Celebration of the Finding of The True Cross

Celebrate Meskel Festival with hiking, swimming, and food and wine tasting at eco sites.

Experience the must-see once-in-a-lifetime Intangible World Heritage site, MESKEL - the celebration of the finding of the True Cross Jesus Christ was crucified on where all the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Churches' Sunday school students come to the Meskel Square with their colorful uniforms and perform different religious songs. Every year one church takes the lead to show the process of the finding of the True Cross by Queen Elena/Eleni who is the mother of Constantine in a very unique, artistic way with lots of symbolism. Finally, blessed by the Patriarch the big bonfire will be lit and everyone will lit their wax candles end-to-end of the square.

In addition, multiple activities at different eco-tourism sites where there are sustainable community-based tourism practices such as hiking on mountains, bathing and swimming at natural hot springs and tasting local foods and wine with the additional UNESCO-registered site of Tiya Stalae site take place in this tour.

Indulge yourselves with a mesmerizing experience leaving you with a feeling of nostalgia.

Note: This program can also be combined with the Historic Route of UNESCO Heritage sites 


Day 1 - Fri. 20 Sept. 2024:

Arrive Addis and have a short city tour of the city.

Day 2 - Sat. 21 Sept. 2024:

Drive to Durame town. 285 kms.

Day 3 - Sun. 22 Sept. 2024:

Hike 777 steps on Mount Hambericho, a community based eco tourism site, and drive to Hawassa. 120 Kms

Day 4 - Mon. 23 Sept. 2024:

Visit the local Fish market with aquatic birds and walk through the Amora Gedel park as it is called locally to mean 'Eagle's Valley' and drive to Yirgalem town and visit the Sidama Village around Aregash Eco-Lodge and proceed to Wondo Genet. 103 Kms.

Day 5 - Tue. 24 Sept. 2024:

With a stop at Abjata-Shala National Park, drive Wondo Genet to Ziway and visit one of the island Monastery Tulu Gudo. 105 Kms

Day 6 - Wed. 25 Sept. 2024:

Drive Ziway to Addis via Tiya Stalae - a UNESCO Heritage site. 183 Kms

Day 7 - Thu. 26 Sept. 2024:

Enjoy one of Ethiopia's Intangible World Heritages registered by UNESCO, MESKEL Celebration/Festival in the afternoon and departure.