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Addis Ababa

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Addis Ababa City Administration Featured

Addis Ababa, the capital city of Ethiopia, is at the heart of one of Africa’s most fascinating countries. Once known as Abyssinia, the home of the fabled Queen of Sheba, Ethiopia has a rich history dating back at least 3,000 years and one of the most stunning and diverse landscapes in the world.
Addis Ababa is the ideal gateway to and from most of Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe.It is an important administrative center, not only for Ethiopia but also for the whole of Africa. The headquarters of the UN Economic Commission for Africa was established here in 1958 and it is also the home of the African Union’s secretariat.

Ethiopians are traditionally hospitable people and tourists can be sure they will be well looked after here. Mass tourism has not reached this part of Africa, however, so visitors will experience the ‘real’ Ethiopia where some traditions have hardly changed for centuries.

Altitude and location

Addis Ababa, the largest city in Ethiopia and the seat of Federal Government, lies on the central plateau, 900 north of the Equator. The city is located at the heart of the country, at an altitude ranging from 2,100 metres at Akaki in the south to 3,000 metres at Entoto Hill in the north. This makes Addis the third highest city in the world, after La Paz and Quito in Latin America. Addis Ababa is fringed by Zuquala, Erer, Furi, Wechecha and Menagesha mountains which rise to over 3,000 metres. These mountains naturally regulate the climate of Addis Ababa, keeping it a pleasantly mild throughout the year – ideal for visitors. Characterized by wide avenues and fine0
architecture, the capital is a delightful place to explore.

The Entoto and its neighbouring hills lie between the watersheds of the Blue Nile to the northwest and the Awash to the south. The Entoto area is rugged with typically volcanic features and steep topography, while the central and the southern parts of Addis are characterized by gentle and rolling topography. The city has grown at an astonishing rate since it was founded over 120 years ago. Covering 540 square kilometres, the capital is endowed with green hillsides generating rapidly flowing streams, along with hot springs – one of the major reasons why it was chosen as the capital. Founded by Emperor Menelik II in 1887, today the city has a population of about 5 milLion.
One of the peculiar characteristics of the city is that it has a number of mountain that appear palced to safe guard the security of the city ,among which Entoto,Wochecha,Yerer,Furi,Ziqualla,and Menagesha are worth mentioning.

As it is the seat of the headquarters of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the African Union (AU) and other regional and international organizations, Addis is the diplomatic capital of Africa. Moreover, the presence of more than 100 embassies and consular missions has enabled it to serve as the venue for international conferences and other gatherings, and stand fourth among the most important centers of international organizations and embassies after Washington DC, New York and London.

Despite its relative proximity to the equator, the lofty altitude helps Addis Ababa enjoy a mild and hospitable tropical highland climate with an average temperature of 1600 Centigrade. The high altitude has a cooling effect and hence the temperature does not vary significantly throughout the year. Many visitors, who expect the climate to be more tropical like other cities near the equator, are pleasantly surprised to find the climate so mild when they visit Addis Ababa. The months from June to mid-September is the main rainy season during which days and nights are cool by local standards. Average annual rainfall is 1,160mm, of which about 80% falls between June and September, the months of July and August being the wettest. The hottest and driest months are usually April and May, when the days are pleasantly warm to hot and the nights are cool. The short rains fall during March to mid April, characterized by relatively cool nights and warm days.

Calendar and Time
The use of the Julian calendar was discarded by Europeans some 400 years ago. However, Ethiopia still uses the Julian calendar, which divides the year in to 12 months of 30 days each, with the remaining five days constituting the short 13th month of “Pagume” (in Greek Pagume means “Additional”). The Ethiopian New Year commences on the 11th September (Gregorian calendar) every year. Ethiopia is in the GMT+3 time zones.

Business Hours
Government offices have a 39 hours working week. The daily working hours from Monday to Thursday are 8.30am - 12.30pm and 1.30 - 5.30pm and on Friday 8.30 - 11.30am and 1.30 - 5.30pm. Most private businesses work on Saturdays.

Other Facts

Addis Ababa means ‘new flower’ in Amharic. Queen Taytu named the new settlement Addis Ababa, perhaps on account of the flowering Mimosa trees Language: The official language, Amharic, is extensively spoken and other local dialects are common. English is widely practiced as a medium of instruction in high schools and universities.

Water: Tap water in Addis Ababa is safe t o drink. There are also local mineral waters, which are cheap and refreshing. The city is endowed with relaxing and refreshing natural hot springs (Filwuha).

Power: Electricity supply is 220 volts, 50 cycles .

+++ make Addis Ababa one of
five Africa's preferable
tourist destination by developing +++
tourist attractions.

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