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Two young girls painting their faces

Omo Valley Snapshot

Example 6 Day Tour
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Spend six days exploring arguably the most isolated and culturally rich regions in all of Africa. The Omo Valley in southwestern Ethiopia is home to a variety of diverse ethnic groups and tribes, many of whom still cling to their unique customs and live in relative isolation with the outside world. This short six-day Ethiopia tour offers a quick glimpse into their daily life. Visit villages of the Konso, Chencha, Tsemai, and Mursi people. Spend time wandering the stalls of the colorful Key Afar market where you can observe the Ari and Benna people buying and selling. This 6-day Omo Valley tour is for the traveler who is short on time, but wants to include a glimpse into the fascinating cultures on their Ethiopia trip.
A woman from the Erbore tribeOmo Valley landscapeA Hamer tribe womanSouvenirs from the Hamer people in Omo ValleyA woman grinding sorghum from the Karo tribeMursi tribe women wear lip platesTwo young girls painting their faces
Highlights
  • Visit Konso, Chencha, and Tsemai villages in the Omo Valley
  • Wander the Key Afar market and observe the Ari and Benna people at work
  • Travel to Mago National Park and visit the Mursi people
Activities
Places Visited
Activity Level: Relaxed
Involves minimal physical effort and is typically associated with leisurely activities. Activities are low-intensity or last less than a few hours each day.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Arrive Addis Ababa

Arrive to Bole airport where you are met and transferred to your hotel for the evening. Settle in and rest up after your long journey.

Day 2: Fly Addis | Arbaminch, drive to Chencha (48 km & 2 hrs.)

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After a restful night in Addis, check out of the hotel and take a flight to Arba Minch, the largest town in southern Ethiopia, nestled among lush green hills near Lakes Abaya and Chamo. Arba Minch is named for the numerous local springs that produce a groundwater forest. Arbaminch, which means "forty springs" in Amharic, is divided into two separate communities. Shecha (on higher ground) and downtown Sikela are connected by buses and taxis. Shecha is the administrative center of uptown. Sikela, which has the city's business, industrial, and residential districts, is only 2.5 miles away. The entrance to Nechisar National Park, which covers the isthmus between Lake Abaya to the north and Lake Chamo to the south, is located on the eastern side of Sikela. 
Upon arrival, drive to Chencha Village, which is home to the Dorze people. Renowned for their cotton weaving, the Shammas are known for their distinctive house-towering, beehive-shaped structures made from woven thatch.

Day 3: Boat ride on Lake Chamo | Drive to Konso (90 km & 2 hrs.)

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy a one-hour boat ride on the lake to Azo Gebeya this morning, the so-called "crocodile market," which is more of a gathering area for pelicans and crocodiles than a market. The boat trip's main attraction includes viewing hippos and crocodiles up close.
Later, drive to Konso. The Konso region has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979 for its vibrant culture. Low-terraced hills are the home of the Konso tribe. They are reputed to be one of the hard-working groups in the country. They grow some of the greatest coffee in the nation on a mountain with intricate terraces. They have a well-established custom of placing unusual totems on the graves of the departed.

Day 4: Drive to Jinka, en route visiting different Tribes

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today you drive to Jinka and visit different tribes en route.

Day 5: Mursi Tribe and Jinka Museum

  • Hotel
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning, you take a day excursion to Mago National Park to visit the Mursi village. They are one of the most original ethnic groups. They live in very low huts made of straw leaves. The women like to wear terra cotta on their enormously stretched lower lips and earlobes, while the men are famous for their hairstyles. The tribe is renowned for its fierce warrior disposition and wildly decorative appearance, with large circular clay labrets that the women wear on the lower lip. The value of a woman in marriage increases with her lip plate size. She takes her dish off to eat and to sleep. Some ladies, particularly older women, might be without their lip plates. They can be identified by the way their long, distended lips hang down from their mouths.

Day 6: Fly back to Addis and Departure

  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You are transferred to the airport for your flight back to Addis. After refreshments at your hotel, you are transferred to the airport for your flight home or to your next destination.

Accommodations

Paradise Lodge

Paradise Lodge
Paradise Lodge

Eco-Omo Safari Lodge

Eco-Omo Safari Lodge
Eco-Omo Safari Lodge
Eco-Omo Safari Lodge

Kanta Lodge

Interior of a round tukul at Kanta Lodge
Exterior patio and garden area
Restaurant and dining area

The Grand Palace

The Grand Palace Lobby
The Grand Palace Standard Room
The Grand Palace Gym

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$3,847

Notes

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Rates based on group of 2.
Included
  • 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 6 Dinners
  • 5 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Photography Fees
  • Hotel accommodation on a double/twin room occupancy on bed and breakfast basis
  • All private airport transfer and ground transportation as per the program
  • Drinking water throughout the trip
  • An English speaking professional escort guide
  • Local guide
  • Porter fee
  • All entrances and 15% tax fee
  • Boat Cruise on Lake Chamo
  • Day use room
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Airport transfer in Addis Ababa
  • Internal Flights Addis Ababa - Arba Minch - Addis Ababa
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Early check-in

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Chance for unpredictable weather but with fewer visitors.

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The trip might have been the absolute best of our lifetime (thus far). We particularly want to commend our guide Peter in the Guilin area-he was so incredibly attentive, energetic, enthusiastic-and absolutely dedicated to ensuring that our meals were 100% vegetarian.
Jack Charney
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