15 Fascinating Destinations for Travel Photography

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2: Ethiopia

Two painted boys in Ethiopia's Omo Valley (Bryan Peterson)

“In all the world, which other country can you claim to be eight years younger immediately upon arrival? It’s Ethiopia, the same country where coffee was ‘born’. Ethiopia operates with a 13-month calendar. Outside of Ethiopia, it is the year 2017, but inside Ethiopia’s borders, it is now 2009.

“You’ll find lots of energy at the Merkato market in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. Arguably the largest outdoor market in Africa, it is intensely colourful, immensely diverse and truly chaotic, making it a street photographer’s dream.

“Often called ‘the rooftop of Africa’, Ethiopia has the most mountain ranges of any African country, and notably the Danakil Depression, an area of volcanoes and colourful salt lakes. Despite it being the hottest place on earth, it is a landscape photographer’s paradise.

“I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the 11 rock-cut churches of Lalibela, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and another must-visit, the fourth Holiest City of Islam, the walled city of Harar, a city even more colourful than Burano, Italy.

“No trip to Ethiopia would be complete without a trip to the Omo Valley where you will find wildlife, birds and an opportunity to go even further back in time by entering the many tribal villages of the Mursi, Hamer and Karo tribes, to name a few, and witnessing their centuries-old traditions.

“In all of my world travels, 89 countries to date, I have yet to find any place where the human spirit is more possessed with an unflinching and fierce determination than Ethiopia.”

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