“LANDSCAPES” IS HARDLY the right word at times. Even moonscape seems an understatement. The Danakil Depression is abut 150m below sea level and the hottest place on planet earth. Entry is by guided convoy tours only, and like the views, the roads are like nowhere else either.
The Afar tribe who live here and naturally hardy people, and they don’t appreciate outsiders, even Ethiopian ones.
The frontier town of Berhale bars the entry to the Danakil Depression.
It is a wonderland of bizarre landscapes that look like they fell from outer space.
Pungent sulphuric lakes at Dallol are amongst the highlights of the area.
Greens, browns and yellows solidify into terraces.
Abondoned machinery -from what industry, I have no idea.
Calcified formation lie on the crusty surface around Dallol.
We rested here in 53 degree celsius heat, while we waited for the army escort to take us to the Erta Ale volcano.
A jackal runs along side our jeep. We also saw Somali ostrich.
More surreal images from Dallol.
Visitors are not allowed to enter the Danakil indpendently. Ethiopian security travel with the convoy.
How people survive out here is beyind my imagination. Certaintly not by growing tomatoes.
Vast salt lakes provide income for the Afar tribesman, who take their camel trains 14 days to market. The Afar are hostile to outsiders, and having killed tourists in the recet past.
The dangers and conditions do not stop a small but steady number of visitor coming for the wondrous scenery.
Berhale is a hot, dry, dusty border twon, where you really must make your own fun.
This was our escort for the Erta Ale volcano leg of the tour. They are not there for good looks. It was around here that tourists were killed in 2012 and 2017.
Erta Ale, one of six lava lakes in the world. The hike to the crater is made at night because of the heat. We camped nearby, descending in the morning.
The heat coming off the lake was something else.