Things to do in Addis
Ethiopia is one of the oldest Christian countries in the world and its capital Addis Ababa is Africa's fourth largest city, often referred to as the diplomatic and political capital of Africa. Addis is full of surprises being the home of suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst's tomb, and where 'Lucy' the oldest hominin was discovered. Widely believed to be the birthplace of coffee, its capital is home to some of the best coffee houses and restaurants in the country. We've put together a list of some of Addis' top sights should you have a few minutes to spare during the Congress.
To get a full understanding of Ethiopia's cultural and social history, the Ethnological Museum is one of the finest museums in Africa. It is set within Haile Selassie’s former palace and surrounded by the beautiful gardens and fountains of the university’s main campus.
Hours: 08:00-17:00 Mon-Fri, 09:00-17:00 Sat & Sun
Location: Addis Ababa University, Algeria Street
To visit the world-famous Lucy, whose discovery in north-west Ethiopia in the 1970s changed our understanding of human origins, visit the paleontological exhibition in the basement of the museum.
Opening times: 08:30-12.30 and 13:30-17:30 Mon-Fri, 08:30-12:30 Sat & Sun
Location: King George VI Street
St George's Cathedral and museum
Built by Italian prisoners of war in the late 19th century after Emperor Menelik II's victory at Adwa, this stunning church is dedicated to Ethiopia's patron saint and noted for its distinctive octagonal form. Its grey stone exterior is offset by the interior's colourful art and mosaics, some of which was created by Afewerk Tekle, one of Ethiopia's most celebrated artists.
Opening times: 09:00-12:00 and 14:00-17:00 Tues-Sun
Location: Fitawrari Gebeyehu Street
Holy Trinity Cathedral
This huge and ornate cathedral is the final resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie and his wife Empress Menen Asfaw, both of whom lie in massive granite tombs inside the cathedral. Expect to see pilgrims paying their respects.
Opening times: 08:00-13:00 and 14:00-18:00 Mon-Fri
Location: Off Niger Street
Best coffee in Addis
Tomoca Coffee House
The beans are roasted on site at this coffee house, which is said to serve the best coffee in the capital. If you are looking for a large souvenir, they sell beans by the half kilo!
Opening times: 06:30-20:30 Mon-Sat, 06:30-18:00 Sun
Location: Wavel Street
Traditional music and food
For traditional singing, dancing and food head to Yod Abyssinia where you can enjoy traditional performances from 19:30 most evenings, accompanied by a glass of tej (honey wine).
Location: off Cameroon Street