From Wikivoyage
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Formatting and language conventions

For articles about Ethiopia, please use the 24-hour clock to show times, e.g. 09:00-12:00 and 18:00-00:00.

Please show prices in this format: 100 birr, and not 100 Br, 100 ብር, or ETB100.

Please use American spelling.


I'm pretty sure there's more Christians (atleast overall) than Muslims, i dont know where you got your info, maybe there's alot of conflicting reports, look it up.

I looked up and there is still unknown for sure the exact number because of the dynamics of an increasing number of new converts of all faiths. —The preceding comment was added by (WT-en) (talkcontribs)
Usually the figures are based on the CIA Factbook, which I would imagine is a pretty good source... but if you've got a better one... – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 22:20, 26 March 2007 (EDT)


Hmmmm... I found Meleke but there's also Mekele. Are the two the same place and one just mispelt? Please comment below if they are! -- (WT-en) Tim (writeme!) 09:24, 6 May 2007 (EDT)

I can't say with absolute certainty, but I think this is just a misspelling—Mekele is near the Afar Desert and I know of no Meleke. --(WT-en) Peterfitzgerald Talk 04:35, 7 May 2007 (EDT)
Good catch, Tim. It's my mistake. I started the Meleke article, but my intention was Mekele. I'll do a redirect in case others also transpose the 'k' and 'l'. (WT-en) WindHorse 07:36, 7 May 2007 (EDT)

Mail section[edit]

Is the "Mail" section accurate? I have no recent first-hand experience sending mail to, or receiving mail in, Ethiopia. But unless the postal system has made vast improvements very recently, this section does not seem very accurate. Personal experience indicates that anything thicker or heavier than a letter is assumed to be something of value, and will be opened, and then kept or discarded. I would assume that something sent via USPS Express Mail might fare better. I can vouch that FedEx is reliable, but it is expensive and can take 5 days or more to send from the USA to Ethiopia. -- (WT-en) Gyrofrog (talk) 16:29, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

Taxation and duties on imports?[edit]

Any info on that?-- 22:58, 22 June 2007 (EDT)

and buying a car in Ethiopia-- 22:58, 22 June 2007 (EDT)

Thank you, Government of Ethiopia[edit]

I just wanted to voice my profound gratitude to the government of Ethiopia in following Wikivoyage regions policy to a tee: creating exactly nine regions, based on travel-relevant ethnic divisions. Very helpful! --(WT-en) Peter Talk 21:39, 21 September 2008 (EDT)

Fact checks[edit]

This very recent edit added "The unemployment rate was 5% in 2005." The link is to the 2013 Index of Economic Freedom, and I cannot find any mention there of the unemployment rate in 2005 or any other time. Could we have an indication of where on that page the 2005 unemployment rate is, please.

In the same edit, "In 2012 an Afari group attacked tourists in the Danakil Depression, killing five European tourists, and kidnapping two others" was changed to "In 2011 an Afari group attacked tourists in the Danakil Depression, killing five European tourists, and kidnapping two others". I believe that the attack took place on 16 Jan 2012. If I am wrong, when in 2011 did it take place? Thanks. Nurg (talk) 08:28, 9 November 2013 (UTC)[]

I think it was me that buggered things up, Nurg.
As far as I can tell, I must have edited Revision as of 22:56, 8 November 2013 by Nurg and for some weird reason there was no edit conflict message or I did not notice the "you are editing an old version message at the top of the page. As you can appreciate this was quite a long copyedit of mine. Sorry and please just restore your excellent edits if you can find the time - otherwise I'll do that later myself.-- 09:21, 9 November 2013 (UTC)[]

Conflicting "standard headings"[edit]

I hope that eventually we will have a working table of contents, since it is a very useful tool for travellers.

Anchor text is not just important for search engine optimisation purposes.

We also need unambiguous titles (ie unique headings) so that we can internally link.

Therefore, as a general rule, there should not be sub-section headings with the same title.

