Eritrea’s Gems: 9-Day Tour
with Dahlak Islands Adventure

Overview

Embark on a captivating 9-day journey through Eritrea, exploring its must-see destinations. Unveil the historic charm of Asmara, immerse in the vibrant cultures of Keren, Adi Quala, and Massawa, and witness the ancient wonders of Kohaito archaeological site. Set sail to the pristine Dahlak Islands for an unforgettable adventure. This Eritrean expedition promises an enriching experience of a lifetime.

Highlights

* Asmara, the city that boasts one of the world’s finest collections of early 20th-century architecture – with UNESCO awarding it World Heritage Site status.

* The multi-ethnic Keren with its languid atmosphere boasts a seductive amalgam of architectural elements: mosques, churches and colonial buildings.

* The ancient ruins of Kohaito with its perfectly preserved cave paintings.

* Adi Quala and its beautiful Coptic church, the Shrine of Daàro Khonat where the soldiers died in the battle of Adwa rest and the site from which from which you can admire one of the most beautiful views of Eritrea

* Sturdy and tenacious, like Eritreans themselves, Massawa City has survived throughout the centuries, this old port city preserves an ensemble of wonderful Ottoman architecture and gorgeous colonial building.

* Dahlak Archipelago is an exceptional ecosystem, which has few rivals in the world and remain one of the last great unspoilt destinations.

Massawa city
Dahlak island
asmara.eritrea-fiat-tagliero-banner-2
eritrea-asmara-1
asmara-la-grande-moschea-eritrea
mercato-di-keren-eritrea
massawa-eritrea
dahlak-arcipelago-eritrea
eritrea-arcipelago-isole-dahlak
Asmara-villa-art-eco-eritrea

At a glance

Duration

9 days

Start Date

monthly

Highlights

Asmara, Keren, Kohaito, Adi Quala, Massawa, Dahlak

Transport

car, minibus, motorboats

Accomodation

Hotel, in Dahlak tented camp

Group Size

2-10 persons

Tourist guide

english/italian speaking

Meals

7 days BB, 2 days FB


Overview


Highlights


Departure


Day by Day


Prices


Accomodation


Includes/Excludes


More Info

Departure

Scheduled departure, confirmed with a minimum of 2 guests:

2024: 3/2 * 2/3 * 13/4 * 4/5 * 1/6 * 6/7 * 10/8 * 7/9 * 5/10 * 26/10 * 30/11

2025: 11/1 * 8/2 * 8/3 * 5/4

Prices

Please  contact our booking for updated prices.

Day by day itinerary

1st day – Saturday

ASMARA

On the first day of the tour in Asmara, you’ll arrive at the international airport and be transferred to your hotel. The afternoon features a guided exploration of Asmara, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, showcasing its unique early 20th-century architecture and vibrant colours. Highlights include the Lombard Romanesque-style Santa Maria Cathedral, and the Coptic Church Nda Mariam. You’ll also visit the historic Medeber market and the unique Fiat Tagliero garage. The day concludes with an overnight stay at a local hotel, with breakfast included.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Asmara

2nd day – Sunday

ASMARA – TRAIN EXCURSION – KEREN

After breakfast excursion on board the legendary train, pulled by locomotives “Mallet” from Asmara to Nefasit or Arbaroba and back (tour subject to availability and additional local payment).

You will have the rare opportunity to travel along one of the most daring railways in the world,…

Learn more about colonial train excursion

If the excursion by train will not be available, the morning will continue the guided visit of Asmara.

In the afternoon departure to Keren, (1,392 Mt. high), crossroad between the highland and the lowland and well-known for its silver filigree works, with several stops along the way and arrival in the late afternoon.

Overnight in Keren, Sarina hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Keren

3rd day – Monday

KEREN – ASMARA

Today in Keren there is the cattle market, and therefore a crossroads that attracts all the people of the areas surrounding the city.

Sightseeing tour of the city and its market. Worth-seeing places are: the Italian and British war cemeteries, the mosque and the little Greek church near the market, the governor country-seat, the Romanesque Saint Michael church and the old Fortress (1,460 Mt. high). Last but not least, a visit to “Mariam Dearit” (Our Lady of Baobab), a chapel built inside the tree itself.

In the afternoon return to Asmara

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Keren

4th- 5th day Tuesday – Wednesday

ASMARA – MASSAWA – DAHLAK ISLANDS

Departure to Massawa, in just 100 km the road, that from Asmara brings to the beach of Massawa, descend to 2450 metres. Arrived there, as soon as the tourist permit will be ready, we will board for the three-day excursion to the Dahlak islands by motorboat to the discovery of “the pearls of Red Sea”: Dahlak Islands. The itinerary includes the visit of some of the most interesting and richest coral reef islands and will be decided in the imminence of the departure dates of the cruise. The final program will be decided by the captain on the departure day considering the conditions and weather forecasts, as well as the islands for which permits are granted.

