About Us

A little Introduction

Welcome Ethiopia Tours was established in September 2015 as premium grade 1 tour operator in Ethiopia. The company has a head office in Addis Ababa and is fully licensed by the Ethiopian Ministry of Tourism and Culture under license number….
The fact that Welcome Ethiopia Tours is a new name amongst the local tour operators does not at all mean that we are inexperienced in delivering tours! In fact, the contrary is the case! Our Chief Tour Operator, XXXX may without exaggeration be called one of the most experienced tourist professionals in Ethiopia. xxx has xxxx years of experience and knows his country and the local hospitality industry like the back of his hand. XXX has also build up long-standing relationships with some of the best free-lance tour guides in Ethiopia. For each and every tour we carefully select our guide according to our high quality standards, specifically taking into consideration language skills, area knowledge, service-mindedness and years of experience.
We only use friendly, certified and service-minded experts, who are driven by their passion and pride to show you their country in the best light. Similar criteria apply to our drivers who must be fluent in English and show a long record of safely driving tourists around Ethiopia. The safety of our guests is absolutely key to us and a pillar of our business continuity.  While we want to provide our guest with genuine adventure tours, we would never put their safety at risk. Finally, we want to adhere to the core values of our Swiss management to what Switzerland has build up a reputation for around the world; meticulous planning, exact timing, reliability and high product quality.

What Makes Us Different

The local Ethiopian travel industry is growing at a very fast pace with new tour operator websites popping up almost daily. The problem with this situation is that it has become very difficult for interested individuals to find out what service and infrastructure are actually behind these websites, and if all of them are really in a position to guarantee your satisfaction and safety. Moreover, when browsing through most these websites you will encounter a myriad of itineraries offered. This certainly shows the great efforts and flexibility of many local tour operators, however, we simply feel that sometimes less is more!  Too many itineraries on the website can be more confusing than helpful for someone who doesn’t really know the country and its touristic highlights so well. For this reasons, Welcome Ethiopia Tours has decided to focus to for the time being only on the following 4 different modules which may be freely combined.

Module 1        Northern Historic Route (13 days)

Module 2        Southern Cultural and Tribal Admiration Route (12 days)

Module 3a      Extension to Module 1: Bale Mountain National Park (4 days)

Module 3b      Extension to Module 2: Bale Mountain National Park (4 days)

Module 4        Extension to Module 1 or 2: Awash National Park and Harar (5 days)

In return to our limited offer of group tours we have set ourselves the  target of becoming the best tour operator in Ethiopia on these itineraries! We believe that these 4 modules comprise most of Ethiopia’s highlights and are an excellent choice for everybody visiting the country for the first time. These tours have been carefully designed to offer an ideal balance between culture, heritage, adventure, wildlife and nature combined with maximum comfort and, whenever and wherever possible, a touch of luxury. They are also absolutely safe and we can cover most of the way with our own Toyota Hiace minibus. This is a 2015 model, 16-seater luxury minibus that we fill up to a maximum of only 8 passengers. In other words, you will have to 2 seats for yourself and guaranteed window view throughout the entire journey! Where local road conditions require it, we will temporarily change to 4x4 vehicles waiting for us at designated locations.
When it comes to restaurants and hotels we only use the best available infrastructure at each destination. Admittedly, the standard is not yet everywhere 5-stars like some of the lodges in Kenya or South Africa for instance. However, you will be surprised how good the standard has already become at most popular destinations.
You can be assured that travelling with us will be an experience of a lifetime for you. If not, we have clearly missed our target! It is always our ultimate goal that your expectations are not only met but exceeded every single day that you are with us!  We would be more than happy to welcome you soon and to discover together with you the real essence of Ethiopia!
Last but not least, let us state that an adventure trip to the Danakil depression, river rafting on the Blue Nile or trekking in the Simien or Bale Mountains are of course equally world class experiences! However, these trips are usually only suitable for the outdoor experienced and physically fit travelers who are also prepared to cope with a minimum of comfort. So please don’t get us wrong, we will be more than happy to consult with you and to assist you in putting together your  individual, tailor-made dream expedition. Particularly if you already have something specific in mind, we can and will be glad to organize it for you, but we do not feature such trips as our standard choice.

About the Founder

Nik Puppato

Nik Puppato

Owner and Managing Director

A warm welcome to Welcome Ethiopia Tours!  My name is Nik Puppato and I am a Swiss citizen who has embarked on this adventurous mission of helping to connect the international community with this beautiful country of Ethiopia. I visited Ethiopia for the first time in 2009, and since then the fascination for this incredibly diverse nation and its amazingly hospital people would never let me go again. Finally, I decided that Ethiopia was the right place for me to make one of my biggest dreams in life come true, to establish my own company. Previously, I worked for 15 years in the pharmaceutical industry holding various international management positions in the field of regulatory affairs. I was in charge of submitting pharmaceutical product documentation to Health Authorities around the world, including for one of the largest multinationals. As a trained regulatory officer I am not only used to pay attention to even smallest details but also to carefully evaluate costs, risks and benefits of a product. In this sense, I feel that my core responsibilities have not really that much changed in my new role as the general manager of Welcome Ethiopia Tours. I see it as my core task to make sure that you benefit to the maximum from your holidays at a fair and reasonable cost while enjoying the highest safety standards. By the way, talking about safety, the incredibly low criminality in Ethiopia was one of the main arguments that convinced me to relocate in 2015 from Basel to Addis Ababa.

Safety in Ethiopia

Today’s image of Ethiopia is by far not yet where it deserves to be. Too many of us still remember the long civil war and the dramatic famine in the 1980s, followed by the Eritrean-Ethiopian war from May 1998 to June 2000, forming one of the worst conflicts ever in the Horn of Africa. However, luckily times have changed, and today Ethiopia is without any doubt one of the most stable and safest countries in Africa. It is currently much safer to travel in Ethiopia than for instance in Kenya or South Africa which still attract far more tourists. Physical violence and the use of guns or knives are extremely rare. It is generally even safe for women to walk alone around Addis Ababa or in other places of the country.
Admittedly, there was a tragic incidence in 2012 when a group of tourists was killed in an assault in the Afar region, near the Eritrean border. However, this has so far remained an exceptional case and security has been even tightened since that sad occurrence. The stability and safety of Ethiopia has also become strategic to the international community, all the more as neighboring countries like Somalia remain fairly unstable. However, our tours operate far away from potential border conflicts with Somalia, Sudan or Eritrea. Moreover, the Ethiopian government is well aware that another incidence like the one in 2012 could easily bring tourism and with that the generation of the urgently needed foreign currency to an immediate standstill. Therefore, you may be even more assured that your safety is guaranteed at all times along the main touristic destinations. We will go out of our way to make sure that you return home safely, with unforgettable memories of a spiritual and peaceful country with amazing people.