15 Days and 14 Nights Bird Watching
Duration : 15 Days
Transportation : Surface
Destination : Debre Libanos monastery, Ambo Road for Menagesha State Forest, Ethiopian Rift Valley, Zeway lakeshore, Lake Langano, Lake Langano, Wondo Genet, Awassa, Harena forest, Goba
Day 1 : Arrive Addis Ababa, transfer to the hotel.
Day 2 : Day excursion to Debre Libanos monastery, through the Sululta plain to Debre Libanos and the Jima River Gorge, about 110 km from the capital. Sululta plain is a wide shallow valley, ringed by mountains, with many rivers draining into it and forming extensive wetlands for much of the year. En route through the plain we can expect to see Black-winged and Spot-breasted Plover, Wattled Ibis, Blue-winged Goose, Rouget’s Rail, Abyssinian Long claw, Abyssinian Catbird, Common Crane and Wheat Ear.
It is currently the only known location in Ethiopia for the exceptionally rare White-winged Flufftail. We will make a small detour from the main road to take in the very attractive 200 m Aleltu Falls, where we can expect to see White-billed Starling, Ruppel’s Chat, Bearded Vulture, Verreaux’s Eagle, Lanner and Peregrine Falcon. Overnight in hotel.
Day 3 : Drive in the morning to the Ambo Road for Menagesha State Forest, about 50 km from Addis Ababa. The Emperor Zera Yacob (1434-1468), noticing the degradation of the forest around Mount Wechecha, initiated what was perhaps the first reforestation and conservation measure in the region by having Juniper trees planted. We will take a picnic lunch, making our way up through the forest towards the top of Mount Wechecha.
We can expect to see the Abyssinian Catbird, Banded Barbet, Golden-backed Woodpecker, Black-headed Forest Oriole, Wattled Ibis, Yellow-fronted Parrot, Black-winged Lovebird, Abyssinian Ground Thrush, Crowned Eagle and Narina’s Trogan. Among the wildlife species recorded here are: Menelik’s Bushbuck, Leopard, Colobus Monkey, Serval, Grey Duiker, Hyaena, Warthog, Porcupine and Civet Cat. We will return to Addis by the Jima Road, to the south of the forest. Overnight hotel.
Day 4 : Drive to the Ethiopian Rift Valley, turning east at Mojo towards Awash. We will be birding along the way, and will stop for lunch in Nazareth. For the rest of this day’s activities and for the species we can expect to see, Over 460 species of bird have been recorded in this area including: the Abyssinian Roller, Abyssinian Ground Horn Bill, the endemic White-tailed Swallow, Buff Crested Bustard, Dark Chanting Goshawk, Pygmy Falcon, Honey Guide, Woodland Kingfisher, Kori and Arabian Bustard, Black-shouldered Kite, White and Crowned Rosy Patch Shrike, Carmine Bee Eater, Orange-billed Parrot, Lilac Breasted Roller, Lappet faced and Ruppell’s vulture. We will also see a variety of different animals, including Greater and Lesser Kudu, Wart Hog, Dik Dik, Gerenuk, Menelik’s Bushbuck, Soemmering gazelle, Hamadryas baboons, and crocodiles. Overnight in hotel.
Day 5 : The day is dedicated birding in the different habitats of the area, the plains, cliffs, wetlands and riverine forest by the Awash. We can return to the camp for lunch. Camel trekking can be arranged to some of these sites – one gets a great view from on top of a camel, and can also get closer to birds and wildlife. Overnight in hotel.
Day 6 : Today we retrace our steps towards Mojo, birding along the way, and stopping to see the hippo in the pools near Nazret. Than drive to Zeway lakeshore where huge numbers of water birds are congregated. African Pygmy Geese, Yellow-billed and Marabou Storks, Collared Pratincoles, Lesser and Greater Jacanas, African Jacanas, White Pelicans, Fish Eagles, Crowned and Common Cranes are some of the species to be seen here in impressive numbers. Than we will drive to lake Langano Overnight in hotel.
Day 7 : Lake Langano is one of Ethiopian salty and suitable for relaxing and also where some one can swim. The day is dedicated to visit the Shalla and Abiyata National Park, where we can see different birds including flamingos. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 8 : Drive Lake Langano to Wondo Genet hot set among forested hills. Here we will see the Silvery-cheeked Hornbill, White-cheeked Turaco, and Yellow-fronted Parrot. In the evening we will explore the juniper forests behind the hotel, where we can see the Black-headed Forest Oriole, the Golden-backed Woodpecker, Redwing Starling, Grosbeak Weaver, Mountain Wagtail and Black-roughing Swallow. We will also see Colobus monkey, Anubis baboon and bushbuck. Overnight in hotel.
Day 9 : The day is dedicated to walk in the forests around Wondo Genet, for more birds and if some one wants to stay relaxing in the hot spring swimming pool this is a really ideal place for a day relaxing. Overnight in hotel.
Day 10 : Drive Wondo Genet to Awassa birding along the shores of Lake Awassa. In composition this fresh water Lake is different from the alkaline lakes of Abiyata and Shalla. The Black forest near the lake is an additional and interesting birding site. Overnight in hotel.
Day 11 : Early morning visit the fish Market in the lakeshore of Awassa, than drive to the Bale Mountain National Parks. Overnight in hotel.
Day 12 : The day is dedicated birding in the stunning Afro-Alpine setting of the Sanetti plateau, with its striking Afro-Alpine flora, such as the Giant Lobelia and Red Hot Poker. It is the best place in Ethiopia to see the Simien Wolf, the rare caned in the world, while the huge rodent population, including the endemic Giant Mole Rat, supports a variety of raptors. The rare Wattled Crane is often seen, while there are a good number of the Spot-breasted Plover. Tullu Dimtu at 4377 m is the second highest mountain in Ethiopia and we can drive all the way to the top. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 13 : The day is dedicated birding in Harena forest where at the southern boundary of the park the altitude is 1700 m. The Forest supports a woodland avi-fauna including the African Cuckoo Hawk, Yellow-fronted Parrot and Brown-backed Honey guide. Wildlife includes Klipspringer, Serval, Bushpig, Giant Forest Hog, Grey Duiker, Colobus Monkey, Lion and Leopard; although visitors are less likely to see the latter two and afternoon drive to Goba. Overnight in hotel.
Day 14 : Drive Goba to Addis Ababa via the rift valley lakes. Overnight in hotel.
Day 15 : Departure