When to come
In most of the country, the main rainy season runs from June to the end of September, with short rains in March. In the Omo valley however, in Southern Ethiopia, the seasons are different with the main rains from March to June and shorter rains in November. With the upgrading of the airports along the historic route (Axum, Lalibela, Gondar and Bahir Dar), it is now possible to visit the north even in the rainy season. For travelers who do not mind waiting out a downpour (usually followed by brilliant sunshine) there are certain rewards — a green countryside full of crops and flowers and the sites largely to yourselves.
Climate and Clothing
B/c of elevation, the temperature rarely exceed 25°C (77°F) in most of the country, although in some of the lower lying areas (Awash, Omo valley) it can get considerably hotter.
Pack light clothes for the daytime and jacket or sweater for the evenings, and a good pair of walking shoes even if you are not going trekking-path ways around historic sites is usually uneven and stony. Trekkers in the Simian and Bale Mountains will need warm clothes, waterproofs and 3-4 season sleeping bags.
A cultural note: Ethiopians are generally modest dressers and visitors should be sensitive about going underdressed into places of worship. Shoes must always be removed before entering churches and mosques — for getting around sites like Lalibela with its many churches airline socks are very useful.
Health & Medical!
All visitors should be in possession of valid yellow fever vaccination certificate. Immunization for Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid and Polio is recommended. In many sites malaria is not a problem because of the elevation — this is true of Axum, Gondar and Lalibela for example, but it can occur in Bahir Dar at the end of the rainy season and after unseasonable rains. But in bahir dar in this time it is almost control by the government health care’s! Chloroquine resistant strains have been identified in some areas so you should consult your doctor about the prescription. Alternatively, you can keep mosquitoes and other insects at bay with repellent creams and sprays. (Climatic changes and phenomena such as el-Nino has meant the appearance of Malaria at unseasonable times, and its spread to areas previously malaria free). Visitors should take a simple first aid pack, which would include: different size plasters, antiseptic cream, anti-histamine cream and/or tablets for insect bites, sun barrier cream (while temperatures are moderate the sun is strong) and anti diarrhea tablets such as Imodium for emergencies (they will not cure the problem but will control the symptoms). Generally, visitors should take out standard holiday health insurance in their home countries.