The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has listed the Bale Mountains National Park and the Gedeo Cultural Landscape in Ethiopia as World Heritage Sites.
A site located 400 km from the capital
The Bale Mountains National Park, located in southeastern Ethiopia about 400 km from the national capital Addis Ababa, was inscribed as a world natural heritage site last Monday during the 45th extended session of the World Heritage Committee which took place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
A park founded in 1962
It is home to lakes, wetlands and volcanic remains with spectacular scenery, making it one of the ideal tourist destinations, according to the Ethiopian Ministry of Tourism. The park is also blessed with several species of plants, mammals and birds, many of which are said to be endemic to the park.
The Bale Mountains National Park is the second Ethiopian tourist attraction site to be granted World Heritage status during the ongoing 45th expanded session of the World Heritage Committee.
The Gedeo cultural landscape
It is also the 100th site to be listed as a world heritage site in Africa. The Gedeo country includes a forest that has been protected for many generations. The site was also known for a pattern of multi-layered crops practiced for centuries by the Gedeo, an indigenous people also exemplary for their knowledge of ecosystem conservation and soil fertility. The landscape also has more than 6,000 megalithic steles, which attract researchers as well as foreign and local visitors. The inscription of this site as a world heritage site will ensure its lasting protection, while helping it to become a leading tourist attraction.
This inscription should encourage people to better discover the destination…
The Ethiopian government said the listing of the two sites as UNESCO World Heritage Sites is expected to help strengthen Ethiopia’s tourism development efforts. He further highlighted its crucial role in the proper protection of the two heritage sites.