Great Hornbill, Ethiopia endemic bird
Kingfisher Bird watching, Rift Valley, Ethiopia
Bird watching, Rift Valley lakes, Ethiopia
Bird watching, Rift Valley lakes, Ethiopia
Bird watching, Rift Valley lakes, Ethiopia
Bird watching, Rift Valley lakes, Ethiopia
Bird watching,Ethiopia
Bird watching, Ethiopia
Awash River in Awash National Park East Ethiopia
Bird watching, Rift Valley lakes, Ethiopia
Bird Watching in Ethiopia
Kingfisher Bird watching Rift Valley, Ethiopia
Pelican Bird watching in Chamo lake, Rift Valley, South Ethiopia
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Great Hornbill

20 days / 19 nights


Standard 3* Hotel, Camping or Lodge


Breakfast, lunch and dinner included unless otherwise mentioned

Individual, start from 2 people

Price on request

Departure every week, on request – best period September to February

Tour code BW01

or call + 33 6 60 39 02 19 (Europe)
or call + 251 911 657 576 / 166 717 (Addis)

or let’s arrange a tailor-made tour for you, based on your own requirements.

Tour Overview

Ethiopia, the Ornithological Paradise, is known for an impressive number of species of birds, such as waterfowland wading birds, a large suite of song bird, game birds, raptors, nighthaws and swifts.

You will find in Ethiopia 850 birds species and among these species, 16 are considered as endemics.

Most of bird watching itineraries are located in the South and the East parts of the Country. You will visit : Ankober, Awash National Park, Rift Valley lakes and Bale Mountains.

Highlights :

  • Ankober
  • Bilen
  • Awash
  • Bale Mountains
  • Sof Omar
  • Negele
  • Yabello
  • Awash
  • Woliso
  • Gibe Gorge

The proposal trip will take a minimum of 3 weeks but we can organize a 10 days trip. You will see during the 10 days trip most of endemic birds and other bird species.

The best season for birdwatching is from the beginning of September up to February. Between November and February, migrants birds raise the bird population and widen species as well.

Day by day

Day 1. Addis Ababa

Arrive at Addis Ababa, Bole International Airport, and transfer to the Hotel. If possible city tour (depending on the time arrival of your flight). If you arrive early morning, your first visit in Addis Ababa will be the National Museum. It houses numerous antiquarian relics and archaeological artifacts (most famous exhibit is the 3.5 million year old skeleton of Lucy).

Then you will continue to visit Mount Entoto (3 200 m above sea level. The Church of St Mary (1885) and Emperor Menelik II Palace. The Entoto Museum, with its historical exhibits is well worth a visit. Lunch at Restaurant.

After lunch you will visit Trinity Cathedral. It was constructed by Emperor Haile Selassie in 1947 (ornamented with carvings and mosaic and other artistic works such as paintings of saints and the apostles on the stained glass). You will then visit Merkato, the largest open market in Africa.

In the evening, you will have dinner at the hotel or external restaurant and you will rest.

O/ N in Hotel.

Day 2. Addis Ababa – Debre Behran (B-L-D)

Drive from Addis Ababa to Debre Libanos, crossing the river Sululta, stopping at the Jemma River Gorge before proceeding to Debre Libanos, an important monastic and religious center from 700 years.

Many endemic birds can be seen in the area : the White-winged Flufftail, Rouget’s Rail, Pallid Harrier, Great Snipe, Harwood’s Francolin, 6 Sudan-Guinea biome species and 6 Somali- Massai Biome, Vinaceous Dove, Foxy Cist cola, Speckle fronted weaver, lesser Blue- eared Glossy Starling and Black faced Fire finch. Drive to Debre Behran.

O/ N in Hotel.

Day 3. Debre Behran – Ankober (B-L-D)

Morning short walk in  Jemma and Jara valley, P.M drive to Debre Berhan.

O/N in Lodge or Hotel.

Day 4. Ankober (B-L-D)

Morning Ankober mountain range, this site holds the known population of the Ethiopian endemic and restricted- range Ankober Serin.

Afternoon Drive from Debre Berhan to Bilen Lodge, on the way Aliyu Amba -Dulecha.

The site is particularly important as a site for Yellow throated Serin, an Ethiopian endemic, which is both restricted range and Globally Threatened.

This site at least 15 Somali- Masai biome species, and six Highland biome species, as well as various other lesser-known species, such as Chestnut- crowned Sparrow- weaver. Sombre Chat and Pale rock-sparrow.

O/N in Lodge or Hotel.

Day 5.  Ankober – Bilen  (B-L-D)

Morning drive from Ankober to Bilen. Afternoon game drive around Bilen Lodge to see birds.

Belen Bilen lodge construct targeting bird watching groups and stop for desert expedition. It is good place to experience the semi nomad life style of the Afar people plus the natural hot spring makes the place write place to stay in the middle of the tour to relax and change your mind Belen.

Over 440 species of bird have been recorded in this area including rare species such as yellow Throated Serin, Sombre Chat, and Arabian Bustard etc.

