Elsewhere, the Great Rift Valley to the south of Addis Ababa is to the nature lover what the northern areas of the country are to the culture vulture.
Slicing southern Ethiopia in half and stretching right down through Kenya, this is a favourite region for the Original Travel team where you'll find stunning lakes, picture perfect landscapes and an abundance of birdlife and wildlife. There are also numerous tribes which have remained largely unaffected by the modern world.
There is a chain of eight lakes that runs south to the Kenyan border starting just an hour or two from Addis. Lake Langano has excellent facilities thanks to a lovely new lodge and is just a stone's throw from the picturesque lakes of Shalla and Abiata, where a myriad of birdlife congregate, among them, greater and lesser flamingo, great white pelicans and white-necked cormorants.
Nech Sar National Park and Lake Chamo
Continuing south, Nech Sar National Park near Arba Minch is where gazelle, zebra, hartebeest and baboons roam freely, making this one of the best places in Ethiopia for wildlife. Nearby, the crocodile infested waters of Lake Chamo are surprisingly popular for boat trips to see the so-called 'Nile crocodile market', where hundreds of crocs gather to sun themselves on the lake's northwest shore.
Omo River Valley
In the Omo River Valley of the southwest are more than 50 tribes and the region is ripe for exploration. From the Mursi people's giant lip plates and the Hamer tribes' bull jumping ceremony to the Dorze people's tall beehive-esque homes, the sheer diversity of the tribes will astound even the most knowledgeable African aficionado.