Click for
Eastern Africa World Edition (PDF). Download to Desktop

Events in Ethiopia
Horseback Rides
Tourism Minister
News Release .
Photo Archives
Mama Ethiopia
Millennium Celebration
Millennium Website
I am Ethiopia
Personal Profiles
US- Ethiopia Trade
Advertisers Index

Ethiopia Index
Addis Ababa
Bahir Dar
Rift Valley
South Ethiopia
Arts and Crafts
Coffee History
Fashion Shows
Felasha Village
First Impressions
Oldest Human
River Adventures
Sheraton Addis
Thirteen Months
Tour Itinerary
USA- Ethiopia
Trade Missions
Wine & Roses

Millennium Souvenir
Yearbook Sponsors
Ankober Palace Lodge
Axum Hotels
Ethiopian Airlines
Dinknesh Tours
Ghion Travel & Tours
Greenland Tours
Hadar Tours Plc.
Mama Ethiopia Project
Midroc Technology Group
Noble Conventions & Tours
Rainbow Exclusive Car Rental
& Tour Services
Rainbow- Corporate
Page (1) Page 2
Ras Hotels
Red Jackal Tours
Sheraton Addis Hotel
Smiling Ethiopia Travel
NTO Tours
Omo Tours
Timeless Ethiopia Tour
Trans Nation Airways
Travel Ethiopia PLC
USA Embassy,
Canadian Embassy
Be a Millennium Edition
sponsor e-mail now!

Air Travel
Ethiopian Airlines

Culture and Tourism
Millennium (1)
Millennium (2)
Google Links

Original ATA News Release
2007 Congress Agenda

The place to ride horses in Ethiopia'
by Yves Strranger

OPEN DAY to be held on the 16th of December: love horses? Come and see us. Just curious? Come and see us too!

DIRECTIONS: once off the ring road to the west of Addis Ababa, follow the new Ambo road for roughly 16 kms. You'll then see the first sign for the Menagesha Cheshire Centre on your right (before the first greenhouses). At the second Cheshire sign, turn off the main road and follow the little asphalt track which winds up towards the Cheshire Centre. As soon as you enter the gate, Menagesha Stables is the whitewashed building to your left.


Menagesha Stables is the creation of Yves Stranger, a Franco-British graft on the old soil of Ethiopia. Yves has been working as a teacher in Ethiopia for five years and has been riding since the age of ten, when he developed a passion for all things equestrian. He is also a free lance journalist and photographer, with credits in CNN Traveler, African Geographic and The Guardian. Having developed a passion for Ethiopia, Yves Stranger has decided to combine the best of both worlds in these stables: horse riding at the heart of Ethiopia.

At Menagesha Stables you can go for a two hour jaunt in the surrounding countryside, among the local people at work with the cycle of the seasons and their crops. You can also come on our two day rides to the forest of Menagesha Suba, founded by the 15th century emperor Zara Jacob, or ride out to the old imperial capital of Ancobar on the edge of the Ethiopian escarpment during one of our week long treks.

The stables, just twenty kilometers from the capital, but already embedded in the rolling Ethiopian countryside, are housed in the grounds of the Cheshire polio centre for children. The children ride with Menagesha Stables several times a week. This is a fun activity for them and also a time in which they can forget their legs and be proud of striking out, two meters above ground. The Cheshire centre is a superbly run place in a superb setting, which you can also visit when you come to the stables.

Menagesha Stables mean to become a centre of excellence in horsemanship as well as a breeding centre, and the place to go for equestrian tourism in Ethiopia. The Stables have ten permanent horses, all of which are well cared for, well fed and well trained. They are a mix of Abyssinian Pony and of Emperor Haile Selassié's stables in which one found a cocktail of Lipizzaner, Arab and race horse.

Whether you prefer a short ride to see Ethiopia at a leisurely pace, or you'd like the charm of an overnight in a century old forest, or the adventure of a week long trek to Ethiopia's 19th century capital on the escarpment, if you want to mix horses and Ethiopia, Menagesha Stables is the place to go.

• Short horse rides

These horse rides are taken in the rollicking hills around Menagesha town, just twenty kilometers from Addis Ababa. You're only thirty minutes from the capital on a good asphalt road but already in some of Ethiopia's most beautiful countryside. The volcanic plug of Menagesha, with its orthodox churches, juniper forest and wildlife &endash;much easier to get closer to on horseback- is one destination. The lake of Gefersa and its migrating birds, even the Entoto hills above the city, are all a short gallop away. And then, there are the unlimited vistas of the highlands, perfect horse riding country, where you can ride out to a cattle market or take a break in the local version of the country pub.

AVAILABILITY: immediate and on-going; a phone call or email is recommended.

RECOMMENDED RIDING LEVEL: beginner to proficient.

• Two day treks, with an overnight in the medieval forest of Menagesha Suba

Ride out over the Ethiopian Highlands above the small town of Holeta, through fields of teff, corn and barley. Stop to chat with peasants plowing and harvesting their crops and have a drink of tella &endash;local brewed beer- or a munch of kollo &endash;roasted barley grain: you'll discover the passing of the seasons that govern people's lives at the suitably slow pace of a horse. We'll be spending the night in one of Ethiopia's best kept secrets: the forest of Menagesha Suba.

The forest is part commercial plantation &endash;dominated by Eucalyptus- but the core of the forest is made up of century old junipers. It's Ethiopia's medieval conservationist, the 15th century emperor Zara Jacob, alarmed at the deforestation of his realm, who planted its first saplings. The forest has an abundant wildlife with Giant African Forest Hog, Vervet Monkeys, baboon, leopards and antelope. It also boasts a diverse birdlife with several Ethiopian endemics.

We'll spend the night here &endash;getting up at the crack of dawn for those who'd like to try to spot some animals- before setting of over the ridge of an ancient volcano and setting our sights on the church of Menagesha Maryam, where we'll have a picnic, before reaching the stables in the afternoon.

AVAILABILITY: available on demand or by program. Please email or phone.

RECOMMENDED RIDING LEVEL: proficient or some knowledge. Total beginners not advised.

• Long treks

Our long treks will take place between Menagesha and Ancobar. This is the route 19th century travelers took as they made their way up from the Red Sea by way of the Sultanat of Tadjourah, through the Danakil Depression, before reaching the crisp heights of Ancobar, only to discover that the emperor… had moved his capital: first to Entoto, then to Addis Ababa proper, as we now know it.

The route will take us over hill, along river, and across plains where everybody goes on foot or horseback to this day. This has to be some of the most perfect riding country in the world, similar to the plateaus of Mongolia in their depth, vastness and ever changing light. Vast plains of grass, full of vaster herds of cattle, will be the atypical Ethiopian landscape to which we'll set our hoof beat. We'll pitch our tents under the Abyssinian skies and set off at dawn for the ever expanding horizons.

The horses, a hardy mix of Abyssinian Pony and of Emperor Haile Selassie's stable, are well accustomed to the altitude &endash;close to 3 000 meters high- and energetic and brave horses with a good heart. On the way, we'll see orthodox churches, and the rhythms and mores of the true Ethiopian countryside with its inhabitant's simple life. The horse, here the most normal form of transport, is the ideal way to slowly penetrate the aged beauty of a millennia old way of life.

AVAILABILITY: first one week treks starting in January. Around the 22nd of January (exact date to be confirmed; please email or phone and enquire).



Menagesha Tours

Contact person: Yves Stranger

Tel: (251 1) 09 11 10 26 09

Tel: (251 1) 09 11 10 26 18


Po Box 409 27, Addis Ababa