Bahir Dar Flights:
Flights to Bahir Dar Bahir Dar is a popular tourist city in northern Ethiopia. It’s a great town, with modern amenities, clean streets and some excellent natural attractions within easy distance.
Bahir Dar Airport (airport code: BJR) is only 7km from the centre of the city and offers a number on convenient international flights to Bahir Dar. Several flights are available from South Africa, but only one with a single connection. You can fly with Ethiopian Airlines and connect in Addis Ababa. South African Airways will have stop-overs in Cairo and Addis Ababa, which is the same route offered by Egyptair. Kenya Airways also has flights to Bahir Dar through Nairobi and Addis Ababa.
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The Tourist Attractions of Bahir Dar:
Most people in this part of Ethiopia will speak Amharic and many businesses should have someone who speaks English as well. Many of the younger generation do speak English but learning a few phases in Amharic would be a good idea.
Bahir Dar is right on the southern shore of Tana Lake, which is one of the prettiest natural attractions nearby. It’s the source for the Blue Nile River though the famous waterfalls at the Blue Nile are largely gone due to a new hydroelectric dam. They are still a lovely sight during the rainy season though. Dek Island is in the middle of the lake, and there are several old monasteries located there. You can take a public ferry to the island, and spend some time among these beautiful old buildings.
Simien Mountains National Park
Though it’s not a large park, the Simien Mountains National Park is easily reachable by paved road north of Bahir Dar. The park is mostly the Simien Mountain range, including the highest peak of Ras Dashan. Several endangered species live in the park, including the Ethiopian wolf and a particular type of mountain ibex. Baboons, wild cats, and dozens of bird species call the park home too.
Yangudi Rassa National Park
It will take a few hours by car across the country, but Yangudi Rassa is the largest nature park in Ethiopia so you should try to fit it into your timetable if possible. The park is to the east of Bahir Dar, and is continuous with the Mile-Serdo Wildlife Reserve. The area is mostly grassland and some scrub forest, and most of the animals are the grazing type such as zebras, wild asses, gazelles, oryx and gerenuks.
Another city to the north of Bahir Dar offers a few unique sites as well. There are 17th century castle ruins in Gondar that you should see if you have the time. It is a quite a large complex of buildings and ruins so you should plan on a full afternoon there. The town also has several old churches and monasteries for touring.
When Should You Visit?:
Some months are quite hot in Bahir Dar, but there are more comfortable times that you should try to schedule for. The best time would be in July or August. It will be around 24C (75F) during the day and there is some occasional rain, though this is really the most pleasant time to visit. The other months are all hotter, and it peaks in March and April with daytime high temperatures of 30C (86F).