is one of the most inhospitable regions of the world but is nonetheless spectacular and full of eye-catching colors like sulphur springs
. You pass through a small town of Berhale where the camel caravan stop before they proceed to the northern highlands. En route you see many long camel caravans
coming to the salt mine
and others going out of the Danakil with their salt loaded camels.
Day 1 Mekele-Hamad Ela
Start tour in Mekele, drive to Hamad Ela town via Berhale. The Danakil Depression can be said to 'begin' here. It is one of the most inhospitable regions of the world, but is nonetheless spectacular, full of eye-catching colors of sulphur springs. The desert has several points lying more than 100 meters (328 ft) below sea level. Pass through the town of Berhale where the camel caravans stop before proceeding to the northern highlands. On the way see many long caravans going to the salt mines and others coming out of the Danakil with their salt loaded camels. Campsite at Hamedela.
Day 2 Hamd Ela-Dodom-Erta Ale
We start early, shortly after at 06:30 breakfast continue the tour and drive to Dodom at the base of Erta Ale volcano. This may be one of the worst road in the world. The 80 km distance may take about 6 hrs passing through changing landscape of solidified lava, rock, sand and the occasional palm lined oasis. You pass several small hamlets scattered here and there in this desert land before reaching Dodom. You will trek from Dodom to Erta Ale which takes about 3 hrs. Early dinner around 17:00 and trek up to Ert Ale at 20:00. Camels transport all the camping materials and some food, sleeping materials, mattresses and water, to the rim of the volcano, where we spend the night watching the dramatic action of the boiling lava. Erta Ale ranks one of the most alluring and physically challenging natural attractions anywhere in Ethiopia. It is a shield volcano with a base diameter of 30 km and 1 km square caldera at its summit. Erta Ale contains the world’s only permanent lava lake and you will spend an unforgettable night on the top of the mountain.
Day 3 Erta Ale-Dodom-Hamad Ela
Get up at sunrise to walk around pits and craters. The main pit-crater 200m deep and 350m across, is sub-circular and three storey. You will leave around 7:00 to head back to Dodom for breakfast. You will reach latest at 10:30 am at the camp and after some time of relax you will drive on to Hamad Ela, a village with a total population about 500 people. Overnight camping at Hamed Ela.
Day 4 Ragad-Dallol-Mekele
Morning driving to Ragad (Asebo), the place where salt is mined. Observe breaking of the salt, cutting into rectangular pieces & loading on camels. Drive to Dallol & visit the landscape formed by volcanic activity, Dallol, Lake Assal, camel caravans. Excursion to Dallol (116 meter below sea level, one of the lowest places in the world) colorful salts mining, Lake Assal, follow up camel caravans and walk with the Afar people. Drive back to Hamedela & Mekele.