Day 4 in the Land of the Devil

Today we are very excited, after visiting Longya, Lake Afrera and Erta Ale, we are going to see one of the most remote places on Earth: Dallol (Ethiopia Itinerary, click here).

After crossing the salt flat with our car, we are at the beginning of our hike. Passing through different landscapes formed by volcanic activity we get to the small hill at the rim of the springs. Here it is breathtaking, one of the most fascinating place i have ever seen. In front of us a spectacular view: fumaroles and colorful hot springs, ground water bubbles up leaving colorful minerals behind which form amazing structures. Dallol is 116 meter below sea level, one of the lowest and hottest places in the world.

Danakil depression in Dallol, Ethiopia
Danakil depression in Dallol, Ethiopia

We walk in the middle of the springs for 1 hour, then, because of the hot temperature and the exhalations we are breathing in, we must leave this alluring place. Once at the car, close to the springs , we get and visit an area with salt made pillars. Walking here and look at this old odd shape salt formations is something special.

Dallol spring, Danakil
Dallol spring, Danakil
Dallol spring, Danakil
Dallol spring, Danakil

In the afternoon we visit another sulphur spring and specially Asale Lake, a salt flat where we meet the salt workers and the merchants. We are very impressed observing the Afar people cut the salt using at first a shovel, then a big wooden stick to take away the salt slab and in the end shape and load it on the camels caravans.

Salt workers, Dallol
Salt workers, Dallol
Camel caravan, Dallol
Camel caravan, Dallol

On our way back to Ahmad Ela we can see many camel caravans leaded by these invincible people that , with no fear, defy one of the most inhospitable and ”hard to live” places on the Earth. Our last thought is that we were so lucky to see this land still stuck in the past, where certainly a day , camels and old tools will make space to the modernity of trucks and up to date equipments.

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