If we have Ethiopia#By_train in our "Get in" section we should not also have Ethiopia#By_train in our "Get around" section. That's why I changed it to Ethiopia#By_rail. --118.93nzp (talk) 07:23, 27 November 2013 (UTC)[]

Thanks for raising this on the Talk page. What you are suggesting would require a change to the Wikivoyage:Article templates/Sections#Get around guidelines, or at least my reading of them. I suggest you raise the matter on the Talk page for that policy. Your idea would affect a large number of pages. In the meantime we ought to follow the existing guideline until such time as the policy might change. I hope you don't mind if we wait for any discussion to conclude first. Cheers. Nurg (talk) 08:20, 27 November 2013 (UTC)[]
Of course not, Nurg.
However, since many old and seasoned editors regard me as part of the gang of four (or is it three or two or six - I really can't keep track of all the accusations flying around), if you think the idea has merit (it also means you can click on edit short links without the wrong heading opening), I'd be grateful if you would raise it there yourself... --118.93nzp (talk) 08:28, 27 November 2013 (UTC)[]
Ok, duly raised there. Nurg (talk) 09:26, 27 November 2013 (UTC)[]

I assume to no avail, since to change the hallowed headings would risk differentiating ourselves from Wikitravel and might even risk getting rid of the Google duplicate penalty that saps our readership?

Alternative banner for this article?[edit]

Banner currently used in this article
Suggested new alternative banner

Do you think too that this banner would would better than the existing one? ויקיג'אנקי (talk) 21:53, 4 November 2014 (UTC)[]

Maybe marginally? I'm not sure. Why do you think it's clearly better, as a banner for the article for the country? Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:11, 6 November 2014 (UTC)[]
It's ok, but the existing one may be marginally better. Nurg (talk) 09:56, 6 November 2014 (UTC)[]

New regions?[edit]

So, I've recently returned from Ethiopia and reached the conclusion our regions for it, although following federative and linguistic borders, are kinda pointless from a traveller's POV. They group together areas that can't easily be reached from each other (understatement) and are completely different (for example, the southeastern and western portions of Oromia, or southern and northern Afar); separate areas that are usually travelled together (like the rift valley); and give spotlight to areas that are insanely off the travel radar for all but the hardiest of travellers (again, understatement in the case of Benishangul-Gumaz). So before I take a shot at creating a new map, I figured I'll ask for opinions regarding this new list of regions:

  • Central Ethiopia - This will be the area around Addis Ababa and anything that can be an easy day-trip from there (east to Nazareth/Adama, south to Butajira, that sort of radius).
  • Northern Ethiopian Highlands - basically Amhara and Tigray. By far the most travelled area of Ethiopia out of Addis, and usually done in a loop in a very specific order. The country's historic heartland. Different landscape and tourist attractions than the rest of the country.
  • Danakil Depression - The northern half of Afar, usually reached as an organized side-trip from Mekele in Tigray. Very popular and we already have a page about it.
  • Ethiopian Rift Valley - the series of lakes from Ziway down to Arba Minch, plus the road south to Kenya (currently split in a criss-cross of borders between Oromia and southern Ethiopia). Again, very different landscape and tourist attractions than the rest of the country.
  • Omo Valley - one of the most popular attractions in the country (sadly), and kinda complicated and requires a lot of preparation. It's part of what we currently have under southern Ethiopia.
  • Bale Mountains - more than just the national park, it's a whole area with some other parks and towns. Currently a part of Oromia.
  • Eastern Ethiopia - Somali, westernmost Oromia (inc. Harar and Dire Dawa) and the south of Afar. Could be split into Haraghe and Ogaden, I suppose, but then the Ogaden page will be way off the beaten path and kinda empty.
  • Western Ethiopia - the least travelled of the regions I listed. Basically, western Oromia, Gambela and Benishangul-Gumaz.

Thoughts? --Buzzy (talk) 16:52, 10 May 2015 (UTC)[]

Hi Buzzy. Reorganisation may be a good idea, but I'm not sure about all the detail of what you've suggested. We have 26 bottom-level articles at present (including a new one you have just added). Could you list them (and any other new ones that you plan to definitely add) under each region that you have suggested. Then we will have a better of idea of how many bottom-level articles would be in each region. My first impression is that the regions would still be out of proportion to each other (as they are now) if, for example, we had a whole region for Danakil, but had Amhara and Tigray merged into one. But the idea of some sort of reorg has merit, so let's discuss further. Nurg (talk) 11:03, 14 May 2015 (UTC)[]

Principle and main criticism is accurate but, as usual, the devil will be in the detail...

