Welcoming Village Ways to the Simien Mountains

April 08, 2016

We are proud to be working alongside the Village Ways Partnership in Ethiopia, who have now brought their model of community tourism to the Simien Mountains, and we’re excited to see the impact that it will have on the remote villages they are involved with - Taga Mariam, Kalid Abo and Timbala - all situated at over 3,000m with amazing views of the surrounding hills and valleys.

Travellers now have the chance to trek in the heart of rugged landscapes and stay in authentic villages along the way, enjoying newly-built guesthouses (in the form of traditional, round stone huts, or tukuls) run by the host communities, with all benefits going directly to them.

The guesthouses are positioned off the well-trodden routes to bring tourism to new regions, yet with landscapes and wildlife just as breath-taking, allowing visitors to experience an entirely different side to the mountains.

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Village Ways aim is to help sustain village life, by providing unique holiday experiences to unspoiled rural regions, where guests and hosts all benefit from their small-scale, sustainable tourism.

To achieve this, they create the necessary support structures - such as village committees to organise and manage the tourism enterprise - so that tourism brings long-term benefits to the entire community. With the communities, Village Ways develop small guesthouses which are then managed and owned by the communities themselves. They also train villagers to become guides, cooks, porters, hosts and administrators, and then market the projects internationally, to ensure tourism reaches these villages and that they truly benefit.

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Limalimo Lodge and Village Ways work in partnership with Africa Wildlife Foundation (AWF). We all recognize that in the Simien Mountains, communities need to be incentivised to balance their own economic needs, with the need to protect an area rich in highly-endangered wildlife (including endemic Gelada monkeys, Walia ibex, Ethiopian wolves and a range of bird species).

We believe that this balance can be achieved by investing in sustainable tourism enterprises, to encourage and support local conservation whist bringing an alternative livelihood to the communities living in these sensitive areas.

Both invested in by AWF, we will be supporting one another to achieve our goals of sustainable tourism and conservation within the Simien Mountains. Limalimo Lodge guests and Village Ways trekkers alike, will be able to experience and support sustainable community tourism in the Simien Mountains, via trekking and luxury lodgings in this beautiful location.

Please get in touch to book your stay at Limalimo Lodge, and your trek with Village Ways.

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