Planning a trip to south omo valley Ethiopia?
Here’s some basic info that we thought helpful.
The Ethiopia eVisa is an electronic travel authorization which allows visitors to enter the country. It is available to citizens of all countries and it has eliminated the need to physically go to an embassy or consulate or queue at the border for a visa. The application is completed online and only takes a matter of minutes.
What is the Ethiopian eVisa?
The Ethiopian Online Visa was launched to accelerate the process of obtaining a visa for Ethiopia. Citizens from all countries can quickly complete the online application form by answering a series of basic questions.
Applications are normally processed within 24 hours though on rare occasions the process can take up to three (3) days. Once approved the eVisa is sent to the applicant by email.
Travelers can present their eVisa, along with their passport, to the Ethiopian border authorities at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport to gain entry. The electronic visa for Ethiopia is a single-entry visa and applicants have the choice of either a 30-day or 90-day visa.
For more info about the online visa for Ethiopia; www.ethiopiaonlinevisa.com
Ethiopia is a cash economy. All the banks accept International Credit/payment cards like AmericanExpress, Mastercard and Visa card. You can withdraw birr from the ATMs withdraw only 4,000 birr in one time (about $200 USD) per transaction and can withdraw up to 10,000 birr from each ATM machine, if you have the patience to do it three transactions, and if there's enough money in the machine.
South omo valley is not above the malaria line. Therefore, antimalarials are necessary.
It is best to travel with all of the medicines you need including sun cream.You can buy some basic medications like antibiotics over the counter at pharmacies.
Unless you are planning to visit Surma/Suri tribe anytime is a good time for visiting south east omo valley one thing I can guarantee is that it will rain and it will be hot just prepare for both. The rain could last for half an hour to an hour depending on where you are and the altitude so do not let rain be a factor for not coming in a period which suits you.
If you are planning to fly throughout Ethiopia, you will receive significant discounts on domestic flights if you fly in to Ethiopia using Ethiopian Airlines. In most cases, it is best to book your domestic tickets at an Ethiopian Airlines office once you arrive in Ethiopia.
To start the tour with us you can fly from to Arba Minch and or Jinka BCO airport.
A lot of people ask me what will we eat. Food is the last thing you need to worry about. All along the way there are restaurants made keeping the Western tourist in mind which serve good and hygienic food including western breakfast. Ethiopia is a country with rich natural resources. My clients have always told me that the fruits here taste amazing and out of the world. We get fruits all along the way. Even in the tribal area. The Ethiopian cuisine is amongst the most delicious cuisines around the world. I promise you, there will be no complain about food. There are a lot of good places were we can get food. If you still think it can be an issue we can buy or you can get canned food for the journey. I will provide you with fire if you feel like cooking. My clients bring canned food but end up eating the local food! I am sure you will fall in love with the food here.
At Jinka we will stay at a level of accommodation that meets your needs. If access to internet is important please let us know so we can take you to a hotel with wifi. At times internet is intermittent even in places with power and after Jinka you will be without internet for the most part. Beyond Jinka, we will be staying in my tents and sleeping bags. The locations of our camp sites are out of the world. We will be staying at few of the most exotic location you would ever wake up to!
Electricity is not a problem until we leave Jinka. After Jinka, we might find electricity in some locations but I recommend you to get extra batteries and car chargers. A simple double USB charger for a car will keep your camera batteries charged. Don't let your batteries die in Omo Valley!
There are banks in Addis Ababa and Arbaminch where you can convert the currencies. So don't stress about converting the currencies before you come here. Ethiopia is a very tourist friendly and a safe country. I don't think you need to worry about people stealing and robbing you but at the same time its always important to be smart and careful.
We get packed mineral water all along the way. We will buy loads of water when we start our journey. This is the one thing I ask my tourist to be careful about. I recommend that you only drink water from the packed bottles. There are solar kiosks in some locations where we can purchase cold water and beverages as well.
Things to carry:
SUN BLOCK! Be prepared. Though we can often find sunblock,it is not res-stocked on shelves in Ethiopia like it is in your land.
Mosquito repellent sprays and ointments (seasonal)
Swiss Knife or a pocket tool kit
Canned food (If you need)
Shoes and sandals
Wide brimmed hats are recommended
If you are a photographer or a researcher, I understand that you will have a lot of equipment. I have a car which will carry everything you bring.