Historical Places to visit in Ethiopia – Horn of Africa

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Updated May 6, 2017 / Joรฃo Leitรฃo / 3 Comments / Filed in: / Reading time 6 minutes
Historical Places to visit in Ethiopia - Horn of Africa

Historical Places to visit in Ethiopia – Horn of Africa

Historical places in Ethiopia

Ethiopia is a fantastic East African destination.

I had the opportunity to visit Ethiopia and explore its major historical sites.

Considered as the cradle of mankind, Ethiopia is the oldest region of human settlement.

I urge everyone to give Ethiopia a chance and discover its friendly people, breathtaking landscapes, and incredible ancient history.

Yeha Cutural Site road sign

Yeha Cutural Site road sign – visit Ethiopia

Ethiopia – the first Christian nation – holds fantastic religious buildings and other historical destinations with castles, palaces, and hundreds-year-old mausoleums.

Travel Ethiopia

Travel Ethiopia

On this page, I make a list of 37 historical places to travel in Ethiopia which are undoubtedly the country’s major tourist attractions. Don’t forget to leave a comment and share this page with your friends.

โ„น๏ธ Short facts about Ethiopia:

  • Zipporah – Moses’s wife – was an Ethiopian.
  • Queen of Sheba – an Ethiopian – had a son with King Solomon of Israel.
  • King Solomon’s reign dates back from 970 until 931 BC.
  • Emperor Menelik I, King Solomon and Queen of Sheba’s son, founded the dynasty that ruled Ethiopia until the 1970’s.
  • The Ark of the Covenant was brought from Jerusalem to Ethiopia by Menelik I, following his visit to his father King Solomon.
  • The holiest shrine in Ethiopia is the Cathedral of St. Mary of Zion in Axum, where The Ark of the Covenant is kept.
  • The Ark of the Covenant contains Moses Ten Commandments stone tablets.
  • Ethiopia is often mentioned in the Bible.
  • In the Acts of the Apostles – the fifth book of the New Testament – an Ethiopian was the first person baptized into the Christian faith.
  • Apostle Matthew evangelized Ethiopia during the first century AD.
  • During the reign of Emperor Ezana, Christianity became Ethiopia state religion in the fourth century AD.
  • Ethiopia borders Eritrea, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Kenya and the Republic of Djibouti.
  • Ethiopia is the second African country by population.
  • Ethiopia is considered the cradle of humanity, as the oldest specimens of Homo sapiens were discovered there in 2003.
  • World Heritage Sites in Ethiopia: Aksum, Fasil Ghebbi, Gondar Region, the Fortified Historic Town of Harar Jugol, Konso Cultural Landscape, Lower Valley of the Awash, Lower Valley of the Omo, Rock-Hewn Churches of Lalibela, Tiya and Simien National Park.

๐Ÿ“ท Historical Places to Visit Ethiopia

โœ… 1-Atatami Kidus Mikael Church

18th century Gondar Atatami Kidus Mikael church built by Emperor Dawit III, Ethiopia

Atatami Kidus Mikael church in Gondar

18th century Gondar Atatami Kidus Mikael church built by Emperor Dawit III, Ethiopia.

Quick facts about Atatami Kidus Mikael Church:

  • The church of St. Michael
  • Built during the reign of Emperor Dawit III (1716-1721)

โœ… 2-Debre Birhan Selassie Church

17th Century Gondar Debre Birhan Selassie church built by Emperor Eyasu II, Ethiopia

Debre Birhan Selassie church in Gondar

17th Century Debre Birhan Selassie church built by Emperor Eyasu II in Gondar, Ethiopia.

Interior of 17th Century Gondar Debre Birhan Selassie church built by Emperor Eyasu II, Ethiopia

Debre Birhan Selassie church in Gondar

The interior of 17th Century Debre Birhan Selassie church built by Emperor Eyasu II in Gondar, Ethiopia.

