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Capital: Addis Ababa - The New Flower

The garden city of Addis Ababa, with its trees, flowers and parks, is one of the most beautiful in Africa. The third highest capital in the world has a climate that offers invigorating mountain coolness, pleasantly warmed by its proximity to the equator. Little wonder its founder, Emperor Menelik' II, called it the ‘New Flower’ when he established it in 1887.

The 2,500m high, political and commercial nucleus of the country sprawls across many hills, beneath Mount Entoto, and offers

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Capital: Addis Ababa - The New Flower

The garden city of Addis Ababa, with its trees, flowers and parks, is one of the most beautiful in Africa. The third highest capital in the world has a climate that offers invigorating mountain coolness, pleasantly warmed by its proximity to the equator. Little wonder its founder, Emperor Menelik' II, called it the ‘New Flower’ when he established it in 1887.

The 2,500m high, political and commercial nucleus of the country sprawls across many hills, beneath Mount Entoto, and offers welcoming hospitality and a scene of contrasts with modern buildings and wide boulevards side-by-side with historic churches, palaces, museums, monuments, a myriad of shops, coffee houses and simple huts. Some of the charming wooden balconies of buildings constructed during Menelik’s time suggest an interesting oriental touch.

Addis is now host to many international and regional organizations such as the Africa Union and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa at Africa Hall. It can also boast a state-of-the-art airport which serves as the doorway into a country that has the longest history of freedom in Africa, and to the paradise that is Ethiopia.

History

Ethiopia, the land of the Queen of Saba, the birthplace of the Blue Nile, is regarded as the "Land of Origins". That Ethiopia has a heritage from the beginnings of mankind was underlined when the remains of 'Lucy' dated from 3.5 million years ago, and the 4.4 million year old Homo ramidus afarenis, man's oldest anthropoid ancestor, were uncovered.

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History

Ethiopia, the land of the Queen of Saba, the birthplace of the Blue Nile, is regarded as the "Land of Origins". That Ethiopia has a heritage from the beginnings of mankind was underlined when the remains of 'Lucy' dated from 3.5 million years ago, and the 4.4 million year old Homo ramidus afarenis, man's oldest anthropoid ancestor, were uncovered.

Culture

Ethiopia has a diverse mix of ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. It is a country with more than 80 different ethnic groups each with its own language, culture, custom and tradition. One of the most significant areas of Ethiopian culture is its literature, which is represented predominantly by translations from ancient Greek and Hebrew religious texts into the ancient language Ge'ez, modern Amharic and Tigrigna languages.

Ge'ez is one of the most ancient languages in the world and is

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Culture

Ethiopia has a diverse mix of ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. It is a country with more than 80 different ethnic groups each with its own language, culture, custom and tradition. One of the most significant areas of Ethiopian culture is its literature, which is represented predominantly by translations from ancient Greek and Hebrew religious texts into the ancient language Ge'ez, modern Amharic and Tigrigna languages.

Ge'ez is one of the most ancient languages in the world and is still used today by the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church has its own unique customs and traditions, which have been influenced by Judaism.

The Tigrayans' history and culture is derived from the Aksumite Kingdom tradition and culture whereas the history and culture of the Amhara people is derived from the post Aksumite imperial reign of Menelik II and Haile Selassie.

Food

The Ethiopian national dish is called wat. It is a hot spicy stew accompanied by injera (traditional large spongy pancake made of teff flour and water). Teff is unique to the country and is grown on the Ethiopian highlands. There are many varieties of wat, e.g. chicken, beef, lamb, vegetables, lentils, and ground split peas stewed with hot spice called berbere.

Berbere is made of dried red hot pepper, herbs, spices, dried onions, dried garlic and salt ingredients. Wat is served by

...

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Food

The Ethiopian national dish is called wat. It is a hot spicy stew accompanied by injera (traditional large spongy pancake made of teff flour and water). Teff is unique to the country and is grown on the Ethiopian highlands. There are many varieties of wat, e.g. chicken, beef, lamb, vegetables, lentils, and ground split peas stewed with hot spice called berbere.

Berbere is made of dried red hot pepper, herbs, spices, dried onions, dried garlic and salt ingredients. Wat is served by placing it on top of the injera, the food is eaten with fingers by tearing off a piece of injera and dipping it in the wat.

Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Christians do not eat meat and dairy products (i.e. egg, butter, milk, and cheese) on Wednesdays and Fridays except the 50 days between Easter and Pentecost, the Fast of the Prophets, the fast of Nineveh, Lent, the Fast of the Apostles and the fast of the Holy Virgin Mary. According to the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church belief, the faithful must abstain from eating meat and dairy products to attain forgiveness of sins committed during the year, and undergo a rigorous schedule of prayers and atonement.

Vegetarian meals such as lentils, ground split peas, grains, fruit, varieties of vegetable stew accompanied by injera and/or bread are only eaten during fasting days. Meat and dairy products are only eaten on feasting days i.e. Christmas, Epiphany, Easter and at all other times. Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Christians, Jews and Muslims do not eat pork as it forbidden by their religious beliefs.

Drink

The favorite drink of many Ethiopians is bunna (coffee). Bunna is drunk in Ethiopia in a unique and traditional way known as a "coffee ceremony". First the coffee is roasted, then ground and placed in a Jebena (coffee pot) with boiling water. When ready it is then served to people in little cups, up to three times per ceremony.

Other locally produced beverages are tella (beer made out of grains) and tej (honey wine), which are served and drunk on major religious festivals, Saints

...

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Drink

The favorite drink of many Ethiopians is bunna (coffee). Bunna is drunk in Ethiopia in a unique and traditional way known as a "coffee ceremony". First the coffee is roasted, then ground and placed in a Jebena (coffee pot) with boiling water. When ready it is then served to people in little cups, up to three times per ceremony.

Other locally produced beverages are tella (beer made out of grains) and tej (honey wine), which are served and drunk on major religious festivals, Saints Days and weddings. Tella and tej are also sold by numerous designated commercial houses all over the country.

Religion

The main religions in Ethiopia are Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Paganism. Ethiopia is a predominantly Christian country and the majority of Christians are Orthodox Tewahedo Christians, who belong to the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. There are a minority of Christians who are Roman Catholic or Protestant. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church is headed by a patriarch and is related to the communion of the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Armenian Orthodox Church, the Syrian Orthodox

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Religion

The main religions in Ethiopia are Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Paganism. Ethiopia is a predominantly Christian country and the majority of Christians are Orthodox Tewahedo Christians, who belong to the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. There are a minority of Christians who are Roman Catholic or Protestant. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church is headed by a patriarch and is related to the communion of the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Armenian Orthodox Church, the Syrian Orthodox Church and Malankara Orthodox Church of India and .

Climate

Ethiopia has two main seasons, the dry season from October to May and the rainy season between June and September. In the southwest of the country, the rainy season is from March to May. Temperatures depend on altitude, but the average temperature is about 25°C and in the lower lying areas such as Awash, Omo and Mago National Parks the temperature can be considerably higher.

Language

With its distinctive alphabet, Amharic is the official language. The second official language, English, is understood in most hotels and major towns. Italian, Arabic and French are also widely understood. Eighty-tree indigenous languages are spoken in the country. The most common of these are Orominya, Tigrinya and Somali.

Currency

Ethiopian Birr is the national currency and visitors may bring in as much foreign currency as they wish, which may be changed at authorized banks and hotels. Any excess Birr may be changed back into foreign currency at the airport before departure (keep receipts). Credit cards are not widely accepted, especially outside of Addis. Cash machines are widely available in Addis and in some of the major towns of Ethiopia.