Pride of Ethiopia
Sandip Hor visits Addis Abba
The only country in Africa never colonised, Ethiopia teems with a rich history and culture, a broad sample of which can be sensed when spending time in its busting capital Addis Abba the getaway city to a land full of treasures.
Nestled at 2500m above the sea-level, Addis as often referred lovingly, is the third highest capital city in the world after La Paz in Bolivia and Quito in Ecuador both in South America.
Home to 5 million friendly Ethiopians, this metropolis founded in 1886 by Emperor Menelik II, is sewed with avenues lined with old and new buildings and flowering Jacaranda trees.
Christianity being the nation’s dominant religion Addis Abba is powdered with several cathedrals and churches, their ensemble being a major attraction of the city. Unquestionably the most visited is the Holy Trinity Cathedral famous for its intricate exterior and interior design. It’s also the final resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie regarded as the father of modern Ethiopia.
However the capital’s most iconic attraction is the National Museum which is the home of Lucy- a partial skeleton of a female body estimated it to be 3.2 million years old. This exhibit testifies to the world why Africa is deemed as the cradle of humanity.
The best way to reach Addis Abba is by flying Ethiopian Airlines - one of Africa’s oldest airlines in operation since 1946. A Star Alliance member, the national airline fully owned by the Ethiopian Government operates a modern fleet and flies to more than 125 destinations in 5 continents including several in Asia.
A convenient option of reaching there from any Australian city is by taking the direct flight from Singapore in one of their wide-bodied Boeing 787 aircrafts configured with Cloud Nine Business Class and Economy Class arrangements.
Providing adequate space, comfort and style that make flying a pleasure, Cloud Nine seats transform into fully-flat beds for a good night’s sleep. Economy class seats are in 3-3-3 layout. Entertainment is provided via personal monitors in Cloud Nine and individual seat back monitors in Economy. The airline’s frequent flyer program is called ShebaMiles which provides award tickets, upgrades to business class, access to all Star Alliance member airline executive lounges, additional free baggage allowance and many other privileges for their accumulated mileages.
The meals including beverages provided in both classes are of a good standard. The Singapore to Addis Abba flight which departs around 2am in the morning includes a hot light meal followed by a hot breakfast before arriving. Menu in the business class includes items like Deep Fried Chicken Thigh with Lemon Sauce, Egg Fried Rice and Sautéed Broccoli or Stir Fried Beef with Egg Noodles and Sautéed Broccoli as main dishes.
It’s a good choice to fly with Ethiopian Airlines to travel to Ethiopia and to 62 other destinations in Africa. Ethiopians are very proud of their heritage and their airline too which for the third consecutive year received the Best Airline in Africa award from Skytrax in 2019.
Words and Images: Sandip Hor
Getting there – Ethiopian Airlines (www.ethiopianairlines.com)
Addis Accommodation – Jupiter Hotel www.jupiterinternationalhotel.com
Local Tour Operator – Dinknesh Ethiopia Tours www.dinkneshethiopiatour.com
Currency – Ethiopian Birr ETB (1 USD = 29 ETB)
Visa – Available on arrival