O/N Bilen Lodge.

Day 6. Bilen – Awash (B-L-D)

Drive from Bilen Lodge to Awash National Park. The park area is an important natural landscape of the country.  The altitudinal range is from 750 m asl in the Awash River gorge to 2 007 m asl at the top of mount Fantalle Semi dormant volcano.

Major topographic features of the park are the Awash River with its canyon and falls, the lava flows, the Filwoha and the surrounding plains.

The park and its surroundings are very important for birds: the total number of species recorded 460 and now believes for palaearctic migrants.

The park has an interesting complement of large land birds ostrich, secretary bird, Kori and Arabian Bustards. Around 50 birds of prey and vultures, particularly interesting species are Bat Hawk, various snake-eagles and Imperial Eagles.  It is important breeding place for Rupell’s griffon vulture, Fox kestrel and Carmine Bee eater.

O/N Camping or  Awash Lodge

Day 7. Awash (B-L-D)

Game drive in the park; Awash National park has over 350 species of bird that have been recorded in this Savannah grassland and you will spot birds like: Ruppell¨s Vulture, Black – billed -Chat, Boran Cisticola, Scarlet-Chested & Shining Sunbird, Tawny Pipit,Yellow- throated Serin (Endemic), Carmine bee-eater, Lilac-Breasted & Abyssinian Roller, Arabian Bustard, and Great Grey Shrikes.

O/N Camping or Lodge

Day 8. Awash – Bale Mountains (B-L-D)

Drive from Awash National Park to Bale Mountain National Park to the Bale Mountains Goba.

O/N  Wabi Shebele Hotel or Bale Mountains Lodge

Day 9. Bale Mountains (B-L-D)

The Bale Mountain National park is the largest extent of protected Afro-alpine habitat on the African continent.

It also includes the Harenna Fores1 and the largest intact block of forest left in the country.

The mountain rise from the surrounding plateau at about 2,500 m asl to the 4,377m asl on the top of the Sanetti Pleatu Tullu Deemtu peak.

Regarding birds Bale Mountain National park is an important Bird Areas of immense importance for seven globally threatened species Occur: the vulnerable Greater Spotted Eagle, Imperial Eagle, Lesser Kestrel, and wattled Crane, The near threatened Pallid Harrier, Rouget’s Rail, and Abyssinian Long Claw; 42 highland biome species, 88 percent of the Ethiopia’s highland biome assemblage, more than 265 species. Including 6 of the16 species endemic to Ethiopia: Spot breasted Plover, Yellow- fronted Parrot, Abyssinian Wood pecker, Abyssinian Long Claw, Abyssinian Catbird, and Black Siskin.

This day A.M around Disho the head Quarter of the park. P.M Sanetti plateau.

O/ N Wabi Shebele Hotel or Bale Mountains Lodge.

Day 10. Bale – Sof Omar Cave – Bale  (B-L-D)

Excursion Trip to Sof Omar Cave. Sof Omar is Ethiopia’s longest cave system with a total length of over 15 km of passages. The cave takes the Weyb through a limestone block. This site is important for globally threatened and endemic Ethiopia Salvadori’s Seedeater and 17 Somali -Masai biome species including Fischer’s Starling.

O/N Goba Wabishebele Hotel or Bale Mountains Lodge.

Drive from Awash National Park to Bale Mountain National Park to the Bale Mountains Goba.

O/N  Wabi Shebele Hotel or Bale Mountains Lodge.

Day 11.  Bale Mountains – Negele (B-L-D)

Morning visit Sanetti plateau with his beautiful red fox. Afternoon drive from Bale Mountains to Negele. On the way, visit  Genale River.

This site is important for three globally threatened and near threatened birds: Prince Ruspoli’s Turaco, White winged Dove, Jubaland weaver. And 16 other Somali-Masai biome species. Ovambo Sparrowhawk is also known from this site.

O/N in Hotel

Day 12.  Negele – Mankubsa – Welanso – Negele (B-L-D)

Excursion Trip to Mankubsa Welanso Forest and Liben plains and Negele wood Land. These sites are important for Liben Plains and Negele wood lands is the only known locality for Globally Threatened, restricted- range and endemic to Ethiopia Sidamo Long – Clawed Lark. And other birds including Somali Short-toed Lark, Tiny Cisticola and Heuglin’s Bustard, Hunter’s Sunbird, Golden pipit, pygmy Batis, and Red -naped Bush -Shrike, White crowned starling andRufous Sparrow.

The site is also known location for the uncommon Coqui Francolin. Mankubsa – Welenso Forest is important for globally threatened species Prince Ruspoli’s Turaco, Salvadori’s Seedeater. And other species Somali Short -toed Lark, Boran Cisticola, Banded Parisoma and Somali Long billed Crombec and red Chested Sunbird.

O/N in Hotel.

Day 13. Negele – Yabello (B-L-D)

Drive from Negele to Yabello.

O/N Yabello  Motel.

