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The Horn of Africa, land of enchantment and danger.

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Djibouti coast

If there is a noble continent, it is Africa. Noble, with a lot of wealth and a lot of history, and at the same time, so plundered, so forgotten. The African reality has always struck 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 are starving here where human beings 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 into the Indian Ocean., off the Arabian Peninsula. It is a huge peninsula which today is geopolitically divided into four countries: Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia. It was baptized with the name “horn” because it has a certain triangular shape.

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

Puntland

But whatever conflicts its great geographical location brings to it on the world map, the truth is that the weather is not helping and there are usually huge droughts which negatively affect the lives of 130 million people live in the Horn of Africa.

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African landscapes

History teaches us that in this part of the African continent, the Kingdom of Aksum developed between the 1st and 7th centuries AD. It knew how to maintain commercial exchanges with India and the Mediterranean and was in a way 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 finally converted to Christianity, began to decline.

Problems and crises were and are commonplace here. It is common to always talk about Ethiopia when reference is made to the Horn of Africa and it 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 still political issues that have ended in war more than once. And this is in addition 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 are based on this resource. Eritrea is essentially a country dedicated to agriculture and livestock; Somalia produces bananas and cattle and Djibouti is a service economy.

This year, 2022is registered in the Horn of Africa worst drought in four decades. It affects more than 15 million people in various countries. They have run out of 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

Somali coast

Visiting the Horn of Africa is a possibility and there are tours in Ethiopia, Somalia, Somaliland and Djibouti. Somalia has been isolated for two decades due to its high political instability, but it is still allowed to organize small tour groups in the capital. Somaliland is a territory unrecognized by the rest of the world, despite having retained its de facto independence for 29 years. Did you know him?

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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, you might say. Somaliland and Djibouti both lie on the edge of the African continent, a stone’s throw from the Red Sea coast.

Djibouti salt lake

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

Then, the journey continues through the desert towards the grandiose and fantastic landscapes of somaliland, a land very different from neighboring Somalia. If you love rock art, Las Geel will 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 port of Berbera. The population of this country is welcoming, open door, so travelers can explore the markets of Hargeisa, the Sheikh mountains…

rock art in africa

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

Mogadishu

For its part, the trip to Somalia concentrates on spending a few days in Mogadishu, the capital and largest city of the country. In the past, 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 classic architecture, its beautiful beaches, its seaport, a union between the Africa and Asia… It is called the White pearl from the Indian Ocean and you can visit the Presidential Palace, Jubek’s Tomb and even chat with university students from the University of Juba.

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puntland

Another destination can be Puntland, a proclaimed autonomous state of Somalia which is in the northeast of the self-declared Republic of Somaliland that we talked about earlier. Puntland or Puntland was part of Italian Somalia during the colonial era, but in 1998 it made the decision to become independent. Of course, the situation is confrontational, but if you like adventure, you can go for it. 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 about Ethiopia? In this beautiful country, travelers can meet Harar, a World Heritage Sitewith wild hyenas and old streets, the Dire Dawa market that operates inside an old walled city, and of course, the capital Addis Ababa.

What is certain is that today you can visit the Horn of Africa, go sightseeing, always on tour and carefully. Guided tours have security operations and I think you can’t think of any other way to know this part of Africa.

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