Explore The Hottest Inhabited Place on Earth

Danakil Depression

Welcome to Danakil Depression

Set at the juncture of three tectonic plates, the Danakil is one of the world’s lowest-lying places, set mostly below sea level, and it officially ranks as the hottest inhabited place on earth, with an average daily maximum of 41°C. Much of the region comprises sun-cracked salt-flats that stretch like blinding-white crazy paving towards a shimmering flat horizon. However, the high level of tectonic activity means that more than 30 active volcanoes protrude from this stretch Great Rift Valley floor. These include the iconic Erta Ale, which has hosted a permanent lava flow since the late 19th century, and the Dallol Crater with its sulphurous pools enclosed by strange pastel-hued crystalline formations.

Things to see and Do

The Danakil’s top attraction is Erta Ale, a 613m-high shield volcano whose caldera of crumbling black rock contains world’s oldest permanent lava lake. Bubbling at temperatures of more than 1,000˚C, …
Dallol is a cinder cone volcano in the Danakil Depression, although its unique geology means it lacks any of the archetypal volcanic looks. Instead, Dallol is a canvas of bright green, reds, and …
Lake Karum (aka Lake Asale) and Lake Afrera (aka Lake Afdera) are the two hypersaline lakes in the Danakil Depression. Both are visited on most tours of the Danakil, with …

Suggested Tours

Day Trip to Dallol Danakil Depression

Daily trip Dallol Danakil Depression – Day trip from Mekele to Mekele – Dallol 04:00 AM – 05:00 PM You will set off early in the morning at 04:00 AM towards Dallol- via Berhale. You pass through a small town of Berhale where the camel caravan stops before they proceed to the northern highlands. En route you see many long camel caravans coming to the salt mine and others going out of the Danakil with their salt loaded camels.

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2 Days Trip Danakl Depresion

The Danakil Depression can be said to ‘begin’ here. It is one of the most inhospitable regions of the world, but is nonetheless spectacular, full of eye-catching colors, as in the sulfur springs. The desert has several points lying more than 100 meters (328 ft) below sea level; You pass through a small town of Berhale where the camel caravan stop before they proceed to the northern highlands. 

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3 Days Trip Danakl Depresion

We start our day by driving to Erta Ale (which means smoky mountain in Afar language). Erta Ale ranks one of the most alluring and physically challenging natural attractions anywhere in Ethiopia. It is a shield volcano with a base diameter of 30 km and 1km square caldera at its summit. Erta Ale contains the world’s only permanent lava lake. It is 613 meters, with a lava lake, one of only five in the world, at the summit. It is notable for being the longest existing lava lake, present since the early years of the twentieth century. (may not be as active as before and activity at flank eruption slows down.)

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Where to Stay

Accomodation in the Danakil Depression

Accommodation in the Danakil is as basic as it gets. Once you leave Mekele, you’re heading for one of the most remote and inhospitable environments on the planet, where 5* (or even 2*) hotels are a fantasy. It’s rough and ready, and that’s all part of the fun. No formal accommodation exists once in the Danakil, though basic camping shelters are available at Hamed Ela, Do Dom and the Erta Ale crater rim. You can camp at the hot springs on the west shore of Lake Afdera.