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3.5 Million Years Old Lucy Is A Popular Attraction In Ethiopia

February 11, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Lucy is the name on everyone’s lips in Ethiopia.  She is the top rating exhibit housed in the amazing Addis Ababa National Museum.

One of the oldest hominids ever found. (Hominids are primates of a family which includes humans and their early ancestors.)

Lucy was discovered by four geologists in 1974 at the Hadar excavation site in Ethiopia. They were both staggered and delighted to find the 3.5 million year-old remains. During the excavation and celebrations the song ‘Lucy in the sky with diamonds’ was all the rage and always on the airwaves and so Lucy was named.

Lucy – so small

Upon examination, Lucy’s bones revealed she was a mere 1.06 metres or 3.5 feet tall. Significantly, they show she walked erect (standing). Though she didn’t fit into any previously-known hominid types, the epic discovery confirmed hominids were walking on two legs over three million years ago.

Whilst Lucy is one of the mind blowing features of the country, the history, geography, culture, the people, the food and overall experiences are also spell binding.  Our group of Australian Tourism Wholesalers and Media only visited the north of the country.

The Ethiopian Government through its Tourism Organisation (ETO) is aware that the country has a wealth of vistas and experiences and have provided a significant budget to target potential visitors from around the world. The master plan is to promote the destination and showcase it to the world as a fascinating and safe country. National carrier, Ethiopian Airlines has joined ETO marketing Ethiopia as a global tourist destination and has indicated Australia is to come on line in the near future. 

Heading to Epiphany

The potential of the country as a popular tourist destination is certainly obvious after our 10 day tour and the Tourism department understand how crucial it is to lift the veil of mystique which currently shrouds the country.

Solomon Tadesse, CEO of the ETO says the country is improving its standards daily. “With construction at a high, ongoing improvements to infrastructure, upgrading destinations, more than 30 million enrolled in universities, 22 airports, upgraded road networks and health clinics and double digit economic growth over the past 12 years we are certainly heading in the right direction” he said.

With nine cultural heritage sights in the world list, Ethiopia’s history and culture is still in its infancy with experts claiming that more than 95% of the country’s past is still to be discovered.

Blood Baboons with a million dollar view

Highlights of our 10 day tour included the two day Epiphany celebrations with massive crowds rejoicing the baptism of Jesus with a re-enactment; locally called, the Timkat Festival, a visit to the breathtaking Simien National Park to mingle with the Blood Baboons and Bale Mountains with their wealth of endemic wildlife. Historical sites range from the atmospheric rock-hewn churches of Lalibela to the towering stelae (stone slabs or columns) of Aksum and castles in Gondar.

Ethiopia boasts the slogan ‘Land of Origin’ a visit certainly won’t disappoint.

For further information on touring Ethiopia

Churches meticulously carved out of the rock

African Wildlife Safaris – contact Kate Witton – Kate.W@awsnfs.com

Swagman Africa – contact Soula Burgess – soula@swagmantours.com.au

Africa Ubuntu Safaris – contact Cuan McLaren – cuan@africanubuntu.com.au

Peregrine / Intrepid Travel – Rowan Waters – rowan.waters@intrepidtravel.com

For general enquiries and information – Africareps – herbie@africareps.com

Written by John Savage who was a guest of the ETO and Ethiopian Airlines.

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