Explore the hottest place on earth, if you dare!
Day 1: Mekele – Hamede Ela
Our adventure begins in the northern city of Mekele, capital of the Tigray region. We’ll take our trusty 4×4 and drive to Hamede Ela, via Berhale, a small town where camels stop on their way to the north. We’re headed for one of the world’s most inhospitable places, so don’t forget your sense of adventure. But the amazing views are sure to be worth it. We’ll camp overnight on traditional open-air beds at Hamede Ela.
Day 2: Hamede Ela – Dodom
We’ll be early risers today, making a start after our breakfast just after sunrise. We’ll drive 80 km to reach Askoma at the base of New Erta Ale. On the way, we’ll pass through a diverse landscape consisting of solidified lava, rocks, sand and sometimes an oasis with palm trees. Once we reach Askoma, we’ll trek for around 4 hours to New Erta Ale. Camels will accompany us, to carry the camping gear and our food. We’ll spend the night by the rim of the volcano, while the lava bubbles away below us. New Erta Ale is commonly considered one of Ethiopia’s intriguing natural attractions, and as such it’s a must-see.
Day 3: Volcano views and Lake Afdera
Another early morning today, getting up at sunrise to wander around the pits and craters. Shortly after, we’ll depart camp and head back to Askoma for breakfast. Next, we’ll drive to Lake Afdera, a salt water lake located more than 100 metres below sea level. The stunning landscape is perfect for taking photos, and we’ll also visit the salt flats and watch the local Afar people extracting salt. Then we’ll head back to Hamad Ela, where we’ll spend another night camping.
Day 4: Ragad – Hamede Ela – Mekele
On our last day, we’ll take a morning driving tour to Ragad (Asebo), a salt mining town. Then we’ll drive to Dallol to see the volcanic landscapes and camel caravans. Finally, we’ll drive back to Hamedela and continue back to Mekele, where our trip ends.
For more information about the Danakil Depression tour, or other guided tours, please contact me.