Nature & Geography
The Extent of Entoto Natural Park's Activities.(Updated 2018-08-30)
The Hidden Treasure at the Mountain's Shoulder.
This place is the work area of so many endeavours; Entoto's High plateau, where it appears among adorable Juniper hills and dreamlike meadows. Ultimately, beyond the horizon of golden fields, this landscape of forgotten dreams reveals its southern border in the abyss Bees' Cliff (14). Here it shows very soon; the beautiful path (42) to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34, where the massive work has elapsed with nature restoration for many years.
1. The community Entoto Kidane Mehret.The community Entoto Kidane Mehret - An Elevated Protectorate.
The society Entoto Kidane Mehret is a very dedicated and appealing mountain town but should indeed more precisely be described as a deeply devoted religious Sanctuary and Protectorate of Nature and Inhabitants.
Entoto Natural Park road and map info.
The entrance to the Park is to the right of the sanctuary.
A historical protectorate with a sanctuary's reliability.For a long time, this has been a religious protectorate of Entoto's nature, thus gaining excellent protection that has been deeply associated with religious devotion and conviction. However, the Hotel and Guesthouse is missing, which means that the nearest location to the guest house for tourism and dining is the Shero Meda (Shiromeda) community.
Shero Meda (Shiromeda) - A well-established community for transportation and amenities.
This society is the central station for further taxi and bus services to Entoto Kidane Mehret (1). However, the town and station Shero Meda is close enough to Entoto Kidane Mehret to offer a pleasant walk to Entoto Natural Park. Shero Meda (Shiromeda) is also the place that allows the easiest access to Entoto Maryam, located on Entoto's plateau.
Accommodation north of Shero Meda (Shiromeda)The two choices of travel routes starting from Shero Meda centre and continuing up the hill towards Entoto Kidane Mehret and Entoto Maryam offer here some small and inviting neighbourhoods. At this outer boundary of Shero Meda are shown a few streets where the roads up to Entoto Kidane Mehret and Entoto Maryam are joined, providing convenient access to amenities up to a mile north of Shero Meda's centre.
A Great Plateau Ledge for View and Activities.Arriving at the high viewpoint (16) is very convenient, as the substantial rise upwards offers some beautiful and exciting rests with magnificent scenery and historical surprises with old Italian fortifications (38) and trees of a surprising dignified furrowed patina.
An Ideal Place for the Well-Equipped Family.From this location (16) provides pleasant resting places for picnics in pleasant tranquillity and contemplation about the unique nature, which is facilitated easily by the high point of view, even over the mist-veiled Capital far below the southern slopes. Much closer the farmhouse is reminded and not far below even the chanting walls of Entoto Kidane Mehret Church (32).
2. Shops for Picnics and Adventures.The most necessary for the Park's experience and picnics as well as candy shop (2) is across the bus stop from the community (1). For those who are very early in the hours of dawn, there is a small shop also at the beginning of the Juniper forest, just next to the health spring with its associated buildings (31).
3. Damtew's Shola. Once planted by the chief priest of Arada-Giorgis, the former worship place has a strong identity with wide and open lawns laid out as a star. The big Ficus sycomorus tree in the middle makes this place the ideal wedding park. To the south-west, in one of the triangular lawns, the slope naturally forms an area for an outdoor theatre.
4. The Forest of Maryam. Once a year, on October 1 st, people used to go here after the celebration of Maryam and bring food. The woodlot has decreased in size but can be re-established.
5. The Concealed Path of Kidane Mehret.A refreshing cool stream still runs in leap and joy. Beyond the secrets of Entoto Kidane Mehret's sacred stone walls, (32) a path to Bees' Cliff (14) and further exhilarated explorations.
A hidden path between the sanctuary and the gorge.The trail runs attractively hidden behind Entoto Kidane Mehret (32) in a concealed curve below its wall and passing through a small part of the village before the path (5) opens along a deep ravine and finishing with downhill towards a traditional bridge.
The different choices uphill from this bridge starts either from (37) or even (19) is an attractive way to these natural pools just above Bees' Cliff (14).
