Memorable trip to Bale Mountains with Armaye Ethiopia Tours
First of all: Visit Ethiopia! It is a very beautiful country (culture, great variety of landscapes) with really nice people, always ready to help. To save time I often took the airplane, which is quite cheap. Based on my route I really recommend: Lalibela churches and landscape, Tigre churches, Gondar, Bahir Dar, Bale Mountains and Addis Ababa. I absolutely wished to visit Bale Mountains, because, in contrary to Simien Mountains, there is a widevariety in animal- and plant life, which are still well preserved. It is really worth a visit. Looking for a good tour operator on the Internet I found Armaye Ethiopia Tours. He answered very quickly to all my concerns in fluent English. I had a very good impression and decided to book a tour with him. I travelled to Ethiopia around mid-January. I did the shorter 3 day-tour going from Dinsho to Sodota, then to Adalay and back to Dinsho. It is quite flat and we walked about 5-6 hours a day. The trek can be easily done, even if you are not too sporty and with sneakers. You can hire an additional horse for children or persons with light walking difficulties.
Around Dinsho I saw many animals like warthogs, bushbucks and Nyalas and other species of gazelles. All the tour long, there is constant change in the landscape with forests, grassland, hills, arid plains and a brocéliande-like forest” with St.John’s Warts. I also saw the famous Ethiopians wolves, all kinds of birds and many rodents. It was breath-taking. On fourth day in the morning, we drove to Sanetti-Plateau: lunar landscape with hawks, Ethiopian wolves and giant Lobelias. We walked to a small lake, which reflected the sky and the landscapes like a mirrorand hosted migratory birds. In the afternoon, I visited Harenna forest: a temperate rain forest, that is home to many different primates. On the trees, impressive hives are hanging. If you like to take walks, I think that is worth to stay a whole day in Harenna Forest.
During the whole trek food was really good and abundant. The price of the tour depends on the number of participants. It is not cheap, but really everything is organised, you will feel safe and find in Armaye an excellent guide who knows a lot and can explain you everything you want to know about the flora, fauna and the culture of Ethiopia! To elaborate the ideal trekking tour for you, it is important to communicate to Armaye your walking abilities and wishes. Armaye, the cook and the horse handlers were all really cordial, patient, competent and trustful. Armaye speaks a really good English, is open-minded, intelligent, knowlegible about flora and fauna and will adapt to all of your wishes.
I really recommend Armaye trekking tours. Some additional advices: Temperature:
In the night, it falls under zero degrees and during the day, you have about 16 degrees Celsius, but the sun is quite strong. Armaye did provide all the camping gear, horses and a horse handler to carry all the equipment and your luggage as well as a cook. He has sleeping bags for high altitude so you won’t freeze during the night. Anyway, take very hot clothes for the night and lighter ones for the day and on the plateau it is windy.