A few weeks ago I was travelling to the western part of Ethiopia for some project work. The last time I had been there was five years ago.

At that time I remember, my journey was so exhaustive, due to the difficult gravel road which made the place almost inaccessible. I never thought I would go there again.

Improving Roads

But this time many things had changed. Though some parts of the road are still under construction, many parts of it are completed and are easing the difficulties travellers and drivers use to face.

Such infrastructural improvements especially on the road sector are also significant in many other parts of the country. Good quality roads are to be found now in increasing numbers, leading to all corners of the country.

Improving Air Transport

Not only the road sector but also the upgraded and growing air transportation sector has also added good value to travelling to and within Ethiopia.

The old terminal at Bole International Airport has been renovated to serve the domestic and international flights within the past five years.

The Bole International Airport also ushers in a whole new era for Addis Ababa, bringing the runway up to 21st century standards including capability to accommodate the largest jets. The main airports within the country have also been expanded and upgraded for better service.

The main and most visible improvement in the airport sector is, of course, the new terminal with its high and spacious design. Passenger convenience and service has been the guiding principle of the new building. Space has been increased to five times the previous main terminal, which is now a massive 40,000 sq meters.

Improving Hotels and Services

Many new hotels have been built and many others are under construction in the capital as well as in the main tourist destinations. Hotels offering very good services, ranging from the luxurious ones, to the budget types, are operating in many regions of the country.

Continuing improvements make Ethiopia an important and enjoyable tourism destination and it has emerged as one of the top ten must visit places in 2007. A testimony to which was recently given by Frommer’s, renowned for their travel expertise for over 50 years.

Of course there are still many remaining assignments before Ethiopia is able to fully offer her most hidden treasures to the world.

There are still areas that are difficult to access and where hotels, lodges or other facilities are hard to find, even though such areas make attractive and amazing tourism destinations.

However much has improved and there is a great and bright hope for Ethiopia to sustain and grow even more in the future.

Eskinder Hailu - Manager, Highway Tours

Eskinder Hailu
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