Northern route – Erta Ale and Dalol - 5 Days

Erta Ale and Dallol are among the most bizarre and fascinating places on the planet. Visiting the Danakil Depression and exploring the alien volcanic landscape of this remote corner of Ethiopia is a truly unique experience that will leave you in awe. Many decribe this adventure as akin to visiting another world…

Erta Ale is a continually active volcano located 790 km from Addis Ababa in the Danakil Depression – one of the hottest deserts on Earth. The summit caldera contains two “craters”. The northern crater has variable lava lakes and lava flows. The southern crater has a permanent lava lake that is 120 m in diameter. The surface of the lava lake is constantly bubbling and forming lava-fountains. The lava lake is usually at a level of 10-30 m below the edge of the crater (the point at which we view the lake).

Day 1
Addis Ababa to Mekele(Flight)- Erta Ale

After arrival, you will be transferred to your land cruiser car and go to Erta ale.Erta Ale volcano is a large basaltic shield volcano in the Erta Ale volcanic range in the central northern Danakil depression (NE Ethiopia). It is famed for its persistent lava lake which has been active during most of the past decades since it was first discovered in the 1960s. Erta Ale is 613 meters tall, with a lava lake, one of only five in the world, at the summit. It is notable for being the longest existing lava lake, present since the early years of the twentieth century. Tonight you will enjoy watching the volcano in near distance. Overnight camping around the volcano.

Day 2
Erta Ale- Afdera- Abala

Lake Afdera is the second largest lake with salt water in the Afar region. The beach along Lake Afdera (Giulietti Lake) is surrounded by foam of salt; transported and accumulated by the wind. You will have a short swim in the emerald colored lake which seems appropriate and feels like swimming in the Dead Sea. The depressing Afdera town is located along the shores of Lake Giulietti and bases its economy on the extraction of salt from the waters of the lake. After having an enjoyable time on the salty lake you will drive to Abala. Overnight Camping at Abala.

Day 3
Abala-Dalol

Excursion to Dallol (116 meter below sea level, one of the lowest places in the world) colorful salts mining, visit Lake Assale, follow up camel’s caravans and walk with the Afar and people from highland. The traditional way of extracting the Salt bar, which once used as local currency, packing on the Camel is done here. You will see how they prepare their traditional bread, how they travel, communicate & more. It is another unique experience. Overnight camping at Dalol

Day 4
Dalol to Mekele

Today, Drive to Mekele via the town of Berhale in the River bed Ascend all way to the Tigrian highland with the camel caravans and stop for photo over the depression. Overnight in Mekele (hotel)

Day 5
Fly back to Addis Ababa

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Trip Facts

  • Surface and flight

Tripadviser review

  •   We want to thank gashaw for the generosity and knowledge! We had a good time and felt safe throughout our visit. Also, the coffee was amazing! One of the best... read more

    rlacambra08
    1/11/2020
  •   We absolutely loved our impromptu trip with gayshaw s Walkinethiopiatours. We suddenly decided to go south for afew days . Our guide Moolie and our fabulous driver looked after... read more

    kezzb64
    12/26/2019
  •   If you're traveling solo and have limited time if Addis, I highly recommend this tour. You'll see so much and come away with a deep respect for the city and... read more

    Jamie M
    3/09/2020
  •   I was for two days in addis i have been enough to spend my trip with super guide gashaw friendly and knowledgeable .made my trip unforgettable from national museums to... read more

    Tinaconjo121
    12/06/2019
  •   We want to thank Yosef and the crew for the generosity and knowledge! We had a good time and felt safe throughout our visit. Also, the coffee was amazing! One... read more

    tune5678
    12/08/2019
  •   They charged me much more than what it says in TripAdvisor for a shorter tour, but both the guide and the driver were kind and safe, so that may be... read more

    Araceli G
    2/19/2020
  •   We spent two days with the company and they offered good customer experience. What stood out most was how they kept time and how clean their vans were. The guide... read more

    Trtr6
    11/24/2019
  •   After one day hanging out in Addis for a city stroll cum museums and a second day doing Entoto/Nile Gorge/Debre Livanos, this was a great third of three days in... read more

    mpiech00
    11/25/2019
  •   as an experienced travelers we do our research on tour operator in Ethiopia we finalized and we choose our selection for best tour company for service provider,with walk in Ethiopia... read more

    37addis
    12/02/2019
  •   A 15 Days family vacation trip to Ethiopia we see a lot to the history culture and the life of the people of Ethiopia we back in a two weeks... read more

    davidzH12MJ
    11/22/2019
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