Wildlife locations

6 recommended locations. Species listed below are just a selection of those you may see.

Awash National Park

Located in the Rift Valley, Awash National Park is arguably the country’s best wildlife reserve. Consisting of dry acacia scrub and supporting small numbers of larger mammals that have been hunted out elsewhere, it is the stunning scenery and plentiful birdlife which are the big attraction for wildlife enthusiasts.

  • Where: Southern Afar Region
  • Ideal for viewing: Beisa oryx, Hamadryas baboon, Ostrich, Salt’s dik-dik, Soemmering’s gazelle
  • Excellent for: Vehicle safaris, Birdwatching

Bale Mountains National Park

The Bale Mountains form a high altitude plateau, broken by volcanic plugs and peaks. Containing the Harenna Forest and the Sanetti Plateau, pristine lakes and rushing streams carve waterways down gorges into the lowlands, creating an area of beauty, home to the world’s rarest canid; the Ethiopian wolf.

  • Where: South east Ethiopia
  • Ideal for viewing: Ethiopian wolf, Giant mole-rat, Menelik’s bushbuck, Mountain nyala, Rougets’s rail
  • Excellent for: Vehicle safaris, Wolf watching

Lake Langano, Lake Abijatta & Lake Shalla

The freshwaters of Lake Langano are naturally red in colour and the area is rich with wildlife, including ibex, monkeys and baboons. Lake Abijatta and Lake Shalla are very different, but equally as rewarding in terms of wildlife; the birdlife is particularly excellent, and the islands are home to several breeding sites.

  • Where: Oromia Region
  • Ideal for viewing: Greater flamingo, Lesser flamingo, Lesser kestrel, Pallid harrier, White-backed pelican
  • Excellent for: Birdwatching

Simien Mountains

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Simien Mountains are a place of dramatic scenery. Their rugged landscape was formed over a 3000 year erosion period of basalt lava, and despite their altitude they sustain a fascinating range of mammals and birdlife, alongside isolated nomadic and rural communities.

  • Where: Amhara Region
  • Ideal for viewing: Caracal, Ethiopian wolf, Gelada baboon, Lammergeier, Walia ibex
  • Excellent for: Vehicle safaris


Once the capital of Ethiopia, Gondar is one of the country’s richest historical and cultural areas. The city’s architecture is both Islamic and Christian influenced, especially the Castles of Gondar and palaces of the Royal Enclosure.

  • Excellent for: History & culture


Considered by many to be one of the unofficial wonders of the world, Lalibela is one of the holiest sites in the country and world renowned for its 12th Century rock hewn churches.

  • Excellent for: History & culture

Wildlife trips

Ethiopia has some of the continent’s highest mountains, and more rivers than most countries. Studded with flamingo-filled lakes, the Great Rift Valley starts here, the Simien and Bale Mountains are home to the rare and endangered Ethiopian wolf and there is a staggering array of additional wildlife including over 800 bird species.

2 recommended trips. Our trip ideas are offered to inspire you and can be tailored to suit your requirements.

Wolves & Baboons of Ethiopia’s Highlands

Ethiopia offers some wonderful biodiversity and is home to some charismatic wildlife species. The Simien Mountains provide an opportunity to see gelada baboons in close proximity, as well as walia ibex. Continue by flying to the Bale Mountains, home of the Ethiopian wolf and an array of bird life.

  • When to go: Jan-Jul, Sep-Dec
  • Duration inc. flights: 12 days
  • Price inc. flights: From £3,895 pp
  • Trip type: Tailor-made trip idea

Ethiopian Wildlife Extravaganza

This wonderful introduction to Ethiopia will take you to each of the country’s major cultural highlights and provide you with the chance to see superb wildlife, such as gelada baboon, Menelik’s bushbuck, mountain nyala and one of the world’s rarest mammals - the Ethiopian wolf - all in stunning scenery.

  • When to go: Jan-Jul, Sep-Dec
  • Duration inc. flights: 12 days
  • Price inc. flights: From £3,195 pp
  • Trip type: Tailor-made trip idea

When to go

Best visited during the dry season, October to March. April’s short rains are rarely enough to spoil a trip. May is very humid and avoid the main rains between June and September.


  • Long dry season

    Sep to Feb: Winter months are colder in the highlands, but the general climate is drier
  • Short rains

    Mar to Apr: Much of Ethiopia experiences heavy rainfall, but travel remains possible to most locations
  • Short dry season

    May to May: May is the hottest month
  • Long rains

    Jun to Aug: Rainfall is at its heaviest and thunderstorms often occur

Wildlife events

  • Sep to Oct: Best time to visit as country is green and wild flowers are in bloom
  • Nov to Mar: Resident bird species are supplemented by Palearctic migrants



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