The capital of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa sits pretty much in the centre of Ethiopia.
Addis Ababa (New Flower in English) was created as the capital by King Menelik II, the creator of modern Ethiopia, in 1886
North of Addis Ababa to the Eritrean border and to the Danakil Depression is termed the Historical North
It is the area which has most interaction with European culture and hence a region that is significantly Christian with cities that formed as their capitals.
It is also where we find Aksum the centre of the Kingdom of Aksum with a history reaching back to 4 BC
Ethiopian history extends from the Iron Age to Rastafarianism and beyond to much for this blog but worth a exploration.
The Stelae of Axum are monuments to past Kings of Aksum the largest and most impressive from the 3rd and 4th century AD.
Some of the simpler Stelae are older
A short drive from Aksum is Yeha
The Lion of Yeha providing an geological marker
The remains of the Temple of Yeha is Ethiopia’s oldest standing structure. Estimated to be built in 700 BC
In the nearby monastery there are relics from Pagan times reflecting times when The Ibex and the sun and moon were sacred
And beautifully illustrated Christian manuscripts
Lalibella is a medieval city famous for its rock hewn churches built around the 12th century by the then King Lalibella.
There are 11 rock hewn churches in Lalibella
The most famous of which is the Church of St George (below)
The churches are also noted for their rock star clergy
Aksum and Lallibella are considered the most holy sites in Ethiopia and both are UNESCO world heritage listed and as such are the highlights of the Historic North of Ethiopia
Gondar is the stepping off city to explore the Simien Mountains and has its own treasures – in churches
and in the Castle
Bahar Dar is rounds out the main stops in the Historic North
With the beautiful Lake Tana which is the source of the Blue Nile
These are reflections of years past travelling in my mind during the Covid -19 lockdown in Melbourne
Reflective travelling in my mind!