Day 14. Yabello  (B-L-D)

Excursion to Dawa-wachile and Arero forest Negele. These two sites also important for Somali- Masai species, Interesting birds including most of the Somali – Masai birds you have see in Day 14 and 15 and other birds: Pringle’sPuffback, Abyssinian Grosbeak Canary Bare eyed Thrush last days. O/N Yabello  Motel.

Drive from Negele to Bogol Manyo. This site is important for 1 globally threatened species Degodi Lark, Near threatened White -Winged Dove, Somali Short -billed Crombec and 2 restricted -range Species White winged Dove, Degodi Lark, Jubaland Weaver. A number of other restricted- range Somali – Masai biome species are also found in the site area including Somali Bee eater, scaly Chatterer, Golden Pipit and smaller Black – Bellied Sunbird. White-Headed Moosebird, Blue-Capped Cordon Bleu and Fischer’s Starling are all known.

O/N in Yabello Motel

Day 15. Yabello (B-L-D)

Yabello Sanctuary and Elsod Creator Lake. In the sanctuary and around Yabello town is for two Globally Threatened and endemics White-tailed swallow and Abyssinian Bush Crow, which belong to the southern Ethiopia Highlands endemic Bird area. In addition, it holds at least 62 species belonging to the Somali- Masai Biome.

O/N Yabello Motel

Day 16. Yabello – Awasa (B-L-D)

Drive from Yabello to Awasa: bird watching along Awasa lake and source of Tikur Waha river and wood land north east of Lake Awasa. Lake Awasa is rich phytoplankton from which over 100 species have been identified. Around 60 percent are green algae and 30 percent blue greens.

It is the best of all Ethiopian lakes possible to see ” significant numbers” of water bird species occur, particularly white-breasted Cormorant, white -faced whistling Duck, spur-winged Goose, Red Knobbed coot. Other species of interest at Awasa include pygmy Goose, Saddlebill Stork, Brown Snake Eagle, Grey Kestrel, and Green backed honey guide, Blue Headed Coucal, spotted Creeper and African Fire finch.

O/ N in Hailé Resort or Lewi Resort.

Day 17. Awasa (B-L-D)

A.M Abyata Shalla bird sanctuary. Over 400 species were recorded this great diversity is due to a landscape which combines dry savannah woodland with high productive wetland. The park is positioned in one pof the narrowest parts of the great Rift Valley which is a major fly way for both palaearctic and African migrants, particularly raptors, flamingos and other water birds. One endemic and five species restricted to the Highland biome have been recorded.

O/N Savannah Resort or African Vacation  Club around Langano lake.

Day 18. Woliso (B-L-D)

Drive from Langano to Woliso, on the way Lake Zeway, Koka Dam Green Lake and Deberezait Creator lakes. Some of the species these sights are holding is Great white Pelican, Marabou Stork, Fuyluvous Whistling Duck and white- faced headed Gull, Black-headed Gull; Grey headed Gull, Whiskered Tern, and white winged black tern, white breasted cormorant and reed Cormorant. Important birds globally threatened species and near threatened like Ferruginous Duck, pallid Harrier, lesser flamingo and Imperial Eagle. Green Lake, Lake Zeway and Lake langano. Some of the species these sights are holding is Great white Pelican, Marabou Stork, Fuyluvous Whistling Duck and white- faced headed Gull, Black-headed Gull; Grey headed Gull, Whiskered Tern, and white winged black tern, white breasted cormorant and reed Cormorant.

O/N in Negash Lodge.

Day 19. Woliso – Gibe Gorge – Woliso  (B-L-D)

Early the morning, we will  leave our hotel to reach Gibe Sheleko National Park. Gibe Sheleko National Park is located in the western part of Ethiopia, 175 km west of Addis Ababa. It was established in 2001. The park has a spectacular scenery: it follows the Gibe river. The park contains an important number of bird species and wild animals as : Black Face Fired Finch, Abyssinian Wax Bill, Egyptian Plover, Paradise Waydah, Red-Billed Pytillia and many other species. After enjoying the beautiful scenery and the fascinating birdlife, we will drive back to our hotel.

O/N in Negash Lodge.

Day 20. Woliso – Addis Ababa (B-L-D)

Return to Addis Ababa and arrival in the afternoon. Free time for shopping, having a walk or further visits of sights. In the evening traditional farewell-dinner with presentations of traditional dances.

End of the tour. Departure.

Price and conditions

Included in the tour package : 

  • Overnight accommodations in hotels as indicated (or comparable standard).
  • For the camping comfortable tents and all necessary equipment is provided
  • Boarding as indicated (B= Breakfast/ L=Lunch/ D= Dinner)
  • Professional English-French German Italian Japan speaking guide
  • All excursions and transports as indicated
  • Boat excursions as indicated
  • Entrance fees for all sights and visits as indicated
  • Photos
  • Soft drinks and water

Services not included : 

  • International & internal flights
  • Visa fees
  • Not indicated meals
  • No alcoholic drink
  • Video camera- fees
  • Not mentioned visits and excursions

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Tour : Bird Watching Long trip program - please let us know your requirements !

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