Ethiopia Photo Expedition

14 days
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3.5/5 Great
30 reviews  
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Group Tour
Between its ancient wonders and its vibrant ethnic traditions, Ethiopia presents a rare chance for photographers to document fascinating cultures barely touched by the centuries. In the Omo River Valley, meet and photograph diverse peoples who distinguish themselves with elaborate body paint, scarification, and lip plates. Document bustling market scenes, and...
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Trip type
Group Tour
Lodging level
Premium - 4 star
Physical level
Trip pace
Balanced schedule


    • Document the unique traditions of the peoples of the Omo Valley, described by National Geographic magazine as “Africa’s Last Frontier,” during dances and gatherings specially arranged for our group.
    • Frame a wide array of subjects, from bustling village markets and everyday life among thatched huts to the birdlife of Lake Chamo and the pilgrims of Lalibela.
    • Visit Omo Child, an organization co-founded by National Geographic Explorer Lale Labuko, dedicated to rescuing mingi children in the Omo Valley.

What's this trip about?

    Between its ancient wonders and its vibrant ethnic traditions, Ethiopia presents a rare chance for photographers to document fascinating cultures barely touched by the centuries. In the Omo River Valley, meet and photograph diverse peoples who distinguish themselves with elaborate body paint, scarification, and lip plates. Document bustling market scenes, and train your lens on the exquisite underground churches of Lalibela.

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Itinerary focusClassic Highlights
Group sizeOperator does not provide
Age rangeNo age restrictions
Flights and transportAll internal ground transport included
Start CityAddis Ababa
End CityAddis Ababa

Travel Themes

  • Education / Learning
  • Photography


  • Africa
  • Ethiopia


  • Addis Ababa


  • Adventure & Adrenaline
  • Canoeing
  • Culture
  • Historic sightseeing
  • History
  • Photography

Trip includes

    • Accommodations
    • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
    • Educational materials
    • Pre-departure information
    • Entrance fees, excursions, and sightseeing noted as included in the itinerary
    • All gratuities except those for train or ship's crew, unless otherwise noted on the itinerary page
    • Ground transportation during the expedition
    • Transfers to and from group flights where applicable
    • Services of National Geographic experts and/or local guides, lecturers, expedition leaders
    • Other staff
    • Taxes, port charges, baggage handling, and service charges
    • Internal airfare is included on some international expeditions as indicated in the itinerary.

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Travel Map

Days 1 & 2: U.S./Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Radisson Blu

Depart for Addis Ababa on an overnight flight. If you wish, head to the Ethnographic Museum for an introduction to Ethiopia’s cultures before we gather for a welcome dinner tonight.

Day 3: Addis Ababa/Arba Minch

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Paradise Lodge

Begin the day with a behind-the-scenes tour of the National Museum of Ethiopia. See historical treasures as well as some of the most important early human fossils finds in the world. Fly south...

Day 4: Arba Minch/Jinka

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Eco Omo Safari Lodge

During a cruise on Lake Chamo, zoom in on a wide variety of birdlife, as well as hippos and crocodiles wallowing by the shore. Then drive south and west by 4x4 through ever-changing land...

Day 5: Jinka

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Eco Omo Safari Lodge

The distinctive cultural identities of the Omo Valley make it an extraordinary place to photograph. This is the home of tribes such as the Kara, the Hamer, and the Mursi, who decorate th...

Day 6: Jinka/Turmi

Meals:: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Buska Lodge

Head south into the heart of the Omo Valley, stopping at villages and market towns along the way. Get acquainted with Hamer people, who fashion their clothing out of goat skins, cowrie shells, and beads, and cover their hair and skin with a mix of butter and red minerals.

Days 7 & 8: Turmi

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Buska Lodge

Work on portraiture and capturing scenes from everyday life during a fantastic photo adventure. We’ll hop in canoes, drive, and walk to reach the diverse communities around Turmi, including the D...

Days 9 & 10: Turmi/Konso/Addis Ababa

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (Day 9); Breakfast, Lunch(Day 10)

Accommodation: Kanta Lodge

Our last Omo Valley encounter is with the Arbore people, who live in tall, rounded huts. After a photo shoot, drive to the terraced hills of the Konso region, de...

