Addis Ababa is the capital city of Ethiopia. Translated as ‘New Flower’ in the Amharic language, this city is known as the third-highest capital city of the world as it is elevated on the height of 2,400 meters. The capital city wears its heart on the sleeve ever since it was founded by the Ethiopian Emperor Menelik in the year 1892. The capital city feels exactly as the Ethiopian capital should feel. The city boasts some of the most amazing cultural destinations and happens to be a great tourist spot among all the tourists and travelers. Below listed are the top 12 things to do in Addis Ababa.
St. George’s Cathedral and Museum
St. George’s Cathedral and Museum happens to be one of the well-recognized places of worship and icons within the city. This compound is situated on the top of the hill and overlooks the Menelik II square. The cathedral is a famous tourist spot among the people at large. Inside the church, you can walk in a circle around the cathedral and witness some of the most incredible set of paintings that portray scenes from the Bible and Ethiopian history.
National Museum of Ethiopia
The National Museum of Ethiopia is one of the best museums that you will find in the capital city. This facility has become home to a number of amusing pieces and relics of artwork from around the country. Thus, this museum is going to serve as a treat for all those tourists who are highly influenced by history. Inside the museum, you will come across a fantastic collection of archaeology such as statues and precious stelae from Axum. This place is worth a visit.
Lion of Judah Monument
Ethiopia entertains a great ancient history and you can witness the same by visiting the Lion of Judah Monument in this capital city. This particular monument represents the Statue of the lion of Judah and is situated in front of the old Railway Station. The Lion represents the pride and the emperor of Ethiopia. There is another Statue of the Lion of Judah here which is made using black stones. This is one great sight to visit and capture pictures.
Red Terror Martyrs Memorial Museum
This museum is a well laid out museum of the capital city and is incredibly moving in nature. What’s very eccentric about this particular museum of Addis Ababa is that you will come across the display cabinets which are filled with human belongings that are dug out of the mass graves. Some of these skulls and bones are even displayed alongside the photo of the victim and have personal artifacts about them and their death. This place is dedicated to all the martyrs of the country.
Holy Trinity Cathedral
Holy Trinity Cathedral is a massive and ornate cathedral which happens to be the second-most important place of worship in the country after the Old Church of St. Mary of Zion. This place is also celebrated as the final resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie and his wife. You will find their tombs sitting inside the cathedral. The interiors of this cathedral are worth a view. This is a fascinating place for sure along with super impressive exteriors highlighting copper dome, spindly pinnacles, etc.
African Hall was built in the year 1961 by Emperor Haile Selassie. This place happens to be a great tourist attraction of the capital seat. This is the seat of the UN’s Economic Commission for Africa which is also made open for the tourists to explore. You will come across a beautiful Italian-designed building which is very interesting. There are frieze-like motifs representing traditional Ethiopian Shamma borders. It is important to mention that you need to make an appointment to visit this place.
Away from the hustle-bustle of the city is the beautiful Entoto Hill which serves as one of the top tourist destinations of the capital city. This place must be on the itinerary of every tourist. Entoto Hill is located on the mountain top and needless to say, the place is all about the beautiful and picturesque views. You can also check out the vast Eucalyptus Forest, Palace and Menelik, and various sacred churches from here. The breathtaking view is simply a delight.
Awash National Park
Awash National Park happens to be one of the best national parks of the country which spans across the southern tip of the Afar Region. This park is located 225 kilometers east of the capital city and has its southern boundary along the Awash River. There are beautiful sightings of the animals here. The wildlife of this national park includes East African oryx, dik-dik, greater kudus, baboons, warthogs, and many others. You are surely going to enjoy it here if you are a wildlife enthusiast.
Addis Merkato (African Market)
Addis Merkato or the Market of Addis Ababa is the place to be in if you are looking forward to knowing the flavor of the local markets of the city. This market lets you wade into the chaos of the city. Here, you will come across the most eloquent aroma that wafts from the precious incense. The market is usually very crowded and hence it is suggested to take care of all your belongings especially your wallet. This place happens to be the largest market in Africa where you can buy local artifacts, spices, handicrafts, eatables, and many other things.
Medhane Alem Church
Another important place that holds a great religious value among the people of Addis Adaba and happens to be a great tourist spot for all the visitors is the Medhane Alem Church. The meaning of the name of this church is ‘savior of the world’. This happens to be an Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Cathedral in Bole Medhanealem in the capital city. The church is also known to be the second-largest cathedral in the whole of Africa and the largest church in Ethiopia. This is a beautiful church which entertains a great religious significance.
The Ethnological Museum is located at a short distance from the National Museum of Ethiopia within a lush university center. If you have a taste for museums, arts, and history, then this is surely the place to be in. This museum introduces you to some of the major tribes of the country. You can also go through the history and importance of coffee in the Ethiopian culture as a lot of information on the subject is provided here. Spot the impressive collection of beautiful crosses, paintings, and triptychs here.
One of the most sought-after monuments for the tourists in Addis Ababa is the monument of Yekatit 12. This monument commemorates victims of the Italian reprisals following an attempt to kill the Viceroy of Italian East Africa. The monument is located in the center of Sidist Kilo Square, also known as Yekatit 12 Square. This place is often seen crowded by tourists from all around the world who visit here for gathering information about the place and sightseeing.
Just So You Know…
- Addis Adaba is known to be one of the most storied and busy cities in Africa. From its beginnings as the home to the Emperor Menelik II to its crazy traffic and remnants of the wars, Addis Ababa is a must-visit place for sure.
- Addis Ababa is also known to be one of the craziest intersections of the world which operates without any traffic light.
- This city is close to the equator. However, it never gets too hot.
Get Some Culture:
- Although the capital city doesn’t boast any important festivals of its own, it is a great place to catch some national festivals for sure.
Grab A Bite:
- Yod Abyssinia Traditional Restaurant is one of the most reputable places to eat where you can gorge on several dishes representing various nations and nationalities. You can also entertain yourself with amazing performances and live shows here.
- Else Bar and Restaurant is all about offering high-quality Ethiopian fare in an atmosphere that is laid back. From the fast-food to the full-course meals – you can get a variety of meals here.