Horn of Africa

djibouti coast

If there is a noble continent, it is Africa. Noble, with a lot of riches and a lot of history, and at the same time, so plundered, so forgotten. The African reality has always hit us and no one seems to care about finding a definitive solution.

In fact, the so-called Horn of Africa it is one of the poorest regions in the world. People die of hunger, here where the human being saw life thousands and thousands of years ago.

the horn of africa

Africa

It is the region that It is located at the mouth of the Red Sea in the Indian Ocean., off the Arabian Peninsula. It is a huge peninsula that today is geopolitically divided into four countries: Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia. It has been baptized with the name "horn" because it has a certain triangular shape.

The political history of this part of the continent is very hectic, there is no stable political or economic regime and that is due to the presence of foreign powers, before and today. today, because It is part of the oil tanker route. Blessing or curse.

puntland

But regardless of the conflicts that its great geographical location brings to it on the world map, the truth is that the weather doesn't help and there are usually tremendous droughts that negatively affect the lives of the 130 million people inhabit the Horn of Africa.

African landscapes

History tells us that in this part of the African continent the Kingdom of Aksum developed between the XNUMXst and XNUMXth centuries AD. It knew how to maintain commercial exchanges with India and the Mediterranean and in some way it was a meeting point between the Romans and the enormous and rich Indian subcontinent. Later, with the fall of the Roman Empire and the spread of Islam, the kingdom, which had eventually converted to Christianity, began to decline.

Problems and crises were and are common currency here. It is common to always talk about Ethiopia when reference is made to the Horn of Africa and this is because more than 80% of the population lives in this country. It is the second most populous state in Africa, behind Nigeria, and there are always political problems that have ended in war more than once. And that is added to the natural disasters typical of the region.

Ethiopia

In economic terms, Ethiopia is dedicated to the cultivation of coffee and 80% of its exports fall on this resource. Eritrea is basically a country dedicated to agriculture and livestock; Somalia produces bananas and cattle and Djibouti is a service economy.

This year, 2022, is being recorded in the Horn of Africa the worst drought in the last four decades. It affects more than 15 million people in various countries. They have no water after four very bad rainy seasons, and if the situation continues it is likely that not 15 but 20 million people will be affected by the situation.

Tourism in the Horn of Africa

somalia coast

Visiting the Horn of Africa is a possibility and there are tours to Ethiopia, Somalia, Somaliland and Djibouti. Somalia has been isolated for two decades due to its great political instability, but it is still allowed to organize small tour groups to the capital. Somaliland is a territory not recognized by the rest of the world, despite the fact that it has maintained de facto independence for 29 years. Did you know him?

For its part, Djibouti is one of the smallest and least known countries in Africa, with dormant volcanoes, beautiful lakes and forests. Small but beautiful, we could say. Both Somaliland and Djibouti are on the very edge of the African continent, a stone's throw from the Red Sea coast.

Djibouti saline lake

So let's talk about travel options. One is to take a sightseeing tour that starts at Djibouti to discover the beauty of Lake Abbe, where travelers spend the night on the shore of this saline lake whose waters change color, and is surrounded by huge and fantastic rocks. From here the journey continues Lac Assal, the lowest point above sea level in Africa, where salt is collected. And from there, the journey continues to discover the Ottoman settlement of Tadjourah over the coast.

Afterwards, the journey continues across the desert towards the tremendous and fantastic landscapes of Somaliland, a very different land from neighboring Somalia. If you like cave art, Las Geel is going to blow your mind. Very little is known in the world and it is beautiful. Also visit the historical buildings of the Red Sea, in the berbera port. The population of this country is friendly, open-door, so travelers can explore the markets of Hargeisa, the Sheikh mountains…

rock art in africa

Somaliland is in its own way, wild, home to nomadic communities and has changed little over the centuries. It is true that it is not for everyone, but if you are an enthusiast of Africa, it is a destination that cannot be missed on your route. It is worth saying that there are free elections every five years.

Mogadishu

For his part, the trip to Somalia concentrates on spending a few days in Mogadishu, the capital and the largest city in the country. Once, between the '70s and '80s, before the civil war that broke out in 1991, the city was considered one of the best cities in the world, with its classical architecture, its beautiful beaches, its seaport, a union between Africa and Asia… She is called the White Pearl of the Indian Ocean and you can visit the presidential palace, the Jubek tomb and even talk with university students from the University of Juba.

puntland

Another destination can be Puntland, a proclaimed autonomous state of Somalia which is in the northeast of the self-proclaimed Republic of Somaliland that we talked about earlier. Puntland or Puntland was part of Italian Somalia in colonial times, but in 1998, it made the decision to become independent. Of course the situation is conflictive, but if you like adventure you can go. It has a long and beautiful coastline, a pleasant warm climate and beautiful beaches. It has access to the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean and is beautiful to sail but… there are pirates.

landscapes of the horn of africa

And what about Ethiopia? In this beautiful country, travelers can meet Harar, a World Heritage Site, with wild hyenas and old streets, the Dire Dawa Market that works inside an old walled city, and of course, the capital Addis Ababa. 

The truth is that today you can visit the Horn of Africa, do tourism, always on tour and carefully. The guided tours have security operations and I think you can't think of another way to get to know this part of Africa.

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