Alright, I see your point, Nurg. The low number of articles is because, frankly, our Ethiopia section is currently very lacking. So let's break this down, as you suggested:
New Region Current articles Possible new articles and notes
Central Ethiopia Addis Ababa, Adama, Sodere, Tiya Debre Zeyit, Butajira
Northern Ethiopian Highlands Lalibela, Bahir Dar, Gondar, Simien National Park, Axum, Adwa, Mekele, Hawzien Wukro, Dessie, Abi Addi, Shire.
I suppose we could keep this split into Amhara and Tigray, if this is too much - but these regions are usually done together.
Danakil Depression None The thing is, we currently treat Danakil as a single destination, but it really isn't. It's a lot more complicated than that... Otherwise, this should be merged into Tigray as "Tigray and the Danakil", as it's accessed from there and not from the rest of Afar
Ethiopian Rift Valley Ziway, Abijatta Shalla Lakes National Park, Awasa, Wondo Genet, Arba Minch, Yabelo, Moyale Shashemene, Chencha, Dila, Irgalem, Sodo, Langano
Omo Valley Omo National Park, Mago National Park, Konso Jinka, Turmi.
Konso isn't technically in the Valley, because it's on a highland, but it's the gateway to the valley and most tours there do it together.
Bale Mountains None Bale Mountains National Park, Dodola, Dinsho, Robe, Goba, Sof Omar
Eastern Ethiopia Dire Dawa, Harar, Awash National Park, Kersa Jijiga, Awash
Western Ethiopia None, even though there are two whole region pages Assosa, Gambela, Bonga, Mizan Teferi, Jimma, Ambo

Thoughts? --Buzzy (talk) 12:29, 14 May 2015 (UTC)[]

Thanks Buzzy. I've added Adwa to your table. I think maybe we should go for fewer, but bigger, regions until such time as we have plenty more articles. So here's a suggestion:
  • Central Ethiopia - as you suggest
  • Northern Ethiopia - Amhara, Tigray & Danakil
  • Southern Ethiopia - Rift Valley & Bale Mountains
  • Eastern Ethiopia - as you suggest
  • Western Ethiopia - including what you have for Omo Valley
This would avoid having any regions that currently have no lower-level articles. And the existing region articles are mostly bare bones, so we are better off having fewer such bare bones articles. Thoughts? Nurg (talk) 10:03, 15 May 2015 (UTC)[]
Could work, Nurg. Main issue is that Omo doesn't make much sense in the west, because the access to it is from the south. The reason we don't currently have any articles about the west is because it's really off-the-beaten-path. Also, the Omo Valley is really a very touristy yet complicated "tribal" area that I do think deserves its own page. How about if we do it in reverse order: first we'll push to have more articles (quantity is the easy part, of course; quality, a bit harder), and then once we'll have most of the pages I suggested, we'll rearrange the regions? I'll try to work on that a bit this week. --Buzzy (talk) 15:38, 15 May 2015 (UTC)[]
Good idea to create more articles first. Of course, they need to at least include some info on what to See or Do. No point in creating articles with no substantial content, just for the sake of filling out a list in a region article. Nurg (talk) 21:01, 15 May 2015 (UTC)[]
Of course, Nurg, I will expand on the pages I already created - creating them was just step one... Anyway, about the regions, I think in the meantime the best solution would be to create the regions as you suggested - but with the Omo Valley in the south and not the west. Yes, that would leave the west empty, but it's more accurate and helpful to travellers, plus it's still much better than what we currently have --Buzzy (talk) 10:06, 22 May 2015 (UTC)[]
That would give:
I guess that could work. Let's see if anyone else contributes to the discussion. Nurg (talk) 09:48, 23 May 2015 (UTC)[]
Wikivoyage Ethiopia RegionsMap.png

So, I created the map we discussed, Nurg. What does everyone think? --Buzzy (talk) 19:47, 16 September 2015 (UTC)[]


While there is no shortage of media coverage on the newly opened line and several indications that passenger services have either already started or will start in the next few months, I could not find a website dedicated to the passenger side of rail transport in Ethiopia. If you can find such a side, please add it to the appropriate section and (rough) prices if applicable. What I did find was this, but you can see for yourself why this website is not helpful for the voyager, at least in its current state Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:37, 12 January 2017 (UTC)[]

Some edits[edit]

  • Finished up adding coordinates for markers on region pages - adjusted a map or two
  • Add related sites for Churches of Ethiopia, UNESCO and African National Parks
  • THe following below is a quick grab of all the markers for Ethiopia & regions (at this moment in time) which may help identify areas/articles that may need attention. This can all be removed if found not to be useful:
Map of Ethiopia

