Hamlin 17 Day Ethiopian Adventure 2019

The only insider's tour of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia.

Experience the Great Ethiopian Run.

Raise vital funds for life-changing work.

Challenge Highlights

  • Travel to Ethiopia with Team Hamlin
  • Take part in one of the best events in Africa: The Great Ethiopian Run
  • Visit the famous Fistula Hospital
  • Head north to eco lodge in Kossoye Mountain area
  • Visit the anicent capital of Gondar
  • Enjoy Lake Tana and Blue Nile Falls
  • Visit the amazing churches of Lalibela


This is a trip of a LIFETIME and one of only two insider trips to Ethiopia with Team Hamlin.

The Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation is an independent charity established in Australia to raise funds for Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia and other partners using the Hamlin Model of Care to eradicate obstetric fistula. Over nearly 60 years, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia has treated over 50 000 women who have suffered one of the most horrific injuries – obstetric fistula. Find out more at hamlin.org.au

On this trip, you will be visiting the healthcare network of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia and meeting key staff and patients. You will visit the Hamlin College of Midwives and Desta Mender, the rehabilitation and reintegration facility for longer-term patients, as well as meet Hamlin midwives in action at a rural health clinic.

You will be immersed in Ethiopian culture with a visit to the tranquil island monasteries of Lake Tana and a trip to the Blue Falls. You will also see the Bullets to Beads jewellery range being handmade in the mountains, visit the largest market in East Africa and much more.

The trip concludes with the International 10K fun run. You'll be running (or walking or dancing) 10km, at altitude, against Ethiopians. This is a fantastic way to celebrate the final day of the trip.

By coming on this trip, you will be supporting some of the most marginalised women in the world.

Challenge Grade

The touring element of this trip visits remote areas where facilities are often basic. These adventure tours will often involve long journeys and rough roads. To enjoy these adventures we suggest reasonable fitness and health, a moderately active lifestyle and a positive attitude. Suggested preparation: Two or three times a week, we recommend you walk on undulating terrain for an hour or more, for at least 3 months prior to departure.

We suggest that you refer to a fitness coach to establish what type of fitness regime you’ll require to complete (running or walking) the 10km Great Ethiopian Run.

You can refer to ethiopianrun.org for information about the run.


This evening we will board our Emirates flight to Dubai. Departure time will be advised once registered and we can book flights depending on where you live in Australia.

Meals:  Nil

Arrive in Dubai and connect with Emirates flight from Australia, connect with Emirates EK 723. Depart Dubai at 10:30 Arrive Addis Ababa at 13:30. Upon arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, you will be met by our local Ethiopian guide and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon we will visit historical sites in Addis Ababa including the National Museum. Time depending we will also visit Mount Entoto which rises up to an altitude of 3200 meters and offers the panoramic view of the metropolis. In the evening we will enjoy dinner at our hotel in Addis Ababa.

Meals:  D

After breakfast we visit the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital. Many people find a visit to the iconic hospital to be a profound experience. We will enjoy a tour of the grounds followed by lunch hospital staff. Keep in mind that this is a fistula hospital and patient privacy is very important. In the evening we will enjoy dinner at one of the most fabulous cultural restaurants in Addis Ababa.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we fly to Lalibela and explore one of the most amazing ancient cities in Ethiopia. Lalibela sits on the Ethiopian plateau, at an altitude of 2,600 metres above sea level.

Meals:  B,L,D

Lalibela has monolithic churches that were built in the 12th century and are carved out of the local pink granite rock, they have been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage. The whole day will be dedicated to visiting the first and the second group of rock hewn churches. Each church has a unique architectural style; all are superbly carved and most of them are decorated with well-preserved paintings.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we drive to Gondar and explore one of the most amazing ancient cities in Ethiopia. Enroute we will make stops to stretch our legs and meet the locals.

Meals:  B,L,D

Gondar was once the capital of the Ethiopian empire. It is now one of the country's largest cities, with architecture dating back to the sixteenth century. We take time this afternoon to tour these castles and churches, including the Royal Palace Enclosure, Emperor Fasilidas’ Bath and the beautiful church of Gebre Birhan Selassie. In the evening we have dinner and traditional dance restaurant.

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, we will visit the beautiful church of Debre Birhan Selassie. We will then have a short stop at the village of Woleka, which was once inhabited by the Ethiopian Black Jews. Driving through Ethiopia is fascinating. After we visit the village, we drive 30 kilometers in our air conditioned, private 4WD convoy to Kossoye. We will stay in an eco-lodge which is set in a jungle with panoramic mountain views. In the afternoon we will participate in a casual cooking lesson to sample the local cuisine

Meals:  B,L,D

Today you have the option of a walk or explore the Kossoye Eco Lodge grounds. From Kossoye we will walk 10km to the village of Wunania. We will get the opportunity to admire the beautiful landscape and see the Gelada baboons, as well as different bird life. After the 5 hours walk, we will reach Wunania, where we will visit the village before being picked up by our vehicle and driven back to Kossoye.

