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10 Fascinating Facts About Ethiopia: From the Birthplace of Coffee to a Land of Runners

Ethiopia is a country full of diverse cultures, rich history, and natural beauty. It is the second-most populous country in Africa and is located in the Horn of Africa. In this article, we’ll explore the 10 most interesting facts about Ethiopia.

The birthplace of coffee

Ethiopia is known to be the birthplace of coffee, where the story of the discovery of coffee beans began. According to legend, a goat herder named Kaldi discovered the coffee plant in the 9th century. He noticed that his goats became energetic after eating the berries from a certain plant. Kaldi tried the berries and soon discovered the stimulating effects of coffee.

The birthplace of coffee

A unique alphabet

Ethiopia is the only country in Africa with its own unique alphabet, known as Ge’ez. The alphabet has 33 letters and is still used today in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.

A unique alphabet

A land of ancient history

Ethiopia has a rich history that dates back to the ancient times. The country is home to several UNESCO World Heritage sites, such as the ruins of the ancient city of Aksum, the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, and the walled city of Harar Jugol.

A land of ancient history

The roof of Africa

Ethiopia is home to the highest mountain range in Africa, the Simien Mountains. The highest peak in the range, Ras Dashen, stands at 4,550 meters above sea level.

The roof of Africa

A diverse wildlife

Ethiopia is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including the endangered Ethiopian wolf, the gelada baboon, and several species of antelope. The country is also a popular destination for bird watching, with over 860 species of birds recorded.

A diverse wildlife

A unique calendar

Ethiopia has its own unique calendar, which is seven years behind the Gregorian calendar. The Ethiopian calendar consists of 12 months of 30 days each, with a 13th month of five or six days, depending on whether it is a leap year.

A unique calendar

A land of festivals

Ethiopia is a country of many festivals, with each region having its own unique celebrations. One of the most famous festivals is Timkat, which celebrates the baptism of Jesus Christ in the Jordan River. Another popular festival is Meskel, which celebrates the finding of the True Cross by Queen Helena in the 4th century.

A land of festivals

A land of spices

Ethiopia is known for its unique cuisine, which is characterized by the use of spices such as berbere, a blend of chili peppers, garlic, ginger, and other spices. The country is also the largest exporter of the spice called “tef”, which is used to make the traditional Ethiopian bread, injera.

A country of runners

Ethiopia is a country of great runners, with several Olympic gold medals and world records to its name. The country has produced some of the world’s greatest long-distance runners, including Haile Gebrselassie and Kenenisa Bekele.

A country of runners

A welcoming people

Ethiopia is known for its friendly and welcoming people, who are always eager to show visitors their country and culture. Ethiopians are proud of their heritage and are happy to share their traditions and customs with visitors.

A welcoming people

In conclusion, Ethiopia is a country full of interesting facts and unique features. From its ancient history to its diverse wildlife and unique cuisine, there is something for everyone in Ethiopia. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an adventure seeker, Ethiopia is a country that will capture your heart and leave you wanting more.

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