Pilgrimages and Festivals

With Ethiopia’s combination of deep faith, religion, holy sites, and traditional culture, there are many large pilgrimages in the country, both for Christians and Muslims. The famous historical sites of Axum, Lalibela, and Gondar all have major pilgrimages on the various major Christian holidays. As the most important church in Ethiopia, Axum’s Kidist Mariam Tsion […]

New Year (Enkutatash)

Ethiopian New Year’s Day, falling on September 11 in the Gregorian calendar (or September 12 the year before Gregorian leap year), marks the perfect season, when yellow daisies (adey abeba) start to blossom in the midst of the green countryside, after the long rains end. The sun comes out shyly as the rains subside, as […]

Finding of the True Cross (Mesqel )

Mesqel, feels like a continuation of the celebration of Enkutatash, making September a month of festivities. Unlike Enkutatash, there is an outdoor celebration on a smallscale in everyone’s backyard as well as a grand damera celebration, which involves a Christmas tree-looking thing, made of dried sticks decorated by green adey abeba, by this time very […]

Christmas (Genna)

The Ethiopian Christmas celebration, falling on January 7 (or 8 during Gregorian leap year), is not as decorated as Mesqel or Timkat but still very significant. If in Lalibela around this time, the sight of priests, singing on the cliffs around Bet Giorgis is a one that will be embedded in any memory of Ethiopia. […]

Epiphany (Timkat)

Timkat is a holiday that has the largest numbers in attendance, and most of its ceremony takes place outside church compounds. The eve of Timkat is the one time that the replicas of the Arks of the Covenant, which every Ethiopian Orthodox church must have, leaves their sanctuaries and find resting places outside, preferably near […]

Easter Fasika

After the great lent of two months, conducted in remembrance of the fasting, suffering, and crucifixion of Jesus, Easter is a time when Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus by singing sacred songs and chanting on the eve, during the midnight mass. It is also dominated by feasts of all of the great national foods […]

Eid al Fetir

takes place after the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims fast for one month. This month is a time when there is a spirit of prayer and giving, and, after sunset, each day, the fast is broken together with family and friends. At the end of the month, on Eid al Fetir, Muslims carry out […]

Eid al Adha

An equally important Muslim holiday is Eid al Adha or the Feast of the Sacrifice, which occurs in the 12th month of the Hijra calendar. Mosques are thronged for prayer, animals are sacrificed for the occasion, and the meat is shared equally between family members, neighbors, and the poor


 Ashenda: A not to be missed Northern Ethiopia Colorful Festival Starting from Wednesday August 22nd 2018 – 24th  in Mekelle Ashenda  (Tigrinya: ኣሸንዳ, Agaw language: ሻደይ) is a festival celebrated in August (G.C.) in the Tigray andAmhara regions of EthiopiaAshenda marks the end of a two-week-long fast known as Filseta (Ge’ez: ጾመ-ፍልሰታ) when adherents of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Churchgather to honour the Virgin Mary. Ashenda […]