Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa’s cityscape sports a local as well as international look, where bustling markets and green spaces happily coexist with historical monuments and soaring skyscrapers.
For a glimpse into the illustrious past of the country, head to Addis Ababa’s museums. The National Museum of Ethiopia is renowned for its ‘Lucy’ exhibit, a 3.2 million-year-old early human skeleton. You’ll also find centuries-old inscriptions, artworks, paleontological objects and ornate regalia here. Ethnological Museum Addis Ababa, located on the grounds of Addis Ababa University, is a short drive away and offers a peek into the cultural heritage of the region. Former emperor, Haile Selassie's bedroom is the highlight of the museum, with exquisite tribal artefacts and religious artworks adding to its charm.
Addis Ababa is home to several monuments paying homage to the historical events that have shaped the region. Religion, especially the Ethiopian branch of Eastern Orthodox Church, also occupies a place of importance in the country. On your Addis Ababa trip, set aside some time to explore the neo-baroque Holy Trinity Cathedral, which has impressive murals, grand stained glass windows and ornate interiors. It is also the burial place of Ethiopia’s celebrated king, Haile Selassie. In stark contrast, the Entoto Maryam Church is a simple yet stylised structure with an attractive octagonal shape and a multi-hued glass-panel railing. A visit to the neighbouring museum showcasing personal belongings of former Ethiopian royals is also recommended.