South of Addis Ababa, running down from Ethiopia’s central plateau is the Rift Valley
Near the city of Arba Minch is Lake Chamo the last of 8 lakes in the Rift Valley running south from Addis Ababa.
From points in Abar Minch you can look over Lake Chamo and Lake Abaya
Abar Minch is a great stepping off point to explore the tribal south of Ethiopia and the Bale mountains.
But a boat ride on Lake Chamo is a must before heading south.
To see the Nile Crocodile nursery
To see the African Pelicans. These birds migrate up into the Danube Delta in Romania for the European summer (see Danube Delta blog under Romania in the menu).
See the fishermen casting for Nile Perch just around the corner from the crocodile nursery
Till the sun starts to set on the beautiful lake.
Awassa and its lake are approximately 290 km south of Addis Ababa and a well serviced tourist destination.
At a bit over 1,700 meters above sea level Awasa retains the mild temperatures that are a feature of Ethiopia’s Central Plateau.
The colourful fishing boats and fish market is an attraction of Lake Awasa
As is the wild life in particular the Marabou Stalk, particularly in and around the fish market (see above)
King Fishers large and small,
Colobus monkeys on the lake shoreline.
The area around Awasa is very productive
With abundant fresh fruits
And lots of coffee being grown dried and sorted in the region.
Because Ethiopia is the home of coffee.
The Awasa Valley is also where Lucy the skeletal remains of a 3.2 million year old hominin were found.
The reconstructed skeleton of Lucy is on display in the National Museum of Ethiopia in Addis Ababa.
Ethiopia is an amazing country. One of a handful of countries never to be colonised by a European power. (Though there has been significant European presence and influence).
Unfortunately political tensions have again arisen which hopefully be resolved.
I leave my lockdown reflections of Ethiopia now.
Next reflections in Africa will be in Kenya and the amazing wildlife there.
For those wanting to find out more about Ethiopia I recommend the above book amazing research text and images.