Welcome to Omo Valley
Omo and Mago National Parks are located in the south western parts of Ethiopia in Omo Valley, approximately 870 kilometers southwest of Addis Ababa. Although an airstrip was recently built near the park on the Mui River, this parks are not easily reachable.
Omo Valley is mostly unspoiled, where many different tribes lives for centuries in complete isolation. Omo National Parks offer suitable camp sites, where you can find buffalo, giraffe, zebras, hartebeest, topi, and oryx.
Omo region is famous for white water rafting, as it tumbles its way through a steep valley before entering Lake Turkana. There are variety of landscapes in Omo, tamarind forest and savannah, where you can spot Colobuss monkeys and flocks of colourful birds. On the savannah slopes against mountain backdrop, you will find waterbucks and bushbuck. At a riverside camp, you will encounter waterfowl, hippos, antelope, baboons and lions.
Omo River were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980, after the discovery of the earliest known fossil fragments of Homo Sapiens that have been dated 200 000 years old.
Great Rift Valley of Africa cuts a deep and prominent lasceration in the landscape, marked by some beautiful and tranquil lakeland scenery. Omo Valley is certainly a paradise for the enthusiasts of wild animals and birds, and to witness distinctive lifestyle and fascinating unique culture of the tribes living within the protected area around the Omo River.|
Omo and Mago National Parks are on the opposite sides of the Omo River, in the far south west near the Kenyan and Sudanese borders. They are two of the least developed national parks in East Africa.
Any visit to Omo and Mago National Parks should be treated as an expedition, the parks are most attractive to visitors who want to see holistic picture of African wilderness as it was before the colonial era.
Culture of Omo people is steeped in rich tradition and colourful history. Omo River adventure provides an opportunity to visit indigenous tribes along the way, the valley is a home for an indigenious groups: Hamar, Mursi, Konso, Karo, Geleb, Bume and Surma people, each having their own distinctive and unique features.
The largest and least isolated of the groups is the Konso people,
Hamar are a semi nomadic people, wherever there is enough grass for their cattle to graze, they will stay for a few months, putting up their round huts, Hamar have been living this way for generations.
Many of the tribes have opened their villages to tourists, these villages may have lost some of their appeal and charm, but the tribes do nevertheless continue to live in these villages much the same way as before, and they provide genuine insight into local culture. It is also worth visiting one of the weekly markets at one of the local villages, this is when the villages are most active, you can also purchase local african crafts.
Omo peoples have a different cultural background from other Ethiopians, until recently the area was so remote that many of these people were unaware that Ethiopia existed.