>The next day, we headed south, towards the lake region of the Rift Valley. The Rift Valley was formed by the movement of tectonic plates along a 4,000km fault line in Africa, running from the Red Sea, through Ethiopia to Kenya, and on through to Mozambique. I have seen this great valley in Uganda and Kenya, and will now experience it in Ethiopia. It is believed that, millions of years from now, this “rift” will fill in with water and will result in an actual separation of the African continent. in Ethiopia, there are six lakes which were formed by this rift, and that is where we are heading.
On the way, we stopped at a stelae field (graveyard) in Tiya, a UNESCO World Heritage site. These stelae were unearthed in I think it was the 1970’s by a French archaeologist, and they are believed to date back to the 13th century. Some of the stones are more flat to the ground, such as this one….this one had markings that indicate a woman was buried here, but it doesn’t show up very well in this photo…
We then headed to Lake Ziway, which is home to a number of bird species. Lots of maribou storks….
Next to the lake, there were lots of greenhouses, which are being used by the Norwegians to grow flowers, now the third largest export in Ethiopia (after the previously mentioned coffee and animal hides). They had been growing these flowers in Kenya, but Kenya started taxing them heavily. So Ethiopia gave them lots more land, and a several year tax break, to bring their flower business here, to support the local economy. That’s the good news….the bad news is that this plant negatively impacts the fish (tilapia and Nile perch) and the birdlife in this lake, as well as the health of its workers, due to the fertilizers they are using. (bummer).
We then headed to the Sabana Beach Resort, which overlooks Lake Langano. It was quite a walk down to the lake, so only a couple of people in our group took in the waters of the lake, which are supposed to be restorative…when one of them told me she felt something slither along her leg, I was glad I hadn’t taken the plunge :-).
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Location:Lake Langano, Ethiopia