Omo Valley Cultural Safari

    • Ethiopia

Duration: 11 days/10nights

Route: Cultural route of Southern Ethiopia- Omo valley tribes

Transportation: 4×4 vehicles

Minimum group size: 2 pax

As the northern part of the country is notable for its historical relics, there are the Omotic tribes of the south who still adhere to ancient animistic rituals. Beaded leather skirts and complementing body painting, feathered headdresses, and dramatic scarification make the Hamar, Bumi, Karo, and Bena people visually outstanding. Even more unusual are the isolated Mursi tribe whose women wear large clay lip plates symbolizing their worth and beauty.

This itinerary gets travelers off the beaten path with an opportunity to learn about and interact with some of Ethiopia’s most unique cultural groups. The itinerary covers many of the tribes in the Omo valley including the Hamer people (known for their bull-jumping ceremony), Mursi people (known for their leap plates), Karo (known for their body paintings), Dassenech, Ari, Dorze, Tsemai, etc. In addition to the visit to their respective villages, the itinerary is also scheduled to meet the weekly markets at Key Afer, Dimeka, and Turmi. This tour is ideal for photographers and culture lovers.

Day 1 – Arrival + Addis
Be welcomed by your guide on arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Air Port, and transfer into the hotel. O/N – Jupiter International or other Similar 4* Hotel

Day 2 – Addis – Tiya – Adadi Mariam – Langano

Distance: 220km
Road condition: 196km Asphalted and 24km gravel
Driving hour: 6-7hrs with visit, lunch, and photo stops.

Drive south to the Rift Valley Lake of Langano visiting the rock-hewn church of Adadi Mariam that is believed to be the southernmost church founded by King Lalibela, the pre-historic archeological site of Melka Kunture, and the stellar field of Tiya (UNESCO World Heritage Site). At Lake Langano enjoy swimming and bird watching around.
O/N – Sabana Beach Resort or similar

Day 3 – Langano – Arba Minch
Distance: 307km
Road condition: Only 15Km gravel and the rest is asphalt
Driving hour: 7-8hrs with visits, lunch, and photo stops

Drive from Langano to Arba Minch through the fertile land of Wolayta and Alaba regions, The Alaba people are very famous for their beautiful home painting style. And on the way visit Sinkile Wildlife Sanctuary, here you will see the endemic Swain’s heart best and other mammals.
O/N – Paradise Lodge or similar

Day 4 – Arba Minch
After breakfast drive to Chencha, to visit the Dorze village, the Dorze people are well known for the weaving tradition and their attractive elephant shaped traditional hut made from bamboo and false banana tree leaves, here you will also see the daily activity of the Doreze people, drive back to Arba Minch for lunch and in the afternoon you will have a boat trip on Lake Chamo one of the rift valley lakes, on this lake, you will visit the Crocodile Market where you can see a large number of crocodiles, different aquatic birds, and hippos.
O/N – Paradise Lodge or similar

Day 5 – Arba Minch – Jinka
Distance: 275 km
Road condition: 255kms Asphalted, 20 -gravel under construction
Driving hours: 6 -7 hours with visits, photo stop, and lunch

Drive 275 km south to Jinka visiting the villages of the Konso people who are renowned for their colorful hand-woven cotton clothes and beautiful rock terraces
O/N – Eco Omo Lodge or similar

Day 6 – Jinka
Distance: 140 km round trip
Road condition: Good condition gravel road 
Driving hours: 4-5 hours with visits, photo stop, and lunch

Today, you will have an excursion to the Mago National Park and visit the people of Mursi who are typically known for the clay lip plates of the women. Then, drive back to Jinka and visit the Cultural Museum of the People of the Lower Omo Valley.
O/N – Eco Omo Lodge or similar

Day 7 – Jinka – Turmi
Distance: 125 km
Road condition: very good condition gravel road
Driving hours: 4 -5 hours with visits, photo stop, and lunch

Drive to Turmi – the village of the Hamer people whose women are noted for their typical hairdressing, and leather skirts. (If today is Saturday or Tuesday, you will have a stop at the colorful weekly market of the Hamer and the Benna people at Dimeka.)
O/N – Buska Lodge or similar

Day 8 – Turmi
Distance: 144 km round trip
Road condition: gravel road
Driving hour: 7- 8 hours round trip with visits, photo stops, and lunch

In the morning, you will have an excursion to Omo Rate to visit the Dasenech people who are the southernmost people of the country and are known for their scarifications. Then, with a picnic lunch stop at Murulle, head to Korcho – the village of the Karo people. (OR if the day is Saturday or Tuesday, have an excursion in the afternoon to visit the colorful weekly market of the Hamer at Dimeka, or if Monday at Turmi.)
O/N – Buska Lodge or similar

Day 9 – Turmi – Yabello
Distance: 290 km 
Road condition: 75 km –asphalted, 215 km –gravel road
Driving hour: 7-8 hours with visits, photo stop, and lunch

Drive to Yabello with a stop at the villages of the nomadic people of Erbore.
O/N – Yabello Motel or similar

Day 10 – Yabello – Awassa
Distance: 410km
Road condition: full asphalt
Driving hour: 6-7hrs with visits, lunch, and photo stops

Head to the north visiting the nomadic people of Borena, and the other people of Sidama who are renowned for their cultivation of Enset or False Banana.
O/N – Haile Resort or Similar

Day 11 – Awassa – Addis
Distance to drive=275KM / 5-6hrs
Road condition= Full Asphalt road

Visiting the ‘Fish Market’ at the Shore of Lake Awassa, drive back to Addis visiting the chains of the Rift Valley Lakes of Langano, Abiyatta, Shalla, and Ziway. Have a free afternoon in Addis. In the evening before departure, have a farewell dinner party at one of the best traditional restaurants where you will see the folkloric dances of the people of Ethiopia, and taste the variety of Ethiopian meals.

Then, be transferred to the airport for your departure
Included Services:-

1: Accommodation on a twin room sharing basis
2: All meals out of Addis, and only breakfast in Addis
3: All entrance fees
4: All transfer in and out services
5: All ground transportation
6: Professional English speaking guide
7: Portage fees
8: All local guides
9: Scout fees
10: Boat hire on lake Chamo
11: Government tax

Excluded Services:-
1: International airfare
2: Lunch and dinner in Addis
3: Any alcoholic drinks
4: A personal expense like souvenirs, laundry, etc
5: Any expense which is not stated in the ‘Included List’ above