Quick facts about Debre Birhan Selassie Church:

  • The church name means Mount of Light of the Trinity
  • Built in the reign of Emperor Iyasu I and consecrated in 1694
  • The paintings were made between 1815 and 1825
  • The building is 27 m long and 7.4 m wide

โœ… 3-Gondar Castle

17th century Gondar Castle founded by Emperor Fasilidas, Ethiopia

Gondar Castle

17th century Gondar Castle founded by Emperor Fasilidas, Ethiopia.

Quick facts about Gondar Castle:

  • This building is the remains of an old fortress-city
  • The name in local language is Fasil Ghebbi
  • Inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979
  • Covers an area of about 70,000 square meters
  • Founded by Emperor Fasilides in the 17th and 18th centuries

โœ… 4-Bet Giyorgis Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Giyorgis in Lalibela

Church of Bet Giyorgis in Lalibela

12th century rock-hewn Church of Bet Giyorgis in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 5-Emir Nur Tomb

Emir Nur Tomb in Harar, Ethiopia

Emir Nur Tomb in Harar

Emir Nur Muslim Tomb in Harar, Ethiopia.

โœ… 6-Yeha Temple

Yeha Temple is the oldest standing structure in Ethiopia, Tigray Region, Ethiopia

Yeha Temple

Yeha Temple is the oldest standing structure in Ethiopia, Tigray Region, Ethiopia.

Yeha Temple entrance, Ethiopia

Yeha Temple

Yeha Temple entrance, Ethiopia.

โœ… 7-Grat Beal Gebri Ruins

Ruins of Grat Beal Gebri in Yeha, Ethiopia

Grat Beal Gebri Ruins

Ruins of Grat Beal Gebri in Yeha, Ethiopia.

โœ… 8-St George’s Cathedral

St George's Orthodox cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Emperor Haile Selassie was crowned there in 1930

St George’s Orthodox cathedral in Addis Ababa

St George’s Orthodox Cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Emperor Haile Selassie was crowned there in 1930.

โœ… 9-Gebre Meskel Tombs

Inside the Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum, Ethiopia

Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum

Inside the Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum, Ethiopia.

Outside the Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum, Ethiopia

Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum

Outside the Gebre Meskel Tombs in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 10-Our Lady Mary of Zion Church

Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia

Our Lady Mary of Zion Church in Axum

Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 11-Bet Gabriel and Rufael Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Gabriel and Rufael in Lalibela

Church of Bet Gabriel and Rufael in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Gabriel and Rufael in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 12-Chapel of the Tablet

The Chapel of the Tablet at the Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia

Chapel of the Tablet in Axum

The Chapel of the Tablet at the Church of Our Lady Mary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 13-Queen of Sheba’s Palace

Dungur, the Ruins of Queen of Sheba's Palace in Axum, Ethiopia

Queen of Sheba’s Palace in Axum

Dungur, the Ruins of Queen of Sheba’s Palace in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 14-Queen of Sheba’s Bath

Queen of Sheba's Bath reservoir in Axum, Ethiopia

Queen of Sheba’s Bath in Axum

Queen of Sheba’s Bath reservoir in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 15-Northern Stelae Park

1700-year-old Northern Stelae Park in Axum, Ethiopia

Northern Stelae Park in Axum

1700-year-old Northern Stelae Park in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 16-Lioness of Gobedra

Lioness of Gobedra Stone Carving in Axum, Ethiopia

Lioness of Gobedra in Axum

The Lioness of Gobedra 3 m / 10 ft Stone Carving in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 17-King Ezana Inscription Stone

King Ezana fourth century AD Inscription stone in Axum, Ethiopia

King Ezana Inscriptions in Axum

King Ezana fourth century AD Inscription stone in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 18-King Bazen Tomb

Inside the King Bazen Tomb in Axum, Ethiopia

King Bazen Tomb in Axum

Inside the King Bazen Tomb in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 19-Bet Medhane Alem Church

Inside Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Medhane Alem in Lalibela

Church of Bet Medhane Alem in Lalibela

Inside Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Medhane Alem in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 20-Gudit Stelae Field

Gudit Stelae Field in Axum, Ethiopia

Gudit Stelae Field in Axum

Gudit Stelae Field in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 21-Axum Stone quarries

Ancient stone quarries in Axum, Ethiopia

Stone quarries in Axum

Ancient stone quarries in Axum, Ethiopia.

