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Health and medical

The possession of a valid Yellow Fever vaccination certificate is no longer mandatory but visitors coming from countries where Yellow Fever has been reported may be asked. Immunisation for Hepatitis A and B, Tetanus, Typhoid and Polio is recommended. Malaria: in many sites malaria is not a problem because of the elevation - this is true of Axum, Gondar and Lalibela for example, but it can occur in Bahir Dar at the end of the rainy season and after unseasonable rains. Lowland areas along the Awash River, the Omo Valley, Rift Valley and Gambella are subject to malaria outbreaks. Mosquitoes are constantly improving their resistence to the prophylactics on the market, so you should consult your doctor about the prescription. Alternatively, you can keep mosquitoes and other insects at bay with repellent creams and sprays. (Climatic changes and phenomena such as el-Nino has meant the appearance of malaria at unseasonable times, and its spread to areas previously malaria free.)

Food

The Ethiopian national dish consists of injera, a flat, circular pancake of fermented dough made from a grain seed called tef, on top of which are served different kinds of cooked meats, vegetables and pulses. The sauces are generally spiced with berbere, a blend of herbs and spices (including hot peppers) which gives Ethiopian food its characteristic taste. Vegetarians should try “fasting food” (for devout Ethiopian Orthodox Christians fast days make up more than half the year), a colourful spread of salads, vegetables and pulses, devoid of all meat and animal products.

One eats national dishes with the right hand (water for washing is usually brought to the table before the food is served), tearing off pieces of injera to pick up the “toppings”. Addis Ababa now boasts a wide variety of restaurants - you can effectively dine out in every continent of the world - and at hotels in tourist sites European style food such as pasta is always available. While in Addis Ababa, be sure to visit Road Runner Bar and Restaurant, sister company of Lambadina tours, for good mood, food and music. All kinds of food is served, including Ethiopian dishes and pizzas. Friday night in particular is “networking night”, when all kinds of contacts can be made. Road Runner is situated next to Demberwa Hospital, Haya Hulet.

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