Fentalé is a volcano in the hot, lowland environment of Awash National Park in Afar Regional State. The park is a great place to get out of the cold during the rainy season and it is not far from Addis Abeba. There are a lot of safari animals, primates, and birds to see here. Fentalé rises at least 1,000m above the Rift Valley floor. It is covered with acacia woodland and brush. Since there isn’t a lot of shade, it is nice to make an ascent during the cool of the morning. Lunch can be enjoyed at the crater rim before descending to explore the caldera. Part of the crater floor is covered by forest, so it is possible to find shade there.
Some people are even living way out in the center of a volcano that is not yet extinct. After meeting some of the locals and seeing what life is like for them, additional time can be taken to look for more wildlife before heading back up to the rim.
It should be noted that it is usually forbidden to enter the park on foot. For an early start in order to see the most wildlife, a vehicle should already be prepared and the night should be spent in the town of Awash or, better yet, at Awash Falls Lodge.
Awash Falls Lodge is inside the park, so waiting for the park gate to open in the early morning, isn’t a necessary. There are also some nice day hikes around the Awash River Gorge from the lodge with views of the river and falls and the wildlife there, especially crocodiles.
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