Omo Valley

“the unique wilderness”

    OverviewItneraryDates & RatesImage

    Isolated for millennia from the rest of the world, the beautiful Omo Valley is home to an exciting mix of many small and distinctive tribal groups. Amongst others, we find the Karo, the Mursi and the Hamer — all of whom have retained their own unique customs and traditions. Lifestyles are as varied as the tribes themselves. Lacking any material culture and artifacts common to other cultures, these tribes find unique ways in which to express their artistic impulses. Both the Surma and the Karo, for example, are experts at body painting, using clays and locally available vegetable pigments to trace fantastic patterns on each other's faces, chests, arms, and legs. These designs are created purely for fun and aesthetic effect, each artist vying to outdo the others. You will witness age-old customs and rituals, learning of the symbolism that remains an integral part of everyday life. 


    You can book this tour on any date as an individual journey.


    Trip Highlights


    Depending on the category of hotel you booked on this trip, you will be staying in either a 3- or 4-star hotel in Addis Ababa, and on the rest of the trip to the Historic Route, you will be staying in high-quality hotels or in the best available tourist-standard hotels, lodges, and resorts, which are selected and inspected by our team regularly.

    Tour Guide

    This tour will be lead by our experienced A-rated, friendly cultural tour guides who have lead many tours to the Historic Route of Ethiopia and who know the history, culture, nature, and wildlife well. Your guide also will check if there is a colorful market in the area to see. 

    Our Drivers

    Our drivers are well trained and well travelled in the area. They know all the terrain and the valleys you will be traveling to. They always make sure you are comfortable and safe. They have been rated excellent by many travelers who have been on the road with them for long periods of time.


    On this cultural tour to the Historic Route of Ethiopia you will be traveling primarily by coaster bus. We have well-maintained buses in excellent condition suitable for the road condition you will be traveling on. All our vehicles have air conditioning and seat belts.

    Note: On this trip, there will be a domestic flight from Axum to Lalibela and then to Addis Ababa. The domestic flight has to be arranged separately.

    Day 1:  Arrive Addis Ababa


    Arrive in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Welcome to Ethiopia! Upon arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, you will met by your tour guide and driver and transfered to the 4-star Jupiter Hotel.


    Addis Ababa, founded in 1886 by Menelik II, is situated at 2,500 meters (8000 ft.) above sea level. It is the 5th highest capital city in the world. The city enjoys an excellent climate year-round, with an average temperature of 25C (77F). Addis Ababa is a pleasant city with wide avenues of jacarandas, interesting museums, and one of the largest open-air markets in Africa, known as the "Mercato".


    You have a half-day tour and visit the National Museum (to see "Lucy"), one of the churches in Addis Ababa, the Mercato, and enjoy the view from Entoto Mountain.


    Overnight: Hotel Jupiter Bole


    Day 2: Addis Ababa, Arbaminch, Tia Stele (B, D)


    In the morning, we will drive south of Addis Ababa through though Butajira and further south to Tiya, where you will see the southern-most example of a peculiar type of engraved, standing stele that stretch across parts of southern Ethiopia. These steles are believed to have been erected between the 12th and 14th centuries and are almost certainly grave markers. Recent excavations at Tiya have revealed the remains of young people of both sexes, aged between 18–30 and buried in fetal positions. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the stele field at Tiya today comprises more than 45 stones of up to 2m.


    After lunch, we will continue driving to Arba Minch on the way visiting the different small villages of Welyita at Sodo and Alaba at Tembaro.


    Overnight: Paradise Lodge


    Day 3: Arbaminch, Jinka (B, Picnic Lunch, D)


    After an early breakfast, we will drive to Jinka visiting different cultural peoples, including the Konso, and their villages enroute.


    The Konso are famous for their old and unique terracing and unusual engraved wooden statues of Konso grave markers. Between Konso and Jinka, will also have brief stops to visit several different cultural peoples and their villages.


