HIGHLIGHTS Fri 2 Jan: Gondar, Mentewab's Palace

Friday, January 02, 2015
Gonder, Amhara, Ethiopia
Road back to Gondar

Back along the same route but it was all downhill so the trip back to Debark took only 30 minutes where we dropped the 2 scouts off.





Ploughshare Women's Craft Training Centre

Just 3 km before Gondar was the Ploughshare Women's Craft Training Centre where disadvantaged women come here for 3 months and then return to their villages with a skill and hopefully a source of income. Gas fired pottery with donated kilns from various embassies around the world. The bottle gas has to be imported from neighbouring Sudan.




Kuskuam Church

Mentewab's Palace was the last thing to see in Gondar. Located behind Kuskuam Church, Mentewab's Palace was built by Empress Mentewab after 1730.

All the time we were the only ones there while exploring the ruins. It was so peaceful here with the juniper and olive trees and even being so close to the centre of town, it was away from the hustle and bustle of Gondar. The view from this hill over Gondar is splendid with Fasilades Castle in the distance. I could just imagine the royals who lived here having a great view from their well-situated palaces over the surrounding landscape.

Next to Kuskuam Church were these tiny doll-sized mud-and-stick huts housing religious students while training to become monks or priests. Depending on their ability, some could be here for up to 10 + years learning. Several shared a tiny hut. They had to scavenger the local villages for leftover food. Teaching took place outdoor sitting on the stone seats.

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