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Welcome to Ethiopia

Churchill street in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Construction in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Arat Kilo round about, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Country side in Ethiopia
Basket shop in Ethiopia
baskets made in Ethiopia
A spice shop, Ethiopia
Ethiopian coffee
Ethiopian coffee being brewed
plate of injera, Ethiopian cuisine
Ethiopia on the map

Ethiopia is located in the Horn of Africa and is bordered by Eritrea to the north and northeast, Djibouti and Somalia to the east, Sudan and South Sudan to the west, and Kenya to the south. Ethiopia is officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and is the second-most populous nation on the African continent after Nigeria, with over 120 million inhabitants. Addis Ababa is the capital city as well as the largest city in the country, with over 6 million people.

Ethiopia has more than 80 languages and over 200 dialects. Amharic or Amharigna is the official language of Ethiopia, but English is widely spoken in the cities. Local languages are encouraged to be taught in Ethiopian schools, but most international schools use English. The working languages of the national/regional governments may differ according to the regions. Other main languages include Oromigna and Tigrigna. Learning some Amharic, including the Ethiopian alphabet, is very useful.

Ethiopian alphabet
holiday crowd, Ethiopia

Ethiopian holidays include both Christian and Muslim holidays as well as national holidays. Ethiopia follows the Julian calendar, which means that the Christian holidays are on different dates than the Western Georgian calendar. Muslim holidays are lunar, following the position of the moon, and these dates change from year to year. Large celebrations take place around the country for Easter (Fasika) and Timket (Ephiphany), with roads being closed as people are out on the streets.

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