This first-of-its-kind community trekking with the Hamar people is the chance to get completely off the tourist trail in the Omo Valley, trek in a stunning remote area, learn all about an ancient way of life, treks 2-5 days.
Day 1: Trek to Daga Kaga village
After breakfast, we will drive from Mango Campsite near Turmi, to Arkale village (1 hour) which is the starting point of your trek. Our walk, which is a total of 16km, follows a traditional Hamar path through the bush, giving you the chance to meet tribespeople in their ochre paints and colourful beads on route to market. From this point, mules and our muleteer carry on ahead with camping equipment whilst we stop at a Hamar homestead for a refreshing ‘bunno’. The popular Hamar drink is brewed from coffee husks and served in a home-grown calabash gourd. Whilst quenching our thirst, you will learn about the traditional coffee blessing ritual performed by village elders. As we steadily ascend, the climate and temperature changes to a comfortable coolness. We walk slowly so that our Hamar guide can point out different flora and fauna. The trail path is a mixture of gravel with sand becoming rockier as we reach our final camping place in a peaceful spot close to a dry riverbed and hand water-pump in Daga Kaga village. In the afternoon, you will explore the local area, visiting a traditional Hamar family and farming land in surrounding hillsides. The meaning of the village is directly translated as ‘cold place’ so in the evening after dinner, you will wrap up warm in blankets under the stars and listen to traditional storytelling, usually with plenty of laughter. Quite magical!
Day 2: Hike through the highlands to Kufuri village
The day begins with a morning bunno blessing and after breakfast you will climb the highest peak of a nearby mountain which connects Hamar with neighbouring Arbore tribe. You will have a breath-taking view of Waito valley and river. After this we trek along the mountain ridge and deeper into traditional tribal life. Here there is very little trace of the outside world. Today’s 22km hike takes us through a stunning forest with diverse plant species and the chance to truly immerse in nature. You will learn more about the history of Muslim merchants who traded in the highlands and the traditional Hamar ‘duki’ burial ceremony, spotting steale gravestones dotted around the mountains. As we emerge from the woodland, you are rewarded with sweeping views of lush, green highlands rolling into huge valleys. We arrive at our camping ground in the picturesque village of Kufuri. Tonight, you will relax with the local community, partake in domestic duties such as goat milking and grinding flour before sampling traditional Hamar cuisine for dinner.
Day 3: Trek to Buska, discover an ancient forest and the origin of Hamar
It is said that all Hamar people originally came from Buska which is a fertile, and well-watered mountainous area in the north of Hamar. To reach this remote highlander community, we set-off on a pleasant 18km hike through hilltop meadows and forests enjoying rustic scenery along the way. You will notice that crops are more abundant here and we will stop so you can join in with seasonal activities such as harvesting or ploughing land by oxen. Today’s special treat is watching traditional beehives being made (seasonal). Hamar men are skilled in making beehives and are responsible for raising them into acacia trees and smoking out bees to retrieve honey. Depending on the season, you will also have a chance to sample organic Hamar honey which is fruity and often pink in colour. Alternatively, you will spend some time exploring the Buska forest. In the late afternoon, you will be picked up in Buska and driven back to Mango campsite via a traditional Hamar market (depending on the day) where Hamar people trade livestock, honey, tobacco, and socialise over large calabashes of sorghum beer. The scenery changes to enormous open plains which is very sparsely populated. Overnight stay at Mango campsite.
How to get there?
This trip can be done as a weekend trip from Addis Abeba. You could do this by car, bus or plane, however then there will be extra travel time. This trip is also possible to incorporate in a complete journey through the South of Ethiopia. The easiest route would be from Jinka or Arba Minch via Konso to Turmi.
This price is valid from 2 people. As more people join the trip, the price drops. Form a group yourself or ask us on which data a join-in group already takes place. See below for more info about what is/not included.
Transport to the start and end of the trek
Local guide & scout during the trek
Donkeys and escorts during the trek
All entrance fees to villages and activities
All meals (breakfast /lunch/dinner)
Cook, assistant & cooking equipment
Daily drinking water
Government tax and VAT
Travel warranty according to Dutch law
CO2 compensation for flight and land arrangement
Vaccinations & medication
Personal travel insurance
Tips for guides and photography
Other own expenses
There are four camping spots located in peaceful spots within Hamar villages. You'll trek alongside a trained local guide and mules carrying camping equipment and drinking water. Overnight you'll camp in basic tents, and we provide comfortable sleeping gear.
During the trek, you'll be fully catered for with three delicious, organic meals a day and drinking water. Your meals are prepared by a local chef using fresh, local produce including Ethiopian roasted coffee.
Eco-friendly sanitation facilities are currently under development at the camping spots along the trail. We provide local soap and fetch fresh water so that you can refresh at the end of a long day trekking.