During the five-day exploration, you’ll have the opportunity to visit up to five islands and a village. Your base camp will be set up on one of these islands, from which you’ll embark on daily excursions to explore the surrounding islands.

This proposed itinerary, featuring a camp in Durgaam and visits to Durghella, Dahret and Dohul, it is just a sample and not fixed. It’s adaptable and may change based on weather conditions and access permissions to the islands.

Overnight in tent.

Full board (breakfast, lunch and dinner including local drinks (bottled water, soft drinks or beer) 4 pcs per person per day)

Learn more about Dahlak Archipelago

6h day – Thursday

DAHLAK ISLANDS – MASSAWA –ASMARA

After having enjoyed a last swim in this paradise, return to Massawa that will be reached in the early afternoon. If time allowed us will do a short visit to the city and will proceed to Asmara were will arrive in the evening.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

7th day – Friday
ASMARA – KOHAITO – ASMARA

Today you have the option of a leisurely day in Asmara or an optional trip to the archaeological site of Kohaito (This excursion is subject to permit availability and additional local charges).
The Kohaito excursion, accessible by 4×4 vehicles, includes a brief visit to Dekemhare and its early 20th-century Italian-style architecture and markets. The journey showcases the famous Sycamore Valley and ancient pre-Axumite ruins and a 2500-year-old dam in Kohaito, reflecting a rich history linked to ivory trade and advanced construction techniques. Alternatively, you can enjoy exploring Asmara independently.
Return to Asmara in late afternoon-evening
Overnight in Asmara,Crystal hotel or similar.
Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Kohaito archeological site
8th day – Saturday

ASMARA – ADI QUALA – ASMARA

Today choose between a relaxed day in Asmara or an optional excursion to Adi Quala (This excursion is subject to permit availability and additional local charges).

The trip involves traveling via 4×4 to the Mareb valley and exploring significant historical sites. You’ll see one of the most beautiful Coptic church of Eritrea, dedicated to Mariam Tzion, one of the few built in the colonial times, of good workmanship and which houses beautiful frescoes inside. Visit the church of Santa Rita in Adi Quala, that host a memorial plaque in memory of the deaths of Nova Scotia, and the shrine of the Adwa battle fallen in Daaro Khonat, from where you can enjoy one of the most spectacular views and a splendid view of the Mareb valley, and on clear days, the view sweeps right up to the hills of Adwa.

 In the late afternoon return to Asmara.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Adi Quala

9th day – Sunday

ASMARA – DEPARTURE

Day at leisure in Asmara.

You will be arranged a transfer to the airport timed appropriately with your flight schedule.

 

NB:

Our primary aim is to craft a journey that fulfils all your desires. Please feel free to request any information you need and share details that are important to you, ensuring that your trip is a memorable and extraordinary experience in your life

Accomodation

Asmara: Crystal Hotel

Keren: Sarina Hotel

Massawa: Grand Dahlak Hotel

Dahlak islands: mobile standard tented camp, 

Includes /Excludes

What is included

WHAT IS EXCLUDED

More Info: please take note

Note well:

If your program expects a cruise to the Dahlak islands, you will be requested at your arrival to sign a “Release of Liability” form. For a better and transparent information, you will find attached a facsimile of the declaration. In no case traveller will be admitted to the Dahlak trips without signing this declaration

Some necessary advice

Please note that the Dahlak cruise requires adaptability. Accommodation will be in igloo tents on the islands (igloo tents mt 2.10 x 1.25x 0,98H or 2.10 x 1.85x 1,04H, equipped with 5cm mattresses, pillow, sheets and pillowcases, chairs and tables are made available by the organization); Fresh water is scarce, so daily showers are not feasible, and there are no toilet facilities. Meals, prepared by an accompanying cook, will feature fresh fish, traditional Danakil bread, fruit will be available only on the first days, but there will be tea and coffee, pasta and rice, biscuits and jam for the breakfast, in addition to, for those who prefer, typical breakfast of the coast: the “foul” based on fava beans, or an omelette with the addition of green hot pepper! Are available local drinks as bottled water, soft drinks and beer (4 drinks per day per person are included, extra will be paid to the crew). Do not miss a drop of areki (the local anise), to be enjoyed in the evening, maybe on the beach, around the fire chatting with travel buddies or admiring an incredible sky with (see to believe!) millions of stars, a breathtaking view in front of which everyone remains amazed and speechless and, if we are lucky, a bright sea for the phosphorescent plankton.

