Blogs from Harari Region, Ethiopia, Africa

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Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region January 3rd 2015

Some pics from Harar, a long 9 hr bus ride east of Addis. An Islamic community with Somali influences, with very colorful markets. We stayed in the Old City which has about 40,000 residents surrounded by 1000 yr old wall with 5 gates. Cobblestoned narrow lanes, with no signs, fantastic to waunder, but glad we had Sheriff to guide us. Will post the pics as this second, we have internet.... read more
I love this pic!
Spices at the spice market
Typical street in the walled old city of Harar

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region July 15th 2014

Nakon dugog vremena provedenog na putu moram priznati da sam se pomalo zasitio i da mi je većina novih mjesta počelo izgledati vrlo slično prethodnom. No to nije bio slučaj s Hararom. Harar je većinski muslimanski grad na istoku Etiopije blizu granice beskrajnim ratom opustošene Somalije. Tim više vrijedi spomenuti da je upravo Harar dobitnik UN-ovog priznanja za mir. Naime Harar je jedan od rijetkih lijepih primjera grada u kojem muslimani, pravoslavci i protestanti žive u miru kroz cijelu 700 godišnju povijest. Stari dio Harara je okružen zidom iza kojeg se skriva beskrajan labirint uličica koje vreve šareno odjevenim ljudima i preko stotinu džamija. No još jedna posebnost koja je Harar dovela i na naslovnice velikih svjetskih medija je unikatan suživot ljudi i hijena. Unutar hararskih zidina živi više od 300 hijena, i može se reći ... read more
Hijene
Chichi i Udaser
Taxi

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar February 3rd 2014

3 November, 2012 Seven of us have decided to head east to Harar, flying from Addis to Dire Dawa and then taking a taxi to the bus stop where we got on a minibus for the final leg. We'll catch up with the truck in a few days. It was during the bus journey that the local men on board introduced us to chat; a flowering plant whose leaves are chewed to obtain a mild stimulant effect. They offered us each a couple leaves but for someone like me who has never smoked or taken drugs, I really wasn't interested in chewing some leaves. I did try it but the bitterness was off-putting, as was the hard, leaf-like texture (funny that) and I soon spat them out. A few chewed them for longer but a much ... read more
Hyena Man and his loyal followers!
I never thought I'd be this close to a hyena
Old City marketplace

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar January 23rd 2014

It is with a heavy heart that I begin this blog. I am sitting in Gondar airport waiting for my flight to Addis. After 3 months here, my time here in Gondar is up and now I am off travelling for 10 days before starting my next job in Nairobi. I know that I have moaned a fair amount in this blog but I will really miss this place. My colleagues have been a pleasure to work with. They have looked after me so well and I had a lot of fun at work. The daily problems that they face here make me rethink the things I complain about at home. I am grateful to have been born in such a stable and affluent country with all the opportunities that I have had, never left wanting ... read more
Simien mountains
Simien mountains
Simien mountains

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar January 28th 2013

Waking up and taking another 5am bus to leave Addis Ababa is a struggle that seems to be part of any form of bus travel in Ethiopia. I still haven't figured out what their obsession is with 5 and 6 am bus travel, but it is something I will have to get use to. The night before I ended up meeting some nice guys at a Turkish restaurant (still trying to get my fill of non-Injera food). They ended up being quite wealthy and insisted on buying me more beer and food than I could possible eat or drink. "You are our guest" was the rational. Not really a problem for me as I was becoming a bit paranoid of the costs associated with being in Addis Ababa. After a very hot and very uncomfortable bus ... read more
Looks Like I am Staring It Down
Feeding Them From A Stick in My Mouth
And It Climbed On My Back

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar December 1st 2012

And the blog returns...... So we have now completed the 'northern circuit' which took us up to the border with Eritrea in the north and then returned us to Addis Ababa. The trip took about 20 days and around 80 hours of that was on the bus covering the 2300kms. It was a great trip, highlights included endless, stunning views across the mountains of the central ethiopian highlands (including perilous dirt roads with 500+ metre drops inches from the side of the bus). The chilled town on Bahir Dar on the edge of lake Tana. The castles of Gondor - castles in Africa is pretty unsual. The stelae of Axum (big tall pillar things built by the Axumites) see the pic for what they look like.The unbelievable rock hewn churches of Lalibela where they decided to ... read more
Smiling
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Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar October 26th 2012

After a brief week back in the UK including a weekend in Glasgow we are off on the road again and this time it’s ETHIOPIA! 26th-27th Oct ’12 Addis Ababa A very early 4am wake up and by 5am we were checked in at Teesside Airport, thanks to the above and beyond call of friendship lift from Abi and John! It felt really strange to be setting off from our local airport and knowing we were going to end up in Ethiopia! It was a short flight to Amsterdam and the plane was mainly full of business people and I had to suppress the urge to say we’re not going to Europe, we are off on an adventure to deepest darkest Africa. We had about 3 hours before our onward flight and I was kind of ... read more
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Harar
Harar

Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar April 3rd 2012

After leaving Berbera, we got back into Hargeisa early enough. I had a multi entry visa for Ethiopia, but Jack and Joris had to get new visas. Unfortunately the Ethiopian consulate was closed, so we had to spend another night in Hargeisa, which was fairly uneventful. The next morning the two lads got their visas easy enough and we found a car to take us to the border. We had hoped to reach Harar that evening but we got into Jijiga too late and had to spend the night there. It had only been 5 days, but it was good to be back in Ethiopia and the beers that night went down very well! The next morning we got a minibus to Harar. Harar is considered the 4th holiest Islamic city in the world. The old ... read more
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Africa » Ethiopia » Harari Region » Harar March 24th 2012

It is Friday in Harar. Mike and I walk in the morning, eager to get some exercise having been in the car for so long. We walk purposefully away from the old city and climb a hill. Indian made auto rickshaws splutter past us, up the incline. Barely making progress faster than our legs. The new town in unassuming, but the trees are pretty and the morning smells are pleasant and fresh. At the summit we find the Harar brewery. Hara turns out to be slightly more convoluted than we thought. Numerous guide books tell us, that the Emperor Haile Selassie converted the main mosque on the main square in the walled city into a church, to inform Muslim population that he was in charge. This must have sent a powerful signal to the Muslim community, ... read more
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