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“Don't go in the rainy season” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Simien National Park

Simien National Park
Debark, Ethiopia
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Ranked #1 of 2 things to do in Debark
Certificate of Excellence 2014
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: An area of outstanding rugged scenery and extremely rare wildlife has some interesting trekking routes.
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
78 attraction reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
132 helpful votes 132 helpful votes
“Don't go in the rainy season”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2013

The guide books lead one to believe that one can still visit the Simiens in the rainy season, because the rain is limited to short downpours which only affect part of any given day. This was not our experience in July - it rained torrentially all day, and the Simien park was completely shrouded in thick cloud meaning we could see very little of the marvellous landscape. The only animals we saw were the gelada baboons (who were amazing - envied them their thick coats in that sodden climate!), and we got no more than about a third of the way into the park, because the rain had washed away part of the only road, making it impassable, meaning we had to return to Debark without reaching the higher Afro-montane landscapes. All in all a largely wasted day, followed by an extremely disappointing evening in Debark itself.

The park guides gave us to believe we were simply very unlucky, but I am not so sure. In conversation with out tour guide (who did his best under the circumstances), it became clear that the park authorities don't advise people to visit in the rainy season, but allow people to buy tickets so they can make the money.

Bear all this in mind when planning your trip.

Visited July 2013
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265 reviews from our community

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
1 review
“I had my mind blown”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

Visited: June, 2013 - 3 day tour

On my visit to Ethiopia, I saw Mr. Addis Yimer's hailed review on Trip Advisors and decided to schedule a tour. Our plane to Gondor was delayed a day - he was very flexible, picked us up from the airport when we arrived, and stayed with us the first day. He showed us around the city, before taking us up to the mountains. He is literally a walking encyclopaedia of everything to know about tourism in the country, and the natural environment in the mountains.
The tour itself was amazing - saw some baboons, breath-taking sights, and ate some delicious food. Fair warning, this is a physically straining trip - there's a lot of hiking involved, often up steep climbs, and it does get cold the higher up you get - all part of the adventure.
I highly recommend visiting these mountains and scheduling a tour with Mr. Addis NOW! Before everyone catches on and the prices sky-rocket!

Visited June 2013
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Van Nuys, CA
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Simiens = Spectacular!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

I spent 4 days in the Simiens and I could have easily stayed longer! I didn't hire a guide but both my scout and muler handler were extremely helpful; the scout was my photographer and the mule handler went ahead and boiled some hot water so it was ready when I arrived at camp. Initially I planned on only 3 days but I opted to hike to Chenek (and I'm glad I did!).

The Simiens get extremely cold at night, so bring plenty of warm clothes, extra socks, and a very warm sleeping bag.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
“Trekking with Ethiopia Eco Tour and Trek in the Simien”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

I went on a three-day hike in the Simien National Park with Ethiopia Eco Tour and Trek company, run by Addis Yimer. Mr. Yimer had some of the best prices of any of the trek organizing companies out there, especially for bigger groups. He was very professional and very helpful in answering our questions and making sure we have as customizable and enjoyable of a trip as possible. He even met us in Addis Ababa before our trip to meet us and talk to us about our trip.

The staff he hired for the trip was really great and very professional. His cook, Mr. Nile, cooked 5-star meals with about a quarter of the equipment. The guide was amazing (though Mr. Yimer is not allowed to pick our guide as the park service has a guide queue), and showed us a great time, and was super flexible when some of our group wanted to do slightly different hikes.

Outside of his organizing the trip for us, he also arranged transportation for us, per our request via email before the trip, and also brought one of the people in our group a cake for her birthday!

I would recommend Mr. Yimmer's company, Ethiopia Eco Tour and Trek, to anyone!

Visited April 2013
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Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Top Contributor
525 reviews 525 reviews
141 attraction reviews
Reviews in 125 cities Reviews in 125 cities
180 helpful votes 180 helpful votes
“You MUST make time for this.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

I wish we had more time. Our days were spent driving around the park looking at some of the most beautiful, dramatic scenery ever. The wildlife was also amazing. Hours spent watching the baboons. we saw many birds as well as the Ibex. Stunning place, just a little hard to get to.

Visited May 2013
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