โœ… 22-Ethnological Museum

Addis Ababa Ethnological Museum and Haile Selassie's former palace in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Ethnological Museum in Addis Ababa

Addis Ababa Ethnological Museum and Haile Selassie’s former palace in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

โœ… 23-National Museum of Ethiopia

National Museum of Ethiopia in Addis Ababa

National Museum in Addis Ababa

National Museum of Ethiopia in Addis Ababa.

โœ… 24-Yekatit 12 Monument

Yekatit 12 Square Monument in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Yekatit 12 Monument in Addis Ababa

Yekatit 12 Square Monument in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

โœ… 25-Meyazia 27 Monument

Meyazia 27 Square Monument in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Meyazia 27 Monument in Addis Ababa

Meyazia 27 Square Monument in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

โœ… 26-Fasiladas Bath Timket

Fasiladas Bath Timket in Gondar, Ethiopia

Fasiladas Bath Timket in Gondar

Fasiladas Bath Timket in Gondar, Ethiopia.

โœ… 27-Nova Gorgora

17th century Portuguese Jesuit settlement of Nova Gorgora, Ethiopia

Nova Gorgora in Lake Tana

17th century Portuguese Jesuit settlement of Nova Gorgora in Lake Tana, Ethiopia.

17th century Portuguese Jesuit settlement of Nova Gorgora, Ethiopia

Nova Gorgora in Lake Tana

17th century Portuguese Jesuit settlement of Nova Gorgora in Lake Tana, Ethiopia.

โœ… 28-Harar

The Fortified Historic Town Harar Jugol, Ethiopia

Harar old town

The Fortified Historic Town Harar Jugol, Ethiopia.

โœ… 29-Arthur Rimbaud House Museum

Arthur Rimbaud House Museum in Harar, Ethiopia

Arthur Rimbaud House Museum in Harar

Arthur Rimbaud House Museum in Harar, Ethiopia.

โœ… 30-Bet Uraiel Church

Priest outside Bet Uraiel Church in Lalibela, Ethiopia

Bet Uraiel Church in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Uraiel in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 31-Sheikh Abadir Tomb

Sheikh Abadir Tomb in Harar, Ethiopia

Sheikh Abadir Tomb in Harar

Sheikh Abadir Muslim Tomb in Harar, Ethiopia.

โœ… 32-Abdella Sherif City Museum

Abdella Sherif City Museum in Harar, Ethiopia

Abdella Sherif City Museum in Harar

Abdella Sherif City Museum in Harar, Ethiopia.

โœ… 33-Bet Abba Libanos Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Abba Libanos in Lalibela

Church of Bet Abba Libanos in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Abba Libanos in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 34-Bet Amanuel Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Amanuel in Lalibela

Church of Bet Amanuel in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Amanuel in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 35-Bet Golgotha Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Golgotha in Lalibela

Church of Bet Golgotha in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Golgotha in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 36-Bet Maryam Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Maryam in Lalibela

Church of Bet Maryam in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Maryam in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

โœ… 37-Bet Merkorios Church

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Merkorios in Lalibela

Church of Bet Merkorios in Lalibela

Rock-Hewn Church of Bet Merkorios in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

Visual artist shares inspiring photos and exotic travel destinations. Adventure travel blogger with ideas and narratives to motivate independent travelers and audacious backpackers. Intense journeys into more than 126 countries around Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Europe, North America, South America and Oceania since 1999. Expat in Morocco - North Africa since 2007, polyglot and proud Lonely Planet Pathfinders blogger.

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3 Comments. Leave new

Chris Hawkins
August 1, 2016 11:02 am

Joรฃo,

Hรก muitos anos nรฃo tive oportunidade viajar para Etรญopia!

Obrigado pelos fotos de esta grande paรญs!

Abraรงos

Reply

your page is so much useful, its my hope that i will be to those places sooner in my life. keep it up.

Reply
tesfay gebrekiros
September 29, 2015 7:09 am

thank you friend i proud of you because u introduce my country . Ethiopia is one of the home of different historical place in our world

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