Days 11 & 12: Lalibela

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Tukul Village

Fly north to the World Heritage site of Lalibela. Hewn out of sheer rock below ground level, Lalibela’s eleven freestanding churches date from the 12th century and have welcomed worshippers eve...

Days 13 & 14: Addis Ababa/U.S.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation: Radisson Blu

Return to Addis Ababa and enjoy time to explore the city. Set on a photo shoot, wandering amid the stalls of the Mercado, the largest open-air market in Africa, where metalworkers recycle scrap metal an...

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Dates & Availability

Price From $7,995
Price per day$571
Last Updated: 2/23/2024

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with National Geographic Expeditions.

The total tour cost includes the tour price (regular or promotional) and the compulsory local payment. The promotional price is subject to change. Check directly with the operator for the latest price offer. The tour operator requires you to pay only the tour price to purchase your travel. The compulsory local payment will be paid when you join the trip. All prices are based on double, twin or triple share occupancy. Solo passengers will be accommodated in a double, twin or triple room according to availability with a passenger(s) of the same gender. Single supplement only needs to be paid if the passenger does not want to share and requests their own room. Discounts can only be applied at the time of booking and cannot be added at a later date, regardless of any changes made to the original booking.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

National Geographic Expeditions Reviews & Ratings

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National Geographic Expeditions span the globe and are designed to reflect our travelers' broad spectrum of interests, from small-ship expeditions and classic train journeys to photography workshops and family adventures. When you travel with us, you'll enjoy boundless opportunities to be surrounded by natural wonders and exotic wildlife, to explore celebrated archaeological sites, to learn about different cultures and share in local traditions. A National Geographic expert or expert team accompanies each expedition, sharing their knowledge and passion for a region and making each experience enriching and unforgettable.

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National Geographic Expeditions, the travel program of the National Geographic Society, was founded on the same belief in the importance of exploration that distinguishes the Society's 125-year history. Launched in 1999, National Geographic Expeditions now operates hundreds of trips each year, spanning all seven continents and more than 60 destinations.

Since its founding in 1888, the Society has developed incredible resources—from its network of experts, contacts, and Society-sponsored researchers all over the globe, to the top-tier editorial staff of National Geographic and National Geographic Traveler magazines, and the books, maps, and film and television divisions. National Geographic Expeditions taps these resources to create unique and authentic expeditions to fascinating parts of the world.

As part of the National Geographic Travel group, National Geographic Expeditions aims to fulfill the Society's mission to inspire people to care about the planet by providing meaningful opportunities to explore it. Proceeds from all travel programs support the Society’s efforts to increase global understanding through exploration, education and scientific research.

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Travel that’s tailored to your interests: Whether you're a budding photographer, a natural history enthusiast, a parent looking for a great family trip, or a traveler seeking an active adventure, you'll find an array of opportunities that fit your passions and interests.

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What's excluded

    • International airfare transportation and related fees
    • Activities noted as optional in the itinerary
    • Gratuities for train or ship’s crew,
    • Passport, visa, and permit expenses
    • Medical expenses and immunizations
    • Baggage/accident/cancellation insurance
    • Personal expenses, such as laundry, telephone calls, and alcoholic beverages
    • The “B, L, D” notations apply to the period during the expedition only and do not include any meals on flights to/from the expedition
Travel Insurance
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance alongside your travel package to safeguard against unforeseen circumstances such as medical expenses, trip cancellations, and other contingencies. It offers you peace of mind and ensures you are prepared for unexpected events that may occur before or during your journey
Visa requirements
Visa requirements vary depending on your country of origin and your country of destination. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the relevant requirements. For a handy tool that can help you quickly find the requirements, please visit this link .
Meals Included

12 Breakfast, 11 Lunches and 9 Dinners

Age Requirements
No age restrictions
Optional Activities
  • Gonder, Lake Tana, and the Simien Mountains - Post-Trip Extension, 5 Days
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