Active Volcano of Erta Ale, in Afar

From Addis Ababa: 9-Day Erta Ale & Danakil Depression Tour

From $2,313 per person

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Key Details
9 days
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What You'll Do
  • Visit the Erta Ale active basaltic shield volcano, 1 of only 4 in the world with lava lakes
  • See the Danakil Depression, a desert basin situated 328 feet (100 meters) below sea level
  • Learn about the transportation of salt by caravans of camels
  • Experience the hostile nature of the land of the Afari people
Visit the land of the Afari people on a 9-day tour through Ethiopia. Travel to Erta Ale Volcano and Danakil Depression to see the cradle of mankind, the land of the caravan, the boiling of mother nature, and the flow of minerals on to the earth's surface.
What to Expect
Take a tour of Ethiopia on a 9-day journey through the land of the Afari people. See the sights and natural wonders of one of the areas known as the cradle of mankind, and learn about the way of the people from these areas.

On your trip, you will go to the Danakil Depression, a desert basin, and visit the Erta Ale volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Here you can marvel at the desolate nature of the landscape both in your daily excursions and your nights spent camping. In contrast, you will also spend time in Awash National Park where you may see a variety of wildlife, including more than 350 species of native birds.

You may have opportunities to interact with the locals as well, and your journeys to Dallol and Lake Afdera will show you how the Afari and Tigre people extract and export salt as a main industry of the area.

Detailed Itinerary
Day 1
(Meals: L, D)
Take the morning flight to Mekele where you will be met and driven down to the Danakil Depression. This is one of the lowest places on earth, at 328 feet (100 meters) below sea level. Arrive in Amedela and continue driving to Assale, where the Afar and Tigre people extract salt to transport it to the highlands with thousands of caravans of camels. Spend the night camping.

Days 2 & 3 (Meals: B, L, D)
Drive to Dallol, a settlement unoccupied except for its salt industry, and considered a ghost town. Geologically, the area is one of the very active areas of Ethiopia, with underground earth minerals that are pushed out due to high pressure and crystallized when coming in contact with atmospheric oxygen. The result is mineral hills of different shapes and colors, as well as shooting spring waters and geysers. Spend the night camping.

Days 4 & 5 (Meals: B, L, D)
Drive to Erta Ale via Kusruad, a volcano whose name means "smoking mountain." It takes 3.5 hours to trek up to the top of the mount where one can clearly observe the crater pit filled with a lake of lava. This is one of the only 4 volcanoes in the world a permanent lava lake. Spend the night camping.

Day 6 (Meals: B, L, D)
Visit Afdera, a salty water lake found in the town named after the lake. Here salt is extracted in a more systematic way. The water is pumped in to ponds where it is left to evaporate under the baking sun of Afdera. When the water has all evaporated, salt remains. Spend the night camping on the shore of the lake.

Day 7 (Meals: B, L, D)
Leave behind desert roads and hit the asphalt for a 162 mile (260 kilometer) journey to Logia where you will spend the night in a simple, local hotel.

Day 8 (Meals: B, L, D)
Travel the most important road of Ethiopia connecting Addis with the port of Djibouti. Arrive in Awash and spend the night at Awash Falls Lodge, located inside Awash National Park.

Day 9 (Meals: B)
Explore Awash National Park in the morning before driving back to Addis, where your journey ends.

All programs are re-written to include traditional market days, national holidays, special ceremonies, personal needs, distances, and other events based on your departure date and time.
What's Included
  • Full-board accommodation,
  • Land transportation by 4X4 WDS
  • Guide service
  • Entrance fees to all locations
What's Not Included
  • Travel insurance
  • Baggage insurance
  • Alcohol and other items of a personal nature
Meeting Point

Bole International Airport/ Addis Abeba

Know Before You Go
Bring along trekking boots, sun screen, walking stick, and hat

From $2,313 per person

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Bronze Age Tours & Travel

Product ID: 23724