  • 1 Abi Addi
  • 2 Adama (also known as Nazret or Nazareth) — popular weekend destination near Addis
  • 3 Adama, also known as Nazret – an important commercial town east of Addis Ababa
  • 4 Addis Ababa (Finfinne) — capital of Ethiopia and one of the biggest shopping cities in Africa
  • 5 Addis Ababa – the capital city of Ethiopia and of Oromia
  • 6 Adwa and nearby Yeha with its ancient temple
  • 7 Arba Minch
  • 8 Assosa - capital of Benishangul-Gumuz, near the western Ethiopian escarpment
  • 9 Awasa – the capital
  • 10 Axum (Aksum) — home of ancient tombs and stelae fields, in the far north
  • 11 Axum (also spelt Aksum) – capital of the former Kingdom of Axum, famous for its stelae and cathedrals
  • 12 Bahir Dar — monasteries on the islands of Lake Tana and the beautiful Blue Nile Falls nearby
  • 13 Bahir Dar – on Lake Tana with its island monasteries and churches, where the Blue Nile flows out
  • 14 Bonga
  • 15 Chencha
  • 16 Debre Zeyit, also known as Bishoftu – a resort town between Addis Ababa and Adama
  • 17 Dessie
  • 18 Dila
  • 19 Dire Dawa — the second largest city; in the east
  • 20 Dire Dawa
  • 21 Gondar — some of East Africa's only castles
  • 22 Gondar – royal castles
  • 23 Hager Selam
  • 24 Harar — ancient walled city near Dire Dawa
  • 25 Hawzien – a base for exploring the many rock-hewn churches of north-eastern Tigray
  • 26 Irgalem
  • 27 Jimma – hub in Southwestern Ethiopia
  • 28 Kersa
  • 29 Konso – a small town with ancient sculptures and fossil beds, declared a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • 30 Lalibela — home to 11 astonishing rock-hewn churches
  • 31 Lalibela – rock-cut churches
  • 32 Mekele — a town in the Tigrayan Highlands in the north
  • 33 Mekele – capital of Tigray, home to the palace of Emperor Yohannes IV
  • 34 Mizan Teferi
  • 35 Moyale – a small town in the south on the Kenyan border
  • 36 Shire - also known as Inda Selassie
  • 37 Sodere – a spa town south of Adama
  • 38 Sodo
  • 39 Tiya – World Heritage Site for its mysterious Stonehenge-like structure
  • 40 Waka
  • 41 Wondo Genet
  • 42 Worabe
  • 43 Wukro - another base for exploring the rock-hewn churches of Tigray
  • 44 Yabelo – a small town in the south
  • 45 Ziway – a small city on the shores of a large lake
  • 1 Abijatta Shalla Lakes National Park
  • 2 Awash National Park
  • 3 Bale Mountains National Park
  • 4 Danakil Depression - a very hot desert region featuring volcanoes and salt plains and lakes below sea level
  • 5 Mago National Park
  • 6 Omo National Park
  • 7 Simien National Park
  • Sheraton Addis and may be of interest as a relic of the Ethio-Djibouti Railway that began service in 1890 during the reign of Emperor Menelik II. The new line does not serve the historic station.
  • 1 Rock-hewn churches of Gheralta mountains (near Hawzien) — tens of churches you can hike to
  • 2 Abijatta Shalla Lakes National Park
  • 3 Awash National Park
  • 4 Danakil Depression — a salt desert with several volcanoes including the active Erta Ale and the colorful Dallol
  • 5 Konso and other Omo Valley tribes
  • 6 Mago National Park
  • 7 Omo National Park
  • 8 Simien National Park
  • 9 Sodere — spa town due to hot springs (filwoha) -- Matroc (talk) 05:29, 5 October 2018 (UTC)[]

Revisiting the regions[edit]

New proposal

The previous discussion above is now old and had very little participation, so I am bringing this up again. We currently use the country's administrative borders for regions, even though they make zero sense from a traveller's point of view. I will detail some of the problems this creates:

  1. The Oromia and Afar pages are completely unhelpful as travel regions. It is near impossible to get from southern Afar to northern Afar, for example. Travellers visit southern Afar on their way east to Harar, since the road there cuts though southern Afar. They only visit northern Afar, however, as a side-trip from Tigray, across the country. Similarly, Oromia is an even bigger mess that lumps together areas that cannot be visited together.
  2. Several areas that are of very little interest to the traveller and have travel warnings get an entire page, even though they're not likely to fill up. This includes Benishangul-Gumaz, Gambela, and to a lesser extent Somali.
  3. Trips that are usually done together by travellers are now split into several different region pages. This includes parts of Oromia and Southern Ethiopia, or other parts of Oromia, southern Afar, and Somali, or northern Afar and Tigray.

