Since Hawassa is one of the most popular resort cities in Ethiopia and a fast-growing regional capital to boot, a boat trip on the 129km2 Lake Awassa is going to be a more casual experience. While Lake Langano provides respite from the road, the calmer waters of Awassa offer a sanctuary in the city.

Despite its smaller size, there is plenty of birding and hippo watching to do away from the hustle and bustle of this young and promising college town, especially around the place called Tikor Wuha (Black Water). Boats can be found at Amora Gedel Park, as well as around some of the city’s lakeside resorts, such as Lewi Resort & Spa, Haile Resort, and Wabe Shebelle Hotel Number One.