    Overnight: Omo Eco, Jinka


    Day 4: Jinka, Mago, Mursi, Turmi (B, Picnic Lunch, D)


    After having an early breakfast, we will drive from Jinka to Mursi Village. The Mursi, undoubtedly the most celebrated residents of South Omo, are a distinctive group of pastoralists. The Mursi are best known for their unique item of decoration — lip plates. Women of Mursi wear circular clay plates on their lower lip and the bigger a woman can wear, the greater her value when she gets married. 


    After our visit to the Mursi Village, we will have our picnic lunch in the Mago National Park and drive to Turmi.


    Overnight: Buska Lodge


    Day 5:  Turmi, Omorate (B, Picnic Lunch, D)


    In the cool morning, we will drive to Omorate to visit the Desanech (Geleb) tribal village after crossing the Omo River by boat. The Desanech are nomadic pastoralists found across the western bank of the Omo River south of Lake Turkana very close to the Kenyan boarder.


    In the afternoon, we will drive to Hamer Village. The Hamer, display an elaborate and diverse selection of body decorations. They are also identifiable for their high cheekbones and elaborate custom of beads, cowries, leather, and thick copper necklaces. In the same village, we might enjoy the seasonal cultural activities including the famous Evangadi (Hamer Dancing). 


    Overnight: Buska Lodge


     Day 6: Turmi, Arba Minch (B, D)


    In the morning, we will start driving back to Arba Minch with brief stops to visit different villages including Erbore and Tsemay.


    In the afternoon, we will have a boat cruise on Lake Chamo to see some of the biggest African crocodiles. Hippopotamuses and many beautiful aquatic birds including the lovely Kingfisher and African Fish Eagle are also easily seen.


    Overnight: Paradise Lodge Hotel, Arba Minch


    Day 7: Arba Minch, Addis Ababa, Departure (B, D)


    In the morning, we drive back to Addis Ababa enroute visiting different small towns like Shashemene, where Rastafarian culture lives; Ziway and one of the Great Rift Valley Lakes.


    In the evening, there will be farewell dinner party with a traditional special buffet and local drinks. There will also be a cultural dance show of the different ethnic groups living in the country — the perfect way to end the trip!


    At the end of the farewell dinner, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back home. End of tour.


    Your tour guide will keep the tour flexible in order to include different colourful markets, depending on the dates.


    B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner



    Rates on request

    Rate Includes

    • Roundtrip as per program
    • Transport in minibus or coaster bus with AC
    • All necessary transfers
    • Six nights accommodation in good hotels (4-star in Addis Ababa) in double rooms
    • All meals as stated in the program
    • All entrance fees
    • Boat trip on Lake Chamo
    • English-speaking, qualified national tour guide
    • Farewell dinner (flight schedule permitting)
    • Taxes

    Not Included

    • Visa fees
    • Tips
    • Meals not stated in the program
    • All expenses of a personal nature (drinks, laundry, phone calls, etc.)
    • Domestic flights

    Tour Duration

    The tour duration shown above begins and ends in Addis Ababa. With flights into and out of Addis Ababa, the tour duration may be longer.

    please call: +0251-116-183163 or e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Additional Info

    • Tour Type: Cultural Tour
    • Limited To: 8 Guests
    • Duration: 7 Days
    • Price: on request
    Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours has been operating responsible travel activity and adventure holidays in Ethiopia for more than a decade.Travel to Ethiopia with Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours and discover amazing Ethiopia. We have a wide selection of holiday tour packages including the following: cultural tours for groups and individuals, family holiday options, varied adventure tours and travel packages, photo expeditions, trekking adventure holidays, cultural explorations in the Omo Valley, and photo tours in Ethiopia. We are the local travel specialists and the leading Ethiopian tour operator based in Addis Ababa. Contact us for your holiday in Ethiopia.
    Copyright © 2024 - Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours. All Rights Reserved. Website Developed by Libra Technologies