I propose we follow the example of most travel guides, put the traveller first, and change the system to 5 (possibly more) directional regions:

New Region What will it include
Central Ethiopia Addis Ababa and surrounding parts of Oromia (and possibly the southern tip of Amhara, corresponding to the traditional region of Shewa. Basically, all the 2nd-level administrative zones of Ethiopia whose name contains the word "Shewa"
Northern Ethiopia Amhara (except maybe the small southernmost tip), Tigray, and northern Afar. I suppose we could keep this split into Amhara and Tigray, if this is too much - but these regions are usually done together.
Southern Ethiopia the current Southern Ethiopia, plus the southern parts of Oromia (the administrative zones of Arsi, West Arsi, Bale, Guji, and Borena). This could possibly be broken up further, but not by administrative lines, which help no traveller.
Eastern Ethiopia Somali and western Oromia (the administrative zones of West and East Hararghe, plus the cities of Harar and Dire Dawa which we currently incorrectly list as part of Oromia)
Western Ethiopia Benishangul-Gumaz, Gambela and the western parts of Oromia

What does everyone think? Can we reach a concensus? --Buzzy (talk) 22:41, 26 January 2019 (UTC)[]

I'd say there are good changes over all. If I were to nitpick, I'd say I'm mildly inclined to keep the Somali region as-is, but not enough to push the issue. I'm also slightly concerned about having an empty western region: the regions should be based more on density of destinations than on geography, so maybe that one could be split and combined with neighboring regions. But, I'm willing to concede to your firsthand experience and, if no one brings up any other proposals, I'd support any improvement over the status quo. Further, incremental improvements can be done later. ARR8 (talk | contribs) 00:05, 27 January 2019 (UTC)[]
Somali on its own would suffer from the same problem that concerns you regarding the west - it would stay rather empty. It currently contains only one page (Dire Dawa), which is technically not even in Somali. As for the west - I agree with your concerns, but I believe there's more growth potential there. And it's definitely better than the current situation, which splits the west into 3. As you suggested, future incremental changes can definitely be made. --Buzzy (talk) 14:08, 27 January 2019 (UTC)[]
If you are proposing to do the work yourself, Buzzy, then I support the idea, deferring to your knowledge of the country. --ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 09:54, 28 January 2019 (UTC)[]
Thanks, ThunderingTyphoons!, I am. I can handle it myself. --Buzzy (talk) 11:32, 28 January 2019 (UTC)[]
Good to know!--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 12:01, 28 January 2019 (UTC)[]
@Buzzy: Thanks for starting that work on the regions!
This is not meant to come across as impatient, but I need to ask now while I remember: how soon are you going to redirect the old region articles and create the new ones? If it's in the next few hours, then great, but otherwise it would be better to leave the regionlist on this page as is until you're finished, so readers can still access all the content they could before.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 16:56, 31 January 2019 (UTC)[]
Done, actually. Will continue working on the rest of what needs to be done now. --Buzzy (talk) 17:01, 31 January 2019 (UTC)[]
Good job. And thank you.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 17:28, 31 January 2019 (UTC)[]

12-hour or 24-hour clock?[edit]

Which is more commonly used? Ground Zero (talk) 18:16, 3 December 2019 (UTC)[]

Not sure exactly what you're asking, but this might help, maybe. Nurg (talk) 09:06, 4 December 2019 (UTC)[]
What I was trying to find out is whether 17:00 is more common or 5PM. But that article is interesting, and I see that in this article, we say that Wikivoyage will use the 24-hour clock to avoid confusion between the Ethiopian 12-hour clock and the standard one. Ground Zero (talk) 11:32, 4 December 2019 (UTC)[]
@Ground Zero, Nurg: I found this and it seems that Ethiopia uses the 12 hour clock (and that type of 12 hour clock seems like what theoretically makes sense) But in saying that, I think if travellers would see the local 12 hour clock, then it should be in brackets (this can be solved with a template). SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 13:11, 28 August 2021 (UTC)[]
Thanks for your comments. I'm not sure if you are making a proposal to change anything or just commenting. Continuing to use the 24-hour clock in Ethiopia articles seems fine. I don't think it is necessary to include Ethiopian-style times. Nurg (talk) 04:33, 29 August 2021 (UTC)[]
I now see that you have started a more substantial discussion at Wikivoyage:Travellers' pub#Template for approval: ETHtime. Nurg (talk) 05:12, 29 August 2021 (UTC)[]
Yeah, because certainly travellers would be confused. SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 05:32, 29 August 2021 (UTC)[]


Is there a good reason to have an ugly dynamic map of part of the country on the page? It's not standard to have dynamic maps of countries. Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:43, 18 January 2020 (UTC)[]