Inquire for further details

Discover the programme

Departures

Scheduled departure, confirmed with a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 10 guests:

2024: 3/2 * 2/3 * 13/4 * 4/5 * 1/6 * 6/7 * 10/8 * 7/9 * 5/10 * 26/10 * 30/11

2025: 11/1 * 8/2 * 8/3 * 5/4

Price

Please  contact our booking for updated prices.

Day by Day Itinerary

1st day – Saturday

ASMARA

On the first day of the tour in Asmara, you’ll arrive at the international airport and be transferred to your hotel. The afternoon features a guided exploration of Asmara, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, showcasing its unique early 20th-century architecture and vibrant colours. Highlights include the Lombard Romanesque-style Santa Maria Cathedral, and the Coptic Church Nda Mariam. You’ll also visit the historic Medeber market and the unique Fiat Tagliero garage. The day concludes with an overnight stay at a local hotel, with breakfast included.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Asmara

2nd day – Sunday

ASMARA – TRAIN EXCURSION – KEREN

After breakfast excursion on board the legendary train, pulled by locomotives “Mallet” from Asmara to Nefasit or Arbaroba and back (tour subject to availability and additional local payment).

You will have the rare opportunity to travel along one of the most daring railways in the world,…

Learn more about colonial train excursion

If the excursion by train will not be available, the morning will continue the guided visit of Asmara.

In the afternoon departure to Keren, (1,392 Mt. high), crossroad between the highland and the lowland and well-known for its silver filigree works, with several stops along the way and arrival in the late afternoon.

Overnight in Keren, Sarina hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Keren

3rd day – Monday

KEREN – ASMARA

Today in Keren there is the cattle market, and therefore a crossroads that attracts all the people of the areas surrounding the city.

Sightseeing tour of the city and its market. Worth-seeing places are: the Italian and British war cemeteries, the mosque and the little Greek church near the market, the governor country-seat, the Romanesque Saint Michael church and the old Fortress (1,460 Mt. high). Last but not least, a visit to “Mariam Dearit” (Our Lady of Baobab), a chapel built inside the tree itself.

Visit to the war cemeteries in which Italian soldiers and Askari are buried (the Eritreans who fought alongside the Italian troops) and the British cemetery.

In the afternoon return to Asmara

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Keren

4°- 5°-day Tuesday – Wednesday

ASMARA – MASSAWA – DAHLAK ISLANDS

Departure to Massawa, in just 100 km the road, that from Asmara brings to the beach of Massawa, descend to 2450 metres. Arrived there, as soon as the tourist permit will be ready, we will board for the three-day excursion to the Dahlak islands by motorboat to the discovery of “the pearls of Red Sea”: Dahlak Islands. The itinerary includes the visit of some of the most interesting and richest coral reef islands and will be decided in the imminence of the departure dates of the cruise. The final program will be decided by the captain on the departure day considering the conditions and weather forecasts, as well as the islands for which permits are granted.

During the five-day exploration, you’ll have the opportunity to visit up to five islands and a village. Your base camp will be set up on one of these islands, from which you’ll embark on daily excursions to explore the surrounding islands.

This proposed itinerary, featuring a camp in Durgaam and visits to Durghella, Dahret and Dohul, it is just a sample and not fixed. It’s adaptable and may change based on weather conditions and access permissions to the islands.

Overnight in tent.

Full board (breakfast, lunch and dinner including local drinks (bottled water, soft drinks or beer) 4 pcs per person per day)

Learn more about Dahlak Archipelago

6° day – Thursday

DAHLAK ISLANDS – MASSAWA –ASMARA

After having enjoyed a last swim in this paradise, return to Massawa that will be reached in the early afternoon. If time allowed us will do a short visit to the city and will proceed to Asmara were will arrive in the evening.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

7th day – Friday

ASMARA – KOHAITO – ASMARA

Today you have the option of a leisurely day in Asmara or an optional trip to the archaeological site of Kohaito (This excursion is subject to permit availability and additional local charges).

The Kohaito excursion, accessible by 4×4 vehicles, includes a brief visit to Dekemhare and its early 20th-century Italian-style architecture and markets. The journey showcases the famous Sycamore Valley and ancient pre-Axumite ruins and a 2500-year-old dam in Kohaito, reflecting a rich history linked to ivory trade and advanced construction techniques. Alternatively, you can enjoy exploring Asmara independently.

Learn more about Kohaito archeological site

8° day – Saturday

ASMARA – ADI QUALA – ASMARA

Today choose between a relaxed day in Asmara or an optional excursion to Adi Quala (This excursion is subject to permit availability and additional local charges).

