3 Days Addis Ababa, Gondar and Timket (Epiphany

This package focuses on the annual celebration of Timket (Epiphany)   at Gondar. It is celebrated on January 19th (or 20th in a leap year) the festival that is attended by tens of thousands of people from all over Ethiopia, making it one of the most joyous annual pilgrimages in Gondar, the “sacred city of the Ethiopians”.

 

Overview

In addition to the celebration of Timket (Epiphany) this cultural and historical adventure takes you through the rich historical & religious festivals of Ethiopia, which encompasses the historical towns of Gondar and Addis Ababa.

When you arrive in Gondar you will visit the magnificent mountain scenery, the Royal enclosure and the famous churches of Debre Birhan Selassie dated back 17th century.

 

Itinerary

Upon arrival at Bole International Airport you will be met by a Scenic Ethiopia Tours representative and be taken to your reserved hotel. Depending on your arrival time, we have various sightseeing options The largest city of Ethiopia and its capital city at the same time is Addis Abeba, which in Amharic means "a new flower". It is located in the center of the country, 2400 above the sea. It is one of the highest-located capital cities in the world. According to many sources, Addis Abeba is third in such classification, after Bolivian La Paz and Ecuador's Quito. Before noon our tour will begin with seeing the orthodox cathedral of the Holy Trinity. It is the most important church in Ethiopia. In this church, there is a mausoleum of the last emperor of Ethiopia - Haile Selasje. His wife is also buried there. Then, we will see the National Museum that is said to be one of the most important museums in whole Sub-Saharian Africa. 3.2 million-years old bones of our grand.... Ancestor - Lucy, are one of the most famous exhibit of their collection. The attention of visitors is drawn by a rich collection of insignia of emperor and churches, costumes and weapons. The oldest exhibits are rock sculptures and inscriptions from the times of Queen Saba, found near Aksum and in today's Eritrea. The lunch break will take place in the restaurant serving Ethiopian dishes and local beer at one of the oldest and the first hotel built by emperor Menelik II and his wife empress Tayitu hotel. Afternoon (After lunch) we will climb the Entoto hill located 3200 m above the sea. Here located was the capital city of Ethiopia, before Menelik II moved it to Addis Abeba. The king's palace remained until today. The local museum exhibits crowns belonging to kings and church, costumes and insignia.
Fly to Gondar and take the airport shuttle transfer to the Town (20 minute) and visit the Royal enclosure. The Royal Capital of Ethiopia, Gondar was founded in 1636 by Emperor Fassiladas. In the afternoon you will visit the city of Gondar with the drive to the Castles and Churches built by Emperor Fassiladas and his descendants. Proceed to the fascinating Debre Birhan Selassie (The Enlightening of Trinity) with Wonderful murals art, Qusquam Church. Debre Birhan Selassie Near the Royal Enclosure is a small church with some of the finest examples of art of the Orthodox Church. Nearly every inch of the church's interior has been beautifully painted. 80 cherubic angels look down from the ceiling while saints and demons’ line its walls. Built by King Iyasu in the late 17th century, Debre Birhan Selassie (meaning Light of the Trinity) was miraculously spared in the Mahdist War of the 1880's when, according to legend, a swarm of bees held off the invading soldiers. Fasil Bath Around 2km northwest of the piazza lies Fasiladas’ Bath, which has been attributed to both Fasiladas and Iyasu I. The large rectangular pool is overlooked by a charming building, thought by some to be a vacation home. It’s a beautiful and peaceful spot, where snakelike tree roots digest sections of the stone walls. It was likely to have been constructed for religious celebrations, the likes of which still go on today. Once a year, it’s filled with water for the Timkat celebration. After the water is blessed by the bishop, the pool becomes a riot of splashing water, shouts and laughter as a crowd of hundreds jumps in. The ceremony replicates Christ’s baptism in the Jordan River and is seen as an important renewal of faith. It is actually a 3-day affair preceded by the eve of Timket when the dramatic processions take place through a night of fasting, to the great day itself and the commemoration of Christ’s baptism in the Jordan River. Ketera, the Eve of Timket is when the Priests bring out the Tabots – replicas of the 2 tablets of laws received by Moses, which are normally housed inside the altar symbolizing the Ark of the Covenant. Priests bless the water of the pool or river where the next day’s celebration will take place. It is the Tabot, rather than the church building which is consecrated and given extreme reverence. Visitors have the unique chance to experience a festival lost to the rest of the world.
Caught the flight back from Gondar to Addis, getting to sleep in a little later of this evening and enjoy a leisurely Local dish in the best restaurant of the town. Then back you your home!

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3 Days Addis Ababa, Gondar and Timket (Epiphany