National Parks of Ethiopia

Mount Abune Yosef Community Conservation Area.

Mount Abune Yosef is located in the Lasta district of North Wollo Zone, between 12°8′7″N and 39°15′7″E.

This isolated mountain reaches up to 4,260m. Approximately it is 50 km (31 miles) far from lalibela town and has suitable wolf and bird habitats.

The climate is moist and cold at night with a wet season from June to October, and a dry season from November to May.

The average annual rainfall is 2,000 mm and the mean annual temperature ranges between 7.5 and 11 °C.

It has three main viewpoint places which are Small Zegit, Big Zegit and Reim Gedele.

The landscape is open and dominated by grasslands and heathlands, with steep slopes covered by rock and shallow soils, and valleys and depressions, with deep black soils, sustaining an important green biomass. The mosaic of Afroalpine vegetation types includes ‘guassa’ rasslands, giant lobelias (Lobelia rhyncopetalum ), Euryops bushes locally known as ‘chifra ’, ‘kirshiba, ’ or ‘ charranfe’, and remnant patches of Erica forests.

There are 43 species of mammals, including seven Ethiopian endemics, and more than 200 species of birds, of which 16 are endemic, making it the second most important bird area in the country.

Awash National Park.

Awash National Park covers 756 sq km straddling the border of Shewa and Arsi regions in Ethiopia. It situated 211 km to the east of Addis Ababa. The park is named after the Awash River, one of the main rivers of Ethiopia, which forms part of the park’s southern boundary. In the middle of the park is the dormant Fantale volcano, which reaches a height of 2,007 m. Another interesting physical feature is the Filwoha hot springs, which are famous for their beautiful blue colour. These springs are very hot, reaching temperatures of 36°c. The park has a wide variety of birds, including Carmine Bee-Eaters, Hoopoes, Fish Eagles and Ostrich. The animals species include Oryx, Kudu, Waterbuck, Hartebeest and Lion.

Bale National Park.

Four hundred Kilometres to the south-east of Addis Ababa is the Bale Mountains National Park. It is 2,470 sq km in area and contains Tulu Deemtu (4,377 m), Which is the highest peak in Southern Ethiopia. The northern part of the park is high-plateau covered by Savannah, whilst to the south of the Harenna Escarpment, which runs from east to west access the park, there is a large forested area. The park was established to protect two important animal species found only in Ethiopia – The mountain Nyala (a type of Antelope) and the Simien Fox, which is in fact a Kackal. Also to be seen are Antelope Warthog and Baboon. The park’s bird population includes the Wattled Ibis, and the Black-winged Lovebirds. Wattled Cranes are often seen on the high plateau in the rainy season.

Gambella National Park.

Located 850 km west of Addis Ababa near the Sudanese border in Illubabor region, Gambella is one of Ethiopia’s least-developed national parks, yet it covers an area of 5,060 sq km. The terrain includes open woodland, Savannah and swamp. Many of park’s 41 species of mammals are also found in neighbouring Sudan. They include the Nile Lechwe and the white-eared kob.
Elephant, lion and giraffe can also be seen. The most important bird species is the Whale-Headed Stork.

Mago National Park.

The most southerly national park in Ethiopia is Mago, which is 770 km south-west of the capital Addis Ababa. It lies within Gamo Gofa region on the eastern bank of the Omo River and 2,160 sq km in area.

The highest point is Mount Mago (2,528 m) in the north of the park. The vegetation is mostly Savannah with some forested areas near the rivers. Although the very dense bush and the lack of roads makes game-viewing difficult before 10 years ago and now it is a great news for every travellers who would like to visit the park that the road construction problems has solved by the government since the last 5 years.

It is possible to see Buffalo, Giraffe and Elephant and, if you lucky, Lion and Leopard. Birds such as Bustards, Hornbills and Weavers are typical of the dry, grassland habitat, while kingfishers and herons can be seen around the Neri River.

Nechsar National Park.

Just 200 km to the east of Mago, the Nichsar national park is also in Gamo Gofa region. Covering 514 sq km, It is only about one quarter of the size of Mago. There is a wide variety of scenery, for as well as the “white grass” Savannah from which the park gets its name, there are deeply cut hills and mountains, In addition, the park includes the shoreline of lakes Abaya and Chemo, and there are hot springs near the edge of the park. Crocodiles, Hippopotamus and Zebras are common wild animals to spot.