Marvel at the exquisite churches and landscapes that Ethiopia is known for. Learn about the architecture as you visit these superhuman creations, and discover abundant wildlife at the ‘roof of Africa.’ Snorkel and dive in the crystal clear waters of the Seychelles as you sail to a new destination each day aboard your luxury motor yacht. Bask in the sun on remote islands dotted with palm trees and close your eyes to the soft beating of the waves in the ocean. Amazing flora and fauna, lovely and hospitable people, and island life at its best will make you not to want to return home!
Moderately Active. May involve some moderate hikes in forests and nature reserves, getting in and out of vehicles and rocking boats, and walking in uneven pavement in archaeological sites, in some cases in extreme weather conditions, heat, high elevation and humidity.
Ethiopia is blessed with mild temperatures. The highlands average below 70 degrees and the lowlands can soar past 90 degrees. The heaviest rains are traditionally between June and October. Right after the rains, the highlands take on a beautiful green sheen with a plethora of wildflowers. The Seychelles are blessed with ideal weather year round. The windiest time to visit is May to September, and the calmest seas can be experienced March/April and October/November. The wettest month is January and July/August the driest. Temperatures range between 75 and 90 degrees year-round. The Seychelles lie outside the cyclone zone, but can be affected by cyclones in other region with gray, windy weather between December and March. For birdwatchers the breeding season is April, the nesting of Sooty Terns is May to September, and the migration is in October. Given the above, we suggest departures between March and June and October/November.
Board your overnight flight to Addis Ababa where you transfer to your hotel located in the mountainous countryside at 8,300 feet above sea level. SHERATON ADDIS HOTEL. (Meals Aloft)
Fly to the mountain village of Lalibela, one of Ethiopia’s holiest places. Some 800 years ago, safe from the prying eyes and plundering hands of hostile intruders, a noble king fashioned a secret marvel – known as ‘Africa Petra,’ unique churches with towering edifices that were hewn out of the solid, red volcanic rock on which they stand. They seem to be of superhuman creation – in scale, in workmanship and in concept, and like medieval mysteries, much effort has been made to cloak their nature. Some lie almost completely hidden, while others stand in open quarried caves. Spend the next two days exploring the churches, including Genete Maryam, a large monolith carved into a pink-tinged outcrop. Your hotel has been built to reflect on the historical and cultural elements of Lalibela. ROHA HOTEL. (B,L,D Daily)
Fly back to Addis Ababa for a half day tour that includes: The National Museum which houses the 3.5 million year old skeleton of ‘Lucy’; the Trinity Cathedral; the dynamic Mercato, one of the largest markets in Africa offering an array of colors, aromas, costumes, produce and jewelry. In the evening, enjoy dinner at an ethnic restaurant. SHERATON ADDIS HOTEL. (B,L,D)
Fly to the Seychelles, where you transfer to your hotel, an indulgent retreat that captures the true spirit of the Seychelles, a world of tranquil beaches and experiences. KEMPINSKI SEYCHELLES RESORT. (B,D)
Transfer to the port to board the luxurious MOTOR YACHT PEGASUS which offers 2,500 square feet of deck space for optimal ocean views. Relax with friends in the lounge, read a book in their library and enjoy sea view dining. Have a refreshing welcome cocktail and a briefing before setting sail to Beau Vallon Bay where you will dock for the night. (B,L,D)
Leave Mahe Island and sail towards Aride, a beautiful granite island north of Praslin, covered in dense vegetation and home to birds such as Audubon’s Shearwater and the Seychelles Warbler. Climb to the top of the island for stunning views and search for the Wright’s gardenia found nowhere else in the world. In the afternoon sail to Anse Lazio in Praslin, renowned for its beautiful beaches. Enjoy water sports such as snorkeling or diving. (B,L,D)
Sail to Cousin Island, home to the Bird Sanctuary that harbors a quarter million birds. See turtle nesting sites along the sandy beaches. Later set sail for Curieuse where you will remain at anchor for the night. The following day, visit the uninhabited island of Curieuse, home to giant tortoises. Enjoy a fun-filled day of water sports, a barbecue on the beach and a Creole night. (B,L,D Daily)
SLeave Curieuse and sail towards Baie St. Ann or Anse Possession. Disembark for an excursion to the Vallee de Mai Reserve, a World Heritage Site. Walk along pathways dotted with tall palm trees that produce the Coco de Mer and search for the elusive Black Parrot, only found here. Enjoy a leisurely afternoon where you are free to snorkel or dive or just relax on the yacht. (B,L,D)
This morning reach the uninhabited Sister Island or Coco Island for great snorkeling in crystal clear waters. After lunch, arrive in La Digue, a quiet island community where you will not find cars, just bicycles and oxcarts. Enjoy an oxcart tour to one of the most photographed beaches in the world, the picturesque Anse de Source d’Argent, for a sunset swim. (B,L,D)
Enjoy a lazy morning in La Digue and navigate to St. Anne Island. You will have one last chance to snorkel and dive in these beautiful waters before your Captain’s dinner in the evening. Later, float back to Mahe Island. (B,L,D)
Disembark and transfer back to the KEMPINSKI SEYCHELLES RESORT. Time for a last swim, or to explore and shop at Victoria. Tonight, enjoy a farewell dinner. Next day, transfer to the airport for your flights home, via Addis Ababa. You will have fond memories of the fascinating churches in Ethiopia and mesmerizing islands life of the Seychelles. (B,D; B, Meals Aloft)
Continue your journey through Ethiopia as you explore Bahir Dar, a thriving town set at an elevation of 6,000 feet. Go to Lake Tana, the largest highland lake in Ethiopia, with islands that contain ancient churches and monasteries, and see the Blue Nile Falls. Travel by boat to Ura Kidan Meheret and Azwa Mariam, famous for their old manuscripts, crosses, icons and paintings. Then journey to Gondar, stopping off in Awra Ama, a small village that emphasizes gender unity. In Gondar, marvel at the many churches and castles built by Emperor Fassiladas and his descendants. Take in the spectacular landscape while enjoying a picnic lunch in the foothills of Semen Mountain.
Sign up today for exciting news, upcoming promotions and interesting stories in the world of conservation, nature and travel. For every person that signs up, Classic Escapes will donate $1 to our featured conservation.