With its dramatic scenery, rich biodiversity and varied network of protected areas, Ethiopia is a nature-lovers paradise, and well-known for its high number of endemics (species found nowhere else in the world).

Although lions, elephants, giraffes and other typical safari animals are present, Ethiopia’s greatest claim to fame as a wildlife destination is as the sole home of such unique species as the Ethiopian wolf (the world’s rarest dog), the Walia ibex (Africa’s only indigenous goat) and the bizarre grass-eating gelada baboon.

Ethiopia is a land of dramatic landscapes, whose varied scenic highlights range from the jagged peaks of the Simien Mountains and chasmic Blue Nile Gorge to the active lava lakes of the Danakil and bare sandstone cliffs of eastern Tigray.

Ethiopia is one of Africa’s top birding destinations. The national checklist of 860 species includes 18 found nowhere else in the world, and several dozen regional endemics whose range only otherwise extends into Eritrea, Somalia or South Sudan.

Coffee Forest Tours into the rainforests that swathe Ethiopia’s western highlands bring the visitor to the original home of coffee and the site of the Mother Coffee Tree, the oldest living plant of its type anywhere in the world.

Far from being the desert of western myth, Ethiopia supports a wealth of lakes, rivers and other aquatic habitats, ranging from Lake Tana, the primary source of the Blue Nile, to the lovely crater lakes around Bishoftu, only 50km from Addis Ababa.