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Ethiopia Tours

Ethiopia should be on the Top 10 list of any traveler. It boasts a fascinating mix of history, architecture, food, scenery, and culture, it's Africa's oldest independant country, and truly a jewel, as it is home to monolithic churches and some of humanity's oldest ancestors. The underground carved cathedrals of Lalibela, island monasteries of Lake Tana, royal castles ...Show More


On Your Ethiopia Tour

Passport Requirements for Ethiopia Tours

American and Canadian citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond the intended return date in order to enter and depart the country. Each traveler is responsible for ensuring that his/her passport is up to date. Citizens of other nationalities should check with respective authorities before departure. Please ensure that the name on your passport matches all travel documents we have issued. If this is not the case, please contact us immediately.

Your passport must have at least one blank page for the entry stamp. This cannot include the ‘endorsement’ page at the back.

Please make a photocopy of your passport’s identification page and keep it separate from your original. It’s also a good idea to leave a digital copy with someone at home. This may speed up the replacement process should you lose your passport.

Visa Requirements for Ethiopia Tours

Visas for Ethiopia are required by Canadian and US citizens - except transit passengers continuing to a third country within 12 hours - providing they do not leave the airport, and hold valid travel documents for onward destination. Some tourist visas for Canadian and US citizens can be issued on arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport. If applying for a tourist visa on arrival, visitors will require two passport photographs and US$50; application can take up to two hours. Visas are valid from the date of issue, not the date of entry into Ethiopia. The following visas are available: single entry visas for up to 30 days stay, multiple entry visas for three months and multiple entry visas for six months. Tourist visa costs: $50 (single-entry, one month); $34 (multiple-entry, three months); $36 (multiple-entry, six months).

Insurance Recommendations for Ethiopia Tours

Cancelation and Medical Insurance is highly recommended as it can safeguard against the expenses associated with in-country medical emergencies, lost or delayed baggage and emergency cancelation or interruption of your trip. Please ensure your policy will provide you with upfront medical coverage so that you are not responsible for a hefty doctor’s bill while away. Insurance can be purchased through us.

Vaccination Requirements for Ethiopia Tours

Some vaccines require more than one dose or a major length of time to be effective. For that reason, it is recommended to see your doctor or health provider at least 6 to 8 weeks before your trip. For all vaccinations and health requirements, you can also refer to the recommendations from:

World Health Organization (WHO): http://www.who.int and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) http://wwwnc.cdc.gov.

Currently Required Vaccinations: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travelers over one year of age arriving from areas considered to be at risk of transmission. It must be given at least 10 days before your trip in order to be effective. A yellow fever shot is NOT required for visitors from U.S. and Canada direct, however if you are travelling through surrounding African countries it is required.

Other vaccines to discuss with your doctor or travel health professional:

  • Tetanus & Typhoid recommended but not required for entry
  • Hepatitis B & E recommended but not required for entry
  • You may also want to discuss Typhoid, Diphtheria and Poliomyelitis (polio), Meningitis, Bilharzia (schistosomiasis) from swimming or paddling in fresh water, dengue fever from mosquitos and rabies depending on your time of visit and where you’ll be traveling
  • Malaria is present although not considered at serious risk however, malaria pills are an option to discuss with your doctor.

Remember that the best precaution is the preventative kind. Wearing long sleeves is a good idea. To reduce the risk of contracting yellow fever, dengue fever and malaria, liberally apply mosquito repellent that contains DEET to your skin and clothes, and wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers/slacks especially in the evenings.

Medication Requirements for Ethiopia Tours

If there are any medical items essential to your health, such as prescription drugs or corrective eye wear, bring duplicates and divide them between your checked bags and hand luggage. While non-prescription drugs such as aspirin are generally available, it is difficult to replace prescription items.

Other recommended Items:

  • Sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher), after-sun lotion, lip balm, sunglasses
  • Insect repellent with a high concentration of DEET (at least 30 percent)
  • Basic medicine kit (painkillers, band-aids, antiseptic cream, etc.)
  • Digestive aids such as Imodium, Pepto-Bismol. Also, re-hydration salts and anti-diarrhea preparations.
  • Hydrocortisone tablets or cream for allergic skin reactions and bites
  • Anti-nausea tablets if you suffer from motion sickness

Weather, Seasons and Climate in Ethiopia

The weather in Ethiopia is generally temperate with a brief rainy season in the summer and fall; however it can vary dramatically depending on elevation. Sunshine is almost all year-round, the best time to travel is November – February when days are long and warm and the nights are cool.

Clothing and Essential Items for Ethiopia Travel

It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early mornings. Light, quick-drying, practical clothes are advisable. Non-synthetic, comfortably fitting, cotton clothing breathes more easily and will keep you cooler under the hot African sun. Shorts and T-shirts are normally the order of the day, and are replaced with long-sleeved shirts and trousers at night for warmth and protection from insect bites.

Preferred colors on safari are khaki, beige, olive green and brown. You are less visible in the African bush and therefore less threatening to the animals. These colors also help to deflect harsh sun and are less likely to attract mosquitoes.

Other essential items:

  • Sweater, jersey pullover, safari jacket or windbreaker for the evenings
  • Swimwear

Bandannas, handkerchiefs and hat with a brim

FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS: Video camera, camera with zoom lens in a dust-resistant case, sufficient memory cards, a spare camera battery and charger, binoculars, bird and animal check lists

Electricity, Phone and Internet in Ethiopia

Electricity: Electricity in Ethiopia is 220 volts and 50HZ. Ethiopian sockets are designed to accept round prongs.

Phone: Your cell phone will work in most areas if your phone provider offers international roaming. Roaming phone charges vary, but tend to be quite costly. Consult your phone provider prior to departure to discuss their overseas rates and international package options.


Internet access is exceptionally slow and can be costly (as much as $5-10 per half hour) all across Ethiopia, and unfortunately has one of the lowest penetration rates in the entire continent of Africa “Smart” phones such as BlackBerrys and iPhones will actually download data much faster than computers. Again, roaming and data charges can be exceptionally high – so please talk to your phone provider to pre-purchase a data plan

Currency in Ethiopia

The currency in Ethiopia is the Ethiopian Birr, banknotes come in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 50 and 100 ETB. Coins come in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 santim. NOTE: $1.00 USD is equivalent to 20.00 ETB.

Quick Facts for a Ethiopia Tour

Capital: Addis Ababa

Language: The national language is Amharic

Currency: Ethiopian Birr

Religion: Orthodox Christian

Time Zone: GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) + 3 East Africa Time

Electricity: 220 Volt, 50 Hz

Telephone: Country code for calling is 251

Calling North America: Dial 011 plus area code and your 7-digit number

Emergency numbers in Ethiopia: For police, fire brigade or ambulance service, dial 939.

See What Our
See What Our
Sarah M., July 26, 2016
"We had such a tremendous trip! "
Julie C., July 15, 2016
"I cannot stress enough how perfectly everybody and everything came together to provide us with a world class vacation!"
Jeri E., April 24, 2016
"Top notch."
R.T F., October 16, 2015
"We had a magnificent time and gratefully thank you for your kind service."
Jodi D., August 20, 2015
"Thank you for the entire team in creating a wonderful and memorable adventure. "