Day 13 On the 'Highlands of Ethiopia' Trip

The highlands of Ethiopia offer stunning views of deep gorges and dramatic escarpments | Chris Buykx
The highlands of Ethiopia offer stunning views of deep gorges and dramatic escarpments | Chris Buykx

Trekking from Makarabia to Mulit camp

1800m, 16km, ascent 690 metres, descent 592 metres

I think some of my fellow travellers will remember this as the best trekking day of all on the Highlands of Ethiopia trip that I joined with World Expeditions. It is marked by great birdlife and landscapes, beautiful scenery, a most hospitable muslim-run café, and wet feet!

It seems that the beauty of today surprises a few people. As we are heading into the lowlands, the temperatures are quite high, so we look up the shade when we can.

We embark on a steep descent to the Ansiya Wenz River and then have five river crossings. Wet feet are unavoidable and we are asked to keep our boots on. Some of us try to do the first two crossings barefoot or in sandals, but then give up. They too strap on their walking boots again and luckily the sun doesn’t take long to dry our shoes at lunchtime. Some of the river crossings are a bit harder and I’m happy with the guides and muleteers around.

Ethiopian herders with their cattle - World Expeditions Ethiopia Walking Holiday

Sunset on a typical trekking day with World Expeditions in Ethiopia

After the fifth river crossing, we are back on the north side of the river and we leave her behind to climb around a bluff and then trek down to cross the Dri River.

As there is a slippery section on this narrow river we cross with care. When we hike back downstream on the other side, we discover a most beautiful deep bathing pool! It’s below a gorge section and is perfect with a powerful little waterfall at the back and a bit of shade around the sides. It is lovely swimming. Back on the trail we see ourselves trekking upstream again. It’s time for lunch which we enjoy in the shade by the river.

It’s been a good day!

Local encounters on a trekking holiday to Ethiopia with World Expeditions

Ethiopian coffee ceremony - Jebene Buna - World Expeditions

A steep sunny ascent follows to Hawaza (400m). Because today was a sunny Ethiopian afternoon and vegetation was reasonably open around the trekking trail, it was a pretty intense ascent for most of us. With some extra rest stops we reach Hawaza School.

And then, something magical! A café corralled in behind a bamboo fence with homemade log seating and shade. We sit drinking sodas, taking a rest from our trek, and eating corn on the cob when the owner comes out of the little café. She performs the long coffee roasting ceremony that is known for Ethiopia: Jebena Buna. Washing the coffee beans, roasting them, crushing them with pestle and mortar, and then boiling them on the fire. The Buna is excellent!

Reluctantly we leave her and her coffee shop behind for another 45 minutes or so of hiking a better undulating path to the homestead where we are camping tonight. The backdrop is made up of rock pinnacles and the views from just outside are amazing at sunset and sunrise.

Dinner party at the end of a trekking day in Ethiopia - World Expeditions

Sunset on a typical trekking day in Ethiopia with World Expeditions

In the evening we have a campfire party after a starlit dinner. There is a lot of singing and dancing and some local Ethiopians even come in to join. A cute little boy plays the one string Ethiopian violin, called the Masinqo.


If you got inspired by this story of an African walking holiday, find more information on this Highlands of Ethiopia trekking trip, or get in touch with one of our team members near you.


*This blog post on trekking in Ethiopia was written by John Millen who joined the trip in October.

Ethiopia, trekking, Africa

Comment (0)

Your comment will be visible after the administrator's approval.

b i u quote

Save Comment
Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/SHX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Sherpa Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Sherpa Expeditions</div>
Sherpa Expeditions is a specialist in self guided and guided walking and cycling holidays in the United Kingdom and Europe. Detailed route notes provide a definite guide to places in Europe for active walkers and cyclists.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Youth Adventures"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Youth Adventures</div>
World Youth Adventures is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.