Meals:  B,L,D

In the morning we will drive south approx 4 hours to Bahir Dar, a tranquil regional city on the shore of Lake Tana, the largest lake in Ethiopia and source of the Blue Nile. On the way we will visit a Hamlin midwifery clinic, meet one of the graduates of the Hamlin College of Midwives and see first-hand the challenges of maternity care in Africa. Late afternoon we visit the local Bahir Dar market, this is a great way to see the locals selling everything from food and spices to large traditional earth-ware.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we will take a boat trip on Lake Tana. The islands are home to historic churches. We will visit Ura Kidane Mihret church on the Zeghie peninsula to absorb its rich history and stunning frescoes. Keep an eye out for the many hippos that live in Lake Tana. Afternoon we plan a visit the Hamlin Fistula Bahir Dar Centre and meet with Dr Bitew, our surgeon and his nursing team.

Meals:  B,L,D

It is a rough and ready two-hour drive on dirt roads to the stunning Blue Nile Falls from Barhir Dar but it's worth the trip! The falls, also known as Tis Issat, meaning smoking water, create smoke-like mist of water droplets.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we will visit the world-famous Hamlin College of Midwives, tour the grounds as well as visit Desta Mender (Joy Village) our farm and training centre for long term fistula patients. Lunch is at the Juniper cafe; a cafe run by past fistula patients. You’ll get to meet staff and residents and learn about our education, reintegration and micro finance programs. After lunch we will head to our favourite place - Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital to spend some time with patients and staff.

Meals:  B,L,D

We visit the unforgettable Red Terror Museum and learn about a murderous period of Ethiopian History that began in the same year that the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital was opened. After lunch we then head out to the mountain community where the women there create the Hamlin "Bullets to Beads" jewellery which is made from melted down bullet casings found on Ethiopian farm land. In the afternoon we experience the bustle of the Mercato, the largest market in East Africa, where a colourful mix of people from the surrounding region gather. This evening we have been invited by the Great Ethiopian Run organisers for a charity pasta dinner. It's time to carb load!

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning you will be transferred to the start line of the Great Ethiopian Run. Good Luck! The event is an experience of a lifetime, participating with 35,000 Ethiopians and some of the best athletes in the world, in the 10km international race. The atmosphere is festive and fun but those who want to take this event seriously certainly can. The rest of the afternoon will be at your leisure. In the evening we will enjoy a farewell celebration dinner at Addis Ababa Makush Gallery.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we visit Sabahar a fair trade Ethiopian natural textile workshop, with on site weavers, spinners and dyers that produces uniquely designed, hand made cotton and silk textiles. Scarves, shawls, table linens, cushions, throws and towels, great way to spend the last of your Ethiopian Birr. We will check out of our hotel rooms at midday before lunch at local Art Gallery and transfer to Addis Ababa airport for your flight home. Depart Emirates 724 at 1615 arrives Dubai at 2120. Depending on where you live in Australia you will overnight on a Emirates flight to Australia.

Meals:  B,L

This morning we arrive back home in Australia after a life-changing journey to one of the most fascinating countries in the world. What a wild ride !

Meals:  Nil

What's Included

  • Travel with a member of Team Hamlin from Australia's HQ
  • International airfares
  • Entry fee for Great Ethiopian Run
  • All meals - including coffee/tea and water each meal
  • Centrally located hotel in Addis Ababa
  • Coach transport in Addis Ababa
  • Private 4WD transport in northern Ethiopia
  • Visit the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital and meet key personnel
  • Experienced English speaking local Ethiopian guide
  • All activities, adventures and sightseeing as per itinerary
  • Domestic flight from Addis Ababa to Lalibela and Bahir Dar to Addis Ababa
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Pre-race pasta dinner
  • Celebration dinner

What's Not Included

  • Visa
  • Soft drinks, alcohol and bottled water
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls and laundry
  • Travel insurance
  • Tips
  • Vaccinations

What You Carry

  • In your daypack you will need to carry warm clothing, water, camera and personal items such as sunscreen.

Fundraising Impact

Each team member on a Hamlin Ethiopian Adventure commits to raising $6,000 or more for the Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation. While this is a large fundraising goal, the impact this funding has is remarkable.

$6,000 could provide sixteen women with life changing fistula surgery to repair their childbirth injuries. It could also provide two midwifery students with a one year scholarship for their studies, a key part of Hamlin Fistula’s prevention strategy for eradicating fistula forever.

With the support of Team Hamlin, this goal is possible and life-changing. By breaking it down, it becomes more achievable - if 60 people give you $100, you're there! Contact Team Hamlin on [email protected] or by phone on 02 9440 7001 for more information on fundraising.

Travel Dates

Other Challenge Costs

Optional Single Supplement:USD$380 
Minimum Charity Donation - Fundraising:USD$4800 
Minimum Charity Donation - Fundraising:USD$4800 


Hamlin Ethiopian Adventure

Fast Facts

Trip Dates: DepartReturn
 3 Nov 201919 Nov 2019
Duration:17 Days
Activities:Great Ethiopian Run
Insider's tour of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia
Grade:Adventure touring  Click for more information
Trip Code:HF6
Registration Fee:USD$160
Travel Cost:USD$160

Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation raises funds and awareness for the work of renowned Australian obstetrician Dr Catherine Hamlin and her team at Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia, a healthcare network with its main hospital in Addis Ababa, five regional hospitals, the Hamlin College of Midwives and Desta Mender, a rehabilitation and reintegration facility.