If you bring up mental images of Ethiopia, I doubt the first thing to come up would be stunning mountain landscapes, abundant wildlife, and sub-zero temperatures... which is fair enough, as it's so far off the beaten path that I don't think many people even realize how much Ethiopia has to offer to adventurous travellers. In reality, Ethiopia is a very unique country with incredible diversity spanning its borders. I have to admit, when I first decided to start my trip to East Africa with a couple of weeks in Ethiopia, I had no idea what to see or do... I just wanted to see the place where humans evolved. But, as I surfed the web in search of inspo, I soon came across the Simien Mountains National Park, and knew a trek was the perfect way to start off what was to be my biggest adventure yet. I was 100% right.
Spending 4 days hiking through the mountains of Northern Ethiopia was beautiful, challenging, exciting and rewarding in so many ways. I really think it deserves to rank high on any avid traveling trekker's bucket list, so I wanted to share with you the details of my trip, including how to organize it + prepare, what to expect (both good and bad), and some more practical info... plus lots of photos, of course. Keep on reading to find out all about this (very huge) hidden gem.
What does your trip of a lifetime look like? Where would you go, and what would you do? For me, my dream trip was all about Africa... specifically, African wildlife. My whole life, I've been obsessed with animals of all kinds. I'd often imagined what it would be like to come across a wild lion, or to watch a gorilla feed her baby, but never really thought it was something I could experience for real. Even after I earned a university degree in primatology, and lived in Central America so I could study wild monkeys... even after I quit my 'normal' life and moved to Thailand to become a scuba diving instructor, spending my days underwater with sharks... even after I started to travel more and go on amazing adventures, Africa still seemed sort of mythical; a place of fantasy, rather than reality.
Then, one day, I decided to make my dream come true, and started planning my ultimate dream trip. I went mountain trekking in Ethiopia, and on a horseback safari in Kenya; in between, I spent an amazing week on an epic road trip, driving between Entebbe, Uganda, and Kigali, Rwanda. Along the way, I achieved some major goals; I trekked with chimpanzees in Kibale National Park, gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, and saw my first wild lion in Queen Elizabeth National Park. It was even better than I could have imagined, and I'd love to share with you the details of how I organized it, what went down, and the answers to some common questions. So, keep reading!
All Africa Asia Australia Canada Destinations Ethiopia Health + Fitness Hiking Horseback Trips Layovers Long-term Travel Middle East Montreal Morocco Packing Lists Philippines Planning Quebec Road Trips Rwanda Technology Thoughts + Opinions Tips + Tricks Uganda United Arab Emirates