Located in the Danakil Depression in a remote area subject to the highest average temperatures on the planet, Dallol is one of the most amazing sites to be seen on earth. The effervescent colors and the surreal formations make Dallol otherworldly. The volcano encompasses Dallol Mountain and several other features in the vicinity, such as the crater near the “Black Mountain”. Dallol is definitely one of the most commendable stops in Ethiopia for the adventure traveler.
Literally translated as “the mountain that smokes”, Ertale is a breathtaking occurrence in the middle of the desert. The best time to visit the Ertale is at dawn to avoid excessive heat. The walk from the nearby village to the volcano may take 3 hours. From the edge of the crater, one can admire the exciting natural spectacle. Several craters emit fumes, which is a sign of massive volcanic activity. One can also explore the crater where there are multicolored formations of lava and ash. It is especially impressive in the evening because of the bubbling lava that is only visible at night. This is one of the 3 volcanoes in the world that is constantly active.
Lake Afrera is also known as Lake Giulietti, the name Raimondo Franchetti bequeathed it, after the Italian explorer Giuseppe Maria Giulietti who was slain by Afars southwest of the lake. The single island in Lake Afrera, Franchetti Island (also known as “Deset”) is located in the southern part of the lake and considered the lowest-lying island in the world.
Ahmed Ela is a plane of salt from which the dedicated people of Afar do some salt mining during the winter. During summer the village is almost abandoned because of the inhospitable nature of the temperature. A dazzling short trail reaches the white desert. In the middle of the plane lies an outcrop of reddish rock, a concretion formed by sulfate salt of magnesium. Around here, there are seasonally hundreds of camel caravans which serve as a means of transporting the blocks of salt. Truly an exceptional site.
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