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The Simien Mountains Trek

From £2899 for 13 days
Trip Overview
The dramatic skyline of peaks and jagged volcanic plugs which tower over the highland plateaux of the Simien Mountains compete with rugged gorges and deep gullies to form what is, arguably, the most awe-inspiring landscape in Africa. As we trek through this distant mountain range we pass small hamlets where villagers eke out an existence from the limited arable land. We may come across large troops of Gelada baboons foraging on the escarpment; and, with luck, spot Walia ibex and Ethiopian wolves.
Essential Info
Starts: Arrive Addis Ababa; half-day city tour.
Ends: Fly to Addis Ababa; evening depart.
Ages: Min 16
Theme: Walking
Trip Code: ETYE
Activity Level:     
Countries visited: Ethiopia
What's Included

Meals

All breakfasts, 9 lunches, 9 dinners

Transport

9 nights wild camping, 3 nights standard hotels with en suite facilities 10 days point-to-point walking with full porterage

Accommodation

Trip Highlights

•    Castles of Gondar

•    Trekking through dramatic scenery

•    Endemic flora & fauna

•    Remote mountain communities

•    Led by an experienced Ethiopian guide and a UK trekking leader

Dates & Availability
Start date
End date
Price
Availability
Departing: 5th Oct 2020
Returning: 17th Oct 2020
£2,899pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 9th Nov 2020
Returning: 21st Nov 2020
£2,949pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 23rd Nov 2020
Returning: 5th Dec 2020
£2,899pp
G
Availability: Good
Itinerary & Notes
The group flight arrives in the morning. Please note that if you are being picked up at the airport (either on the group transfer or private transfer) you will have to exit the terminal to find our representative with the Exodus board. You may see people with signs inside the terminal but they are generally people with special permission such as the UN, Government or hotels with desks inside the terminal. In the afternoon we go on a sightseeing tour that takes us to the Ethnographic Museum and the Church of the Trinity where Haile Selassies' remains now lie. *Ghion Hotel or similar*
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Reviews
       
A great trip through the Simien mountains, with spectacular views
       
Overall a very good trek. Yes, some of the days are a little hard but then it says that in the trip notes so read them! Great views and wildlife and a, mostly, great support team and leaders. Only reason I've not given this trek an "Excellent" rating is due to the group of very annoying scouts that apparently all trek groups must have whilst in the Simiens. They feel obliged to walk six inches behind you and interfere frequently when not required. Some verbal encouragement keeps them out of your hair for a while but they'll soon forget! Not irritating enough for me to suggest going elsewhere for your trek, but I'd suggest that both the Brit and local leader brief them to stick to "scouting" and route finding and that Europeans like our personal space! (And if we want to run down a 1000m decent then that's just fine even if not wise!)
       
This trip is a great mixture of culture and trekking. Time in Addis at the Ethnographic museum and the experience of the Debtre Birhan Selassie church in Gondor highlights the deep richness of the culture and history of Ethiopia. It is a fascinating country so desperately underestimated by the outside world. The trek itself, particularly along the Enatyie Escarpment is full of great views and unusual rock formations. In some parts there is an overwhelming feeling of isolation and timelessness. The antics of the Gelada Baboons only adds to the enjoyment.
       
The Simien mountains is a world class trek - not too challenging, but challenging enough for most able hillwalkers - the three toughest days are days 5, 6 and 7 - our group was strong and we managed them well within daylight with a couple of hours to spare. Ethiopia is unusual for most African countries, as it has many archeological/ historical sites - Gondor (part of this trip), Lalibela, Axium and Bahir Dar, all worth a visit.
       
This trip takes you off the beaten path into the Simien Mountains of Ethiopia. It is a national park with a single road going through it providing a connection to the outside world for the 2,000 families still living in the villages there. The trek takes you through the high-, mid- and low-lands with terrific and varied scenery. You will see plenty of Geladas (up close) and if you're lucky, also the Walia Ibex and Ethiopian Wolf. The trip is long (140+ kms and 10 days) and the hiking is quite tough. I would rate this trip to be more like a "6" rather than a "5" due to the distance traveled and the steep ascents and descents with difficult footing.
       
A gentle 2 day cultural introduction to Ethiopia via the museums, churches and castles before some serious trekking in the mountains, or as out guide called it - Ethiopian flat! A well thought out trekking itinerary, with a few easy days to begin with to help us get used to altitude. Tougher days followed but everyone coped and the support from our guide, Messi, and the local crew was excellent. For our efforts we were rewarded with fantastic views over the mountains, including a good sunset, and a 4000m peak or two (optional). Also some great chances to see the local plant and wildlife.
       
Those epic views come at a price - lots of steep ascents and descents - but The Simiens are achingly beautiful and worth the effort.
       
The website describes this trek as at the harder end of challenging and I think that is absolutely spot on. It is also totally worthwhile with the astounding scenery, remarkable wild life and smiling locals.
       
Just back from a seriously good trekking & camping holiday taking in the Simen Mountains in Northern Ethiopian. Filled all my expectation of a cultural trekking holiday. To enjoy the trek you must be physically fit and used to a multy day regime with early starts hot days and possibly cold nights for this Challenging graded holiday.
       
There is a great variety offered on this trek. Our November departure started in grazing land where we climbed to see some stunning views of the mountains. After the Ras Dashen ascent the landscape and vegetation changed to be more arid before dropping into the Lush and hot lowlands. As well as the walking and stunning views we had chance to see a great deal of wildlife (wolves, Ibex, Gelada and a good variety of birds). The start was on the tourist trail, we often shared with other groups and were in site of the "road". However, once we dropped into the lowlands we got a great feeling of being off the beaten track and a good chance to interact with the locals as we were camping on the outskirts of the various villages.
       
This was a challenging but excellent trip with so much to see and experience . For someone like myself who has suffered with altitude sickness in the past this has got to be the ideal trip as you have time to acclimatise during the course of the journey and I had no problems at any stage.
       
Great trek, challenging and a wonderful experience. Both guides ( Sara & Messi ) we’re first class and the group gelled so well. Thank you everyone and happy travelling for 2020.
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