Gheralta: rock-hewn churches of North East Ethiopia

The rock churches of Tigrai are found in Gheralta, Tsaeda Imba, and Atsbidera. Some of the churches are dated as early as 5th century – 800 years before Lalibela, others were built, or rather carved, much later – and they are dated around 15th – 17th c. These churches are the greatest of the historical – cultural heritages of the Ethiopian people.

Gheralta boasts such great churches as Abune Yemata (Guh), Mariam Korkor, Debretsion (Abune Abraham), Yohannes Maequddi, Abune Gebre Mikael and Selassie Degum.  The scenery of Gheralta is spectacular, especially the view of the graceful Mount Gheralta.

Also included in the program is an excursion to the Debre Damo monastery (men only), founded in the 6th ctntury by Ethiopian Saint Abuna Aregawi. In the territory of this monastery there is the oldest standing church in Ethiopia.