Ethiopia and Malta 2012
About this blog
I have wanted to go to Ethiopia for a long time. At first the thought of the fabulous churches carved into stone cliffs appealed to me. The unique history of Ethiopia with its connections to early Christianity and the Old Testament Queen of Sheba and the Lost Ark of the Covenant added to the allure. Then finally a book I read on the Blue Nile and the Omo Valley clinched it so here I am.
I went on two two-week tours with Exodus: The Omo Valley that concentrated on photography and the tribes of the Omo Valley and Discover Ethiopia covering the cultural sites of Northern Ethiopia as well as the Blue Nile and Simien Mountains. We spent some time on both trips in Addis Ababa and visiting the hot springs resort at Wondo Genet. I loved the Ethiopian countryside with all the grain crops, cattle and daily life along the roads. I loved the simple thatched homes of the farmers as much as the great architectural achievements of the ancient rock-carved churches. The acacia trees and other flora of the Rift Valley were beautiful as well. I think my most enduring memory of Ethiopia will be of the people walking along the roads to and from their fields and pastures.
After seeing off two groups of fellow-travelers at Addis airport and a month in Ethiopia, I continued on to the Malta. Based in the capital Valletta, I visited various megalithic temple sites, historical areas, cathedrals and churches. Expecting a startling contrast, I was surprised by many similarities: Ethiopia's rock-carved churches and the underground Hypogeum in Malta, the associations with early Christianity with both becoming Christianized in the 300's AD, ....