economy (by GDP) in East Africa, as well as having the largest population in the region. Despite these improvements, it remains one of the world's poorest countries. In addition to poverty, Ethiopia faces hunger, corruption, weak infrastructure, and poor respect for human rights and access to health and education (with an illiteracy rate of 51%), ranking in the worst quartile on the Human Development Index.

VISA Requirements

The eVisa for Ethiopia is an electronic travel authorization for foreigners with a passport of any of the eligible countries. It was introduced by the Government of Ethiopia to reduce unnecessary time at the immigration offices and make it easier to cross the border.

The validity is one year since it is issued and it allows you to enter the country multiple times for 30 or 90 consecutive days (depending on your choice).

Start Visa Application

Requirements for eVisa for Ethiopia

Before applying, prepare the following information:

  • A passport valid for at least 6 months from the date of your arrival
  • An up-to-date passport size full-face color photo with white background
  • An email address
  • A valid debit or credit card

Be aware that getting an eVisa does not guarantee entry to the country. The immigration officers will review your request and they reserve the right to deny entering Ethiopia without any reason.

How to apply for an Electronic Visa

Now that you have all the documents mentioned above ready, pay attention to the following details and follow this easy process:

  • Introduce correctly all your personal details as they appear in the documents such as the number of your personal passport
  • Type accurately the number of your working debit or credit card
  • Once you have finished your application, we will send you an email with a link to check its status

As soon as it is approved and depending on your choice, you will receive your eVisa within 24 or 48 hours directly in your email inbox. Even if it is not strictly necessary, we always recommend carrying a printed version of the approved document with you.

Lalibela

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Lalibela is a town in Lasta Amhara Region, Ethiopia famous for its rock-cut monolithic churches. The whole of Lalibela is a large antiquity of the medieval and post-medieval civilization of Ethiopia. Lalibela is one of Ethiopia's holiest cities, second only to Axum, and a center of pilgrimage. Unlike Axum, the population of Lalibela is almost completely Ethiopian Orthodox Christian.

Ethiopia was one of the earliest nations to adopt Christianity in the first half of the 4th century, and its historical roots date to the time of the Apostles. The churches themselves date from the 7th to 13th centuries, and are traditionally dated to the reign of the Zagwe king Gebre Mesqel Lalibela (r. ca. 1181–1221).

The layout and names of the major buildings in Lalibela are widely accepted, especially by local clergy, to be a symbolic representation of Jerusalem. This has led some experts to date the current church forms to the years following the capture of Jerusalem in 1187 by the Muslim leader Saladin.

Lalibela is located in the North Wollo Zone of the Amhara Region, at roughly 2,500 metres (8,200 ft) above sea level. It is the main town in Lasta woreda, which was formerly part of Bugna woreda. The Rock-Hewn Churches were declared a World Heritage site in 1978.

Harar

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StanleyHarar is a walled city in eastern Ethiopia. It is known in Arabic as the City of Saints (Arabic: مدينة الأَوْلِيَاء‎).

Harar is the capital of the East Hararghe Zone and the capital of the Harari Region of Ethiopia. The city is located on a hilltop in the eastern extension of the Oromia, about five hundred kilometers from the national capital Addis Ababa at an elevation of 1,885 metres (6,184 ft). Based on figures from the Central Statistical Agency in 2005, Harar had an estimated total population of 122,000, of whom 60,000 were male and 62,000 were female. According to the census of 1994, on which this estimate is based, the city had a population of 76,378.

For centuries, Harar has been a major commercial center, linked by the trade routes with the rest of Ethiopia, the entire Horn of Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and, through its ports, the outside world. Harar Jugol, the old walled city, was listed as a World Heritage Site in 2006 by UNESCO in recognition of its cultural heritage. Because of Harar's long history of involvement during times of trade in the Arabian Peninsula, the Government of Ethiopia has made it a criminal offence to demolish or interfere with any historical sites or fixtures in the city. These include stone homes, museums and items discarded from war. According to UNESCO, it is "considered 'the fourth holy city' of Islam" with 82 mosques, three of which date from the 10th century, and 102 shrines.

Yahyá Naṣrallāh's Fatḥ Madīnat Harar, an unpublished history of the city in the 13th century, records that the qadi Abadir Umar ar-Rida and several other religious leaders settled in Harar c. 1216 (612 AH). Harar was later made the new capital of the Adal Sultanate in 1520 by the Sultan Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad. The city saw a political decline during the ensuing Emirate of Harar, only regaining some significance in the Khedivate of Egypt period. During the Ethiopian Empire, the city decayed while maintaining a certain cultural prestige.

Danakil Depression

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The Danakil Depression is the northern part of the Afar Triangle or Afar Depression in Ethiopia, a geological depression that has resulted from the divergence of three tectonic plates in the Horn of Africa.

The Danakil Depression lies at the triple junction of three tectonic plates and has a complex geological history. It has developed as a result of Africa and Asia moving apart, causing rifting and volcanic activity. Erosion, inundation by the sea, the rising and falling of the ground have all played their part in the formation of this depression. Sedimentary rocks such as sandstone and limestone are unconformably overlain by basalt which resulted from extensive lava flows.

Harar Wildlife Sanctuary

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The Harar Wildlife Sanctuary (also known as the Babille Elephant Sanctuary) is a protected area in Ethiopia. It is located in the Misraq (East) Hararghe Zone of the Oromia Region, south of Babille, with a central latitude and longitude of 8°45′N 42°38′E.

Harar Wildlife Sanctuary was created for the protection of the native African elephant subspecies (Loxodonta africana oleansie). Conditions at this sanctuary are primitive, and it is not equipped for tourists, although the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has announced plans to remedy this shortcoming.

Great Rift Valley

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The Great Rift Valley lies between the Ethiopian Plateau to the north and the Somalia Plateau to the south. The rift developed as the Nubian and Somali plates began to separate during the Miocene Period along the East African rift system. Rift initiation was asynchronous along the Ethiopian rift valley: deformation began around 18 million years ago at the south end, around 11 million years ago close to the Afar depression and probably around 6-8 million years ago in the central sector. The rift is extending in an ESE-WNW direction at about 5–7 millimetres (0.20–0.28 inches) annually.

The Ethiopian rift valley is about 80 kilometres (50 mi) wide and bordered on both margins by large, discontinuous normal faults that give rise to major tectonic escarpments separating the rift floor from the surrounding plateaus. These faults are now thought to be inactive at the northern rift valley termination, whereas to the south they are still tectonically and seismically active.[4][5] The rift floor is cut by a series of smaller en echelon, right-stepping, rift basins of Quaternary to recent age. These basins are about 20 kilometres (12 mi) wide and 60 kilometres (37 mi) long. In the northern part of the rift, extension within the valley is now thought to be mainly along these faulted and magmatically active segments. These segments are considered to be developing mid ocean ridge spreading centers.