Arba Minch' Travel Guide

  • The bungalows
    The bungalows
    by daniellebgraham
  • The view of Nech Sar and Lake Chamo
    The view of Nech Sar and Lake Chamo
    by daniellebgraham
  • The restaurant with the amazing view
    The restaurant with the amazing view
    by daniellebgraham

Arba Minch' Things to Do

  • Crocodile Ranch

    In Arba you can go on Lake Chamo by boat to see crocodiles/hippos.This costs approx 75 Birr to enter the park, and 150 Birr to hire the boat.As we were low on funds, we opted to visit the Crocodile Ranch (50 Birr) which is 4km from Arba.The ranch is, well, awful. It is a series of tanks. Some empty, some with 2 or 3 giant crocs, others with up to...

  • Dorze Village

    About 1 hour up the mountain road from Arba is the Dorze Village of Chincha.It is a real village, but set up like a working museum, with a tour, demonstrations of local cooking etc.You get to see how the Dorze live, making use of everything they grow with no waste. Even the animals are used to heat the homes. The people live in houses made to...

  • Dorze village with beehive huts.

    The Dorze people are famous for their huge huts, resembling a giant beehive.Allthough these huts look fragile, they can last up to 60 years. The huts can also be transported to another locations, thanks to the structure made of vertical poles.The Dorze people are farmers, who prevent soil erosion, by ingenious terracing of the mountainside.Around...

  • Guge Mountains

    North of Arba Minch it's nice to visit the Guge Mountains (2.400 M) . In the mountains the temperature is nice. Because of the height it's rather cool and sometimes even cloudy and cold.In the Guge mountains live the Dorze people,belonging to the Omotic peoples of the south west of Ethiopia. You can visit the villages Dorze and Chenca, known about...

  • Colourful woven cotton

    In the Chenca area you can find the best woven cotton of Ethiopia.At many places in the Dorze villages and along the road you can see the very colourful woven articles.Traditionally the men weave and the women spin. It's possible to visit a weaving cooperative in Gambelo Dokko near Chenca, but also along the road you can see weavening men.

  • Interior of a beehive hut

    We were invited to visit the interior of a Dorse beehive hut. Every hut hat a sort of ''nose'' at its south side, serving as reception room.After our eyes were accustomed at the rather darkness, coming from the full sunlight, it was interesting to see the construction of the hut from the inside. I was surprised about the large space in the hut....


Arba Minch' Restaurants

  • sachara's Profile Photo

    by sachara Updated May 26, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Soma Restaurant in the Shecha part of Arba Minch is very known because of its fresh fish dishes.
    You will start with a fish soup. Then you can choose, there are several main fish dishes with different sauces.
    I never saw such a giant tilapia, served in such a special way. One fish was enough for about four people.

    Favorite Dish: The giant grilled tilapia.

    tilapia at the Soma Restaurtant

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Arba Minch' Shopping

  • Colourful woven shammas, gabis and hats

    It's told that the best woven cotton of Ethiopia comes from the Dorze people in Chenca.Along the road to Dorze and Chenca we saw the stalls with the colourful cloth. Also sometimes the men were weavening at the spot. The colourful shammas (local toga) and gabis (the thicker version of the shamma).There are also woven hats. This a a cheap place to...

  • Pottery & calebashes

    In the Dorze villages in the Guge Mountains you can find nice local pottery and calebashes.Some of the dark brown and black pottery is traditionally decorated. There are bowls and coffeejars, nowadays still used by the local people. The local people also use the calebashes in their daily life. A coffee jar or bowl, if you have enough place left in...

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Arba Minch' Local Customs

  • Fermenting the enset pulp

    After the Dorze woman showed us how she made the pulp of the enset, she wrapped the pulp in the banana-leaves She brought us to the corner of her compound, where she buried the wrapped new pulp of the enset or false-banana in an underground pit for the process of fermentation. She showed us also the earlier buried wrapped enset pulp in different...

  • Preparing enset-bread

    During our visit to a compound in one of the villages of the Dorze people, a woman showed us the different stages of preparing banana-bread of the bast of the false-banana tree, called enset. It is a laborious processAfter scraping the bast she showed us, how she made pulp of it by chopping and beating, using a wooden board and a small bamboo...

  • Enset plantations

    Around the beehivehuts of the Dorze people you can find enset plantations. Enset (Musa ensete) or the false-banana tree is a old banana tree, that is past bearing fruits. The Dorze people have a special custom to use these false-bananas. Nowhere in Africa you can find these customs. They scrape the bast to to remove all fibre and gather the stuff...


Arba Minch' Favorites

  • The rear of the procession

    In the rear of the procession we saw the women. It was nice to look at those women, while they were clapping hands, smiling and singing. It was the most lifely and joyful part of the procession.When the procession had passed, we like it to visit the new church, but some men didn't allow us to do so. Or maybe we could, if we payed a lot of...

  • Procession, the men

    After the priests with their umbrellas had past in the procession in the Dorze village, we saw a large group of men walking just behind the priests. There were many very old looking men, with grey beards.For such a small village it was a very large procession. So I supposed, the people were coming from many villages out of the whole area around.

  • Procession with colourful togas

    In the middle part of the procession we saw a group priests in their yellow togas with multi-coloured umbrellas.In their midst walked two important religious persons, wearing nicily decorated and embroidered togas, made of precious materials. There was nobody around, who could explain us about their identity, the meaning of all and what they were...


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