Arba Minch is a growing resort town in Southern Ethiopia, situated by two large lakes that are separated by a land bridge. The lakes are at different altitudes.
There are many daily village buses from nearby towns, including Awasa.
Arba Minch is divided into two districts, Sikela and Secha, that are separated by a couple of miles. Frequent minibuses connect the two.
- The main attraction is the national park containing the two lakes. You can try to go for yourself. Go inside at the Main entrance (100 Birr fee) per foot, bike or motorbike or even car. Forty Springs is located on the road 3km inside from the entrance and can be reached by foot. The springs itself are unspectacular. You can also organise the boat safari (1200 Birr) with the local guide association or by yourself upon arrival in the park. They will take you over Lake Chamo where you can see crocodiles (at a place called crocodile market) and various birds (2018). On the lake Abayo you reach the shore and a ferry station right behind the crocodile farm and you will walk around with a ranger and you could watch Monkeys, Hornbill, Zebra, Dikdik and other Antelope. 500 Birr per Person in total (Sep 2016) or just a tip for the ferry captain who shows you the way. Should be interesting finding out, where the locals go by these little ferry boats...
- Visit the Dorze Villages in the hills to the east. There are many smaller villages around Chencha. There are public busses leaving every hour from and to Arba Minch for 40 Birr and taking 2 hours. You could go on your own, take a guide in Chencha or take a guide from Arba Minch to visit the Dorze. 250 Birr for the Guide (Sep 2016). There are many lodging options available in the Dorze villages.
If you go as far as Dorze Lodge, it's 25 Birr for the bus (or about 400, if you want to give a little Tuctuc a really hard time on the stony and steep road). From the road it's about 15 minutes by foot to the lodge. From the Lodge you can walk easily to the first village in 20 minutes, no guide needed (Dec. 2018).
The Dorze sell handwoven colorful simple carpets.
- 1 Ezana Hotel. The courtyard of this pink hotel is a cheap place to eat, but the highlight is fast WiFi. French toast, eggs, and omelettes are available for breakfast. Traditional Ethiopian food, fish, and pasta for lunch and dinner.
- 2 Rozza Hotel Pizza Restaurant. Run by a European, this is probably the only pizza place in Shecha. Pizzas are cooked in a wood fire oven. 80-100 Birr for a pizza as of June 2014.
- Wubete Hotel (At the first roundabout in uphill Shecha). Luxurious and new restaurant, but excellent and decently priced. Apparently a dating place for locals. 30-80 Birr, e.g. Pasta 40 Birr. (Sep 2016)
- Rift Valley Pension (Down "Hotel Street" on the second roundabout in uphill Shecha, next to Ezana Hotel). Best value in Arba Minch. Clean, spacious rooms and the ladies at the bar will cook you a simple local meal. Coffee 3 Birr. The tour drivers from the guests at the luxurious lodges sleep here. Single 200 Birr (Sep 2016).