The paths up to Bees' Cliff (14) offer several options; the northern hillside of the tributary gorge (36), but also the southern slope of (38-39) - (15-16) and (41).
Multiple trail options from the bridge at Kidane Mehret Church (32).Thus, there are several very different of paths choices just uphill from point (38) but also becomes enriched by a more thorough, independent, acquaintance with the full south-eastern to north-western eroded soil road (41) located just above points (14 - 16).
Grandiose scenarios of the Canyon's trails.These trails are all characterised by the unique and dramatic slopes at the canyon (35). The options of trails are here beautifully inspiring and often in contact with each other, allowing another choice of a path by a relaxing return or to an intersection towards an alternative height above the gorge. This option might follow the shoreline of the river (35) or even at the slope's upper plateau ledge.
** However, it is clear that the canyon's slopes in some places are too steep to allow a confrontation with a vertical commitment, but just this offers what constitutes the extra interesting in wildlife scenarios and thus giving the walks an unforgettable value.
A canyon of adorable beauty and lush greenery.
6. Stone Heaps showing the direction of the Entoto Maryam Church. An old way of marking where visitors from afar could spend the night, inside the church.
7. Holy Water of Maryam. Originally a spring emerging out of the cliff, but now it is paved. People still drink water to be blessed by the Madonna.
8.,9. Seasonal Waterfalls.
10. Small Hill with Stone Walls. A badly eroded area, due to a moderately steep slope and mature Eucalyptus globulus, but still an interesting place that can be opened and used, either as a herb garden, maze, or to go picnicking.
11. Terraces. Can be opened again for a resting place on the park walk.
12. Stone Piles gathered in 1974 for a road construction. Now, they are sculptural elements in the landscape and should be kept as they are.
14. Bees' Cliff - A rock dwelling beyond time.One of the most spectacular spots in the park, where scenic beauty can be enjoyed while resting. A lot of birds can be seen here.
However, this is overall the reason for the attraction of the place where thanks to varying and dramatic scenery create ideal habitats for wildlife that naturally utilises this rich, three-dimensional diversity in water and rock formations.
Close Encounter With Playing Baboon Families (14).While this place is unique in many many ways, there are also reservations about the impact people can exert on its nature. Because this site contains not only what is desirable for people but also for wildlife, the result is that a conflict of interest and living space can occur.
The paths up to Bees' Cliff (14) offer several options; the northern hillside of the tributary gorge (36), the southern slope of (38-39) - (15-16) and (41).
15. Five-mountain-view hill. From the top of the hill, the visitor can overlook great distances. The slope down the hill will be developed into different levels so that the visitors will spread out in alternate choices of attraction.
16. Enchanting View Above the Capital.A great place for picnics in tranquillity and awe from a high plateau panorama view with surroundings of dense matured Juniper trees. Here is also nice terraces and good quality lawns for sports and activities.
The resting place from the era of dreams.From this high viewpoint provides resting places for picnics in social tranquillity and contemplation about the unique nature, which is facilitated quickly by the high point of view, even over the mist-veiled Capital far below the southern slopes. Much closer the farmhouse is reminded and not far below even the chanting walls of Entoto Kidane Mehret Church (32).
17. Hyena Cliff (Jibb Gedel). A waterfall and steep slopes make the attraction of an adventurous site, to which a suspension bridge might be added.
18. The Cave. Those who climb up along the brook will find an enclosed space, with a small waterfall. This is the spot for those who want to be alone for a while.
The Caution Choice for Families.
During the rain season, it,s therefore appropriate to enjoy the beautifully undulated promenade to the site of the Italian built spring water facility (19). Entoto Kidane Mehret's inhabitants are bringing their household water from this source, and therefore the company is apparent by playing children and people who are fetching quantities of water to their homes.
20. Climbing Cliff. The Italians prepared this very steep cliff wall for climbing. The cliff is impressive in size and can be used again for those who have an interest in this sport.
21. Big Waterfall.
22. Valley BottomThis place is located just at the bridge below this Sanctuary and is reached fairly close to the path (5) near Entoto Kidane Mehret Church, