NATIONAL PARKS SAFARIS ETHIOPIA

HIGHLIGHTS, WHERE THEY ARE AND HOW TO VISIT THEM


 

 

 

DALLOL FACTS

DALLOL FACTS: The hottest desert of Africa is the land of the Afar tribe where you can visit hot sulphur springs, Erta Ale Volcano, Afar camel caravans

Dallol Desert

The Dallol Desert - or Dalol or Danakil Depression is desert region in the Northern part of the Afar Triangle where 3 tectonic plates press against each other, causing the land to sink. In order to enter the lowlands, one must get a permission in Berahile, at about 120km from the Tigray capital, Mek'ele.

 

Why consider booking our our Ethiopia Culture & National Parks modules? Because for the same price, our tour gets you to ALL cultural places Ethiopia is so famous for, and on top of that, you get to see up to 12 National Parks/Reserves accompanied by a conservation forester. There is nothing similar on the market. As Ethiopia can be combined with other East African countries, we organize tours in modules. Destinations Overview: Historical Circuit; Danakil Depression; Eathern Route; Simien Mountains; Bale Mountains; Southern Parks Safari; Gambella; Addis Ababa BUT WAIT: if you buy your international ticket with Ethiopia Airlines, they will sell the internal flights at a price that you can't even ride the bus for. But you MUST plan it all in one package and making changes will be very costly. So let us help you plan your entire trip for an incredibly low price!

 

With the and night temperature averaging at abou 34o, the Dallol Desert is the hottest place on earth and and has the harshest climate of Ethiopia. The Awash River that comes for the South East, but never reaches the ocean as it evaporates in the Afar Triangle. The lowest point of the desert is Lake Assale and the second lowest area is Lake Afrera. Lake Asale or Assale used to be connected to the Red Sea, and after it was cut off the water evaporated, leaving enormous salt deposits. For millennia the salt deposits of Lake Assale provided wealth to the Ethiopian empire, as the Afar mined salt and shipped the salt on their camels caravans over great distances to Asia. Lake Afrera is an alkaline water which is commercially used for salt extraction from salt pans along the of the lake.

 

Most the Afar people are semi-nomadic pastoralists while some engage themselves in salt mining and transportation.

 

The Dallol sulphur hot springs are located at an abandoned salt mine site along the shore of Lake Assale.

 

The Dallol Depression is geologically extremely active and is scattered with many active volcanoes, of which the Erta Ale Volcano and the Dallol Volcano most famous, while the entire Afar Triangle is covered with lava beds almost everywhere.

 

The Afar Triangle has also become know for the archaeological finding place of then oldest homonid fossil at a place called Hadar and which was dubbed Lucy after the Beatles song.

 

To get an impression of the climate:

 

Climate data for the Dallol Depression at Dallol

Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Year

Record high °C (°F)

46
(115)

46
(115)

46
(115)

45
(113)

45
(113)

45
(113)

46
(115)

47
(117)

46
(115)

46
(115)

45
(113)

46
(115)

47
(117)

Average high °C (°F)

40.9
(105.6)

40.5
(104.9)

40.4
(104.7)

40.8
(105.4)

40.3
(104.5)

40.7
(105.3)

40.7
(105.3)

40.1
(104.2)

40.1
(104.2)

40.2
(104.4)

40.3
(104.5)

40.9
(105.6)

40.49
(104.88)

Daily mean °C (°F)

35.6
(96.1)

35.6
(96.1)

35.8
(96.4)

35.6
(96.1)

35.0
(95)

35.9
(96.6)

35.7
(96.3)

35.9
(96.6)

35.9
(96.6)

35.9
(96.6)

35.1
(95.2)

35.0
(95)

35.58
(96.05)

Average low °C (°F)

30.1
(86.2)

30.2
(86.4)

30.4
(86.7)

30.8
(87.4)

30.6
(87.1)

30.1
(86.2)

30.7
(87.3)

30.7
(87.3)

30.7
(87.3)

30.6
(87.1)

30.9
(87.6)

30.2
(86.4)

30.5
(86.92)

Record low °C (°F)

24
(75)

24
(75)

24
(75)

24
(75)

24
(75)

23
(73)

23
(73)

23
(73)

24
(75)

24
(75)

24
(75)

24
(75)

23
(73)

 % humidity

88

89

90

89

85

80

80

81

83

83

82

85

84.6

 

DANAKIL DESERT

MODULE

DANAKIL DESERT: DISCOVER THE RAW NATURE AND OTHER ETHIOPIAN NATIONAL PARKS with former professional to Ethiopian Park Service

Day 1 Mek'ele - Hamed Ale ±180km

  1. Berahile, visit the salt market and pay the entrance fee into the Danakil Desert;

  2. Hamed Ale base camp.

 

Day 2 Hamed Ale - Erta Ale ± 80km;

  1. Sulfur geysers at Dalol;

  2. Sulfur pool;

  3. Salt winning site of the Afar People;

  4. hike up the Erta Ale after 4 o clock to benefit from the lower temperature;

  5. Make camp at the top of Erta Ale;

  6. Admire the glow of the Erta Ale Ale at night.

 

Day 3 Erta Ale - Mek'ele ±260km

  1. Walk down from Erta Ale;

  2. Depart from the Danakil Desert to return to Mekele.

Costs $595

. Included: meals, transportation, fees, non-alcoholic beverages, tee/coffee at meals. Minimum number of  passengers is 2.

Ask for a group discount.

 

Dallol Expedition

Tourist vehicles to the Dallol Depression Cross country to the Erta Ale volcano through the Dallol Depression
Camping at Hamed Ela, Dallol Depression Amed Ela camp for visiting Dallol

Our Ethiopia safaris include this Ethiopia Desert Route module. Be aware that the Dallol Depression has no comfortable accommodations and only has one road traversing it, which does not reach some of the most interesting places like the sulfur springs, the Afar salt mining site and the Erta Ale Volcano. Tourists are accommodated in tents and primitive structures, while food and water is brought along. 

 

Lake Afrera below sea level, Dallol Depression, Ethiopia  

 

 

Ethiopia's lowest place, Lake Assale, 115 m below sea level.

 

Salt Formations

Salt cliffs and other salt formations at Lake Assale.

Alcaline salt formation, Dallol Depression, Ethiopia Extinct geyser, Dallol Depression, Ethiopia

Lake Karum has interesting salt rocks.

The sulphur hot springs at the former Dallol salt mine, are continuously changing location, which leads to dead geyser-heads in the landscape.

 

Hot sulfur spring, Lake Asale,Dallol Depression, Ethiopia Asale Lake, Dallol Depression hot springs, Ethiopia

A Hot lake at in the Dallol desert with saucer shaped formations and coloured crystal development in the water.

 

Hot sulfur springs at the former Dallol Mining camp, Lake Asale, Danakil Depression Hot springs, Dallol, Ethiopia

The Sulfur hot springs at the former Dallol mining camp with colors varying from ochre, lemon yellow, snow white to lime green.

 

Afar salt extraction Camel and mules Dallor Depresion
Camels at the Dallol Depression, Ethiopia

Afar Salt Mining

The cutting of salt tiles at the Afar mining site.

Camels and donkeys waiting to get loaded for the salt transport to Berahile.

   

 

Afar Tribe

The Afar are herders living in very harsh climate conditions, with hardly any rainfall, extreme temperatures and strong winds loaded with sand and dust. Their homes are made from woven mats to keep out the dust and sand.  

Afar tribal hut Afar wind proof hut
Afar tribal men Afar mothers with babies
Afar man Afar teener girl

Afar elder.

Afar women and children.

   
Lake Afrera, an alkaline lake in the Dallol Depression

Fresh water spring at alkaline Lake Afrera

Wading in Lake Afrera.

   

Wildlife of the Dallol Desert

Wildlife in the Dallol Depression is extremely rare and threatened, but some species still hang on to their survival. You will not see a great variety of species, even among the birds, sightings are rare. However, some very exiting species still are around and if you see them, it will be a very rewarding encounter.

Oryx gazella in the Dallol Depression Somali Ostrich in the Dalloll desert.

The Oryx, a draught mammal which can survive days without water.

The Somali Ostrich in the Dallol Depression.

   
Cheetah in the Dalloll Depression, Ethiopia Somali Ass in the Dalloll Desert

A few individuals of Cheetahs still live in the Dallol Depression.

A few Somali Wild Ass are surviving the Dallol Desert.

   

After visiting Lake Assale and the Erta Ale Volcano, it is possible to continue to Lake Afrera and from there to the Lucy site at Hadar, but most people return to Tigray capital Mek'ele to continue from there to Lalibela.

 

Ethiopia modernizes and changes more rapidly than any other country in Africa. Many features may not be there anymore in the near future. If you want to see it the way it was for thousands of years, see it now before it has changed forever! Compose your own once-in-a-lifetime Ethiopia-Africa-Adventure from our affordable modules:

Famous Ethiopia Historical Circuit

Simien Mountains trek or car visit

Danakil Depression and Erte Ale Volcano Expedition

Awash Babile Harar Safari Tour

Ethiopia Central and Southern Parks & Tribes Safari Tour

Bale Mountains National Park and Sof Omar Caves Tour

Gambella National Park Safari

Addis Ababa City Tour & Airport Transfer

All Ethiopia modules and prices together

We designed our itineraries in such a way that you can compose a 2 to 4 weeks journey from different modules that can show you the entire country or just the parts that interest you, all depending on your personal preferences, available time and budget. Email us on your interests and we can discuss a custom program with you by phone (we have phone lines from the USA and Europe) or skype. So, weather you have a great ethnic affinity, are a birdwatcher or want to go on safari, contact us and we work out a customized program that focuses on YOUR interests.

Blue Nile Falls, EthiopiaSt. George Church, LalibelaStellas, Axum, EthiopiaTukuls, Lalibela, EthiopiaElephant bull, Babile, EthiopiaEthiopian Wolf, Bale National Park

Gelada, Simien Mountains National ParkFacilides Bathroom, Gondar, EtiopiaWabia Ibex, Simien MountainsChurch, Lake Tana, EthiopiaErica trees, Bale Mountains National Park.Facilides Castle, Gondar, Ethiopia

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport is home of Ethiopian Airlines, featuring Africa's youngest fleet of the latest intercontinental jet airplanes - including 2 Dreamliners - as well as short-distance Bombardier turboprops for very comfortable, affordable and reliable in-country flights servicing all major cities of Ethiopia. The second best airline of Africa, will fly you non-stop from the USA and Europe to Addis Ababa. Take our 1-week Ethiopia Cultural Monuments Tour and than continue for your Kenya or Tanzania safari - or any other East African capital - thus completing your journey. IF YOU BUY YOUR INTERNATIONAL TICKET FROM ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES, YOU WILL GET MOST INTERNAL FLIGHTS FOR $25 - $35 PER LEG! BUT CHANGING AFTERWARDS IS EXPENSIVE, SO WORK OUT A SCHEDULE WITH US TO GET A FABULOUS DEAL FOR FLYING THROUGH THE COUNTRY IN STEAD OF SPENDING ENDLESS TIME ON THE ROAD!!!

 

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Phone USA:

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Phone Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (++251) (0) 911 440 915
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