LALIBELA VISITS MADE EASY – COURTESY OF ETHIOPIAN HOLIDAYS
(Posted 23rd August 2019)
Ethiopian Airlines’ holiday division, ET-Holidays, is now in a position to offer visitors to Ethiopia, but also transit passengers wishing to spend a few days in the country, two day tours to Lalibela, flights, accommodation, meals, transport and guiding services included.
The launch of such tours – also available to a number of other locations across Ethiopia and ATCNews will be introducing nine more high profile domestic destinations in coming week – is in line with promoting the country as a tourism destination in its own right, progressively moving away from the understanding that Addis Ababa is a mere transit point for passengers traveling to the more than 50 destinations served by the airline across the continent.
Recent changes at the Ethiopian Tourism Organization, in short ETO, were made to inject a new sense of urgency to drive tourism promotion to new levels and the appointment of Ethiopian Airlines’ Group CEO Ato Tewolde GebreMarian to the board of directors of ETO shows just how serious the Ethiopian government is to tap into the new revenue streams increased tourism arrivals offer.
Lalibela is not just a hot spot for Ethiopia but for the continent of Africa per se and pilgrims from around the world, in ever increasing numbers, flock to the rock hewn churches to worship at one of the earliest places of christianity in Africa.
The one night / two days tour starts in Addis Ababa at the airport, where travelers who booked the tour will board their domestic early morning flight to Lalibela, where an English speaking staff of ET-Holidays will meet the group or individual travelers. Guides capable of speaking other languages like French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese or German will cost an extra 240 US Dollars.
Lalibela’s churches, all hewn into solid bedrock, date back to the 11th century AD and are, like the pyramids in Egypt or the ruins of Great Zimbabwe testament to the cultural and historical development seen across Africa when Europe had not nearly reached similar development standards. Lalibela, needless to mention, is one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites in Ethiopia.
Tourists can during their visit explore as many of the churches as they can pack into daylight hours before being taken to their hotel for dinner and overnight.
The next morning will Ethiopian Airlines fly them from Lalibela back to Addis Ababe where tour participants either continue with other programmes or are able to check in for their onward journey.
Charges for the two day / one night trip start from 499 US Dollars per person for one traveler but reduce to only 274 US Dollars per person for groups of 15 and above, net and non commissionable and payable to ET-Holidays. A single room supplement of 25 US Dollars is applicable.
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