Ethiopia is an outstanding country with distinctive Christian traditions. Many tourists are attracted to its sites, unique culture and nature. Some things to see and experience is possible only in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia is of the oldest countries in the world and its history goes back to the times of the King Solomon (Shinn 229). Traces of the first man is found here. Ethiopia is the only African country that had always been independent (Gish 17), thus it had a chance to develop its own traditions such as language, writing, architecture.
There are many outstanding historical sites that a traveler should not miss when in Ethiopia. The ancient history goes back to prehistoric times and first fossils and traces of the first people were found here (Shinn 45).
One of the sites I would visit is Aksum. This is the city that used to be the heart of the Axum Empire, a great marine and trading ancient country(Gish 19 ). It had its own language and unique architecture. Gigantic obelisks and steles, churches, monasteries – they are too many to describe in a short report. There are claims that the Arc of the Covenant was placed (Hay 76) in the church of St. Mary of Zion. Also, legends about Queen of Sheba are linked with Aksum and it is believed that she lived in the city. The ruins of the royal residence are still seen as well as the historical site called Queen of Sheba’s Bath.
Another place I would not miss is Lalibela. This is the town where monolithic rock-hewn churches are found. There are total of 11 closely located churches. The biggest of them is Medhane Alem is 11.5 meters tall. Churches carved out of a single rock. The other known church is the Maryam church. It is carved in a solid rock in such a way that massive roof is at the land level and the church goes down into the rock. To enter it the visitor has to go through the tunnel. It contains paintings of Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt with baby Jesus, as well as the painting of the Star of David. (Shinn 252)
There are many more places to visit like Gandar and Harar.
Other sites I would go to see would be national resorts such as Simien National Park, the Great Rift Valley, Blue Nile Falls, Lake Tana and many more.
I will not write much about Ethiopian wild life and nature. I just want to highlight the bird diversity in this countries. There are literally hundreds species of birds, some are unique and endemic, that are only found in Ethiopia. The lake Turkana is a paradise for bird watching (Shinn 251).
Options of exploring in Ethiopia are numerous. I would look forward to experiencing this fascinating, stunning and full of contrasts and extremes exotic country with breathtaking landscapes and beautiful people.