The trip involves traveling via 4×4 to the Mareb valley and exploring significant historical sites. You’ll see one of the most beautiful Coptic church of Eritrea, dedicated to Mariam Tzion, one of the few built in the colonial times, of good workmanship and which houses beautiful frescoes inside. Visit the church of Santa Rita in Adi Quala, that host a memorial plaque in memory of the deaths of Nova Scotia, and the shrine of the Adwa battle fallen in Daaro Khonat, from where you can enjoy one of the most spectacular views and a splendid view of the Mareb valley, and on clear days, the view sweeps right up to the hills of Adwa.

The return to Asmara is scheduled for late afternoon.

Overnight in Asmara, Crystal hotel or similar.

Bed & Breakfast

Learn more about Adi Quala

9th day – Sunday

ASMARA – DEPARTURE

Day at leisure in Asmara.

You will be arranged a transfer to the airport timed appropriately with your flight schedule.

 

NB:

Our primary aim is to craft a journey that fulfils all your desires. Please feel free to request any information you need and share details that are important to you, ensuring that your trip is a memorable and extraordinary experience in your life.

Accomodation

Asmara: Crystal Hotel

Keren: Sarina Hotel

Massawa: Grand Dahlak Hotel

Dahlak islands: mobile standard tented camp

Includes /Excludes

What is included:

Five nights in Asmara, B&B accomodation, Crystal Hotel or similar

One night in Keren, B&B, Sarina hotel or similar

Two nights at Dahlak island, overnight in tent, full board during the cruise (breakfast, lunch, dinner including local drinks among bottled water, soft drinks and beer (4 drinks per person per day).

All camping equipment at Dahlak camp: comfortable igloo tent (height mt 0.98-1.06), 5cm mattresses, sleeping bag, fully equipped camp kitchen and cook.

Transfer from Asmara to Massawa and return

Transfer from Asmara to Keren and return

Welcome at arrival and farewell at departure

Local taxes, tourist permits, entrance fees and Dahlak tax

English/Italian speaking guide, except on free days

WHAT IS EXCLUDED:

Entry visa, we will support your visa request with LOI or visa on arrival when available

Meals and drinks during the tour on the mainland, on Dahlak island full board drinks included

Excursion by colonial train

Optional 4WD excursion: day 7th to Kohaito archaeological sites and day 8th to Adi Quala

Tips and gratuities

Travel insurance: is a MUST to have a comprehensive travel insurance covering cancellation, curtailment, medical, emergency travel and assistance, as this is compulsory on all our trips.

Personal expenses

All what is not included in the “Price include”

More Info

Note well:

If your program expects a cruise to the Dahlak islands, you will be requested at your arrival to sign a “Release of Liability” form. For a better and transparent information, you will find attached a facsimile of the declaration. In no case traveller will be admitted to the Dahlak trips without signing this declaration

Some necessary advice:

NB: Please note that the Dahlak cruise requires adaptability. Accommodation will be in igloo tents on the islands (igloo tents mt 2.10 x 1.25x 0,98H or 2.10 x 1.85x 1,04H, equipped with 5cm mattresses, pillow, sheets and pillowcases, chairs and tables are made available by the organization); Fresh water is scarce, so daily showers are not feasible, and there are no toilet facilities. Meals, prepared by an accompanying cook, will feature fresh fish, traditional Danakil bread, fruit will be available only on the first days, but there will be tea and coffee, pasta and rice, biscuits and jam for the breakfast, in addition to, for those who prefer, typical breakfast of the coast: the “foul” based on fava beans, or an omelette with the addition of green hot pepper! Are available local drinks as bottled water, soft drinks and beer (4 drinks per day per person are included, extra will be paid to the crew). Do not miss a drop of areki (the local anise), to be enjoyed in the evening, maybe on the beach, around the fire chatting with travel buddies or admiring an incredible sky with (see to believe!) millions of stars, a breathtaking view in front of which everyone remains amazed and speechless and, if we are lucky, a bright sea for the phosphorescent plankton.

Similar trips


eritrea-paesaggio-rotaie-asmara-massawa

Unveiling Eritrea:
9-Day Adventure to
Must-See Destinations

Unveil Eritrea’s gems in a captivating 9-day adventure. Explore vibrant Asmara, historic Massawa, ancient Kohaito, and immerse in Keren and Adi Quala‘s culture. Mesmerizing journey awaits


Book Now


eritrea-massawa-portici2

Taste of Eritrea:

a 5 day experience

Delve into a captivating 5-day journey, discovering Eritrea’s allure in Asmara and Massawa. Immerse in culture, explore charming streets, relish history, and coastal charm.”


Book Now

Subscribe to our Newsletter