Scenery and nature
On whatever trip you take, in whichever direction, there will be marvellous scenery. To the north on the Historic Route there is dramatic mountain scenery, particularly around the Simiens. South of Addis Ababa there is a string of seven lakes along the floor of the Rift Valley - Lakes Zwai, Langano, Abiata, Shalla, Awassa, Abaya and Chamo – each in some way different from the other. East of Awassa is the Bale Mountains National Park, (see 2b above). A trip to Bale could include the underwater river and cave system of Sof Omar. South of Awassa the road passes through coffee plantations before reaching the more arid, acacia forested areas of Borana. In the west, on the road from Jimma to Gambella, there are vast stretches of tropical rain forest, while Gambella itself with its Nilotic ethnic groups provides a taste of the vast swamps and savannah of southern Sudan.
The eastern fork takes you to the Din Din forest, Dire Dawa, Harer, and for the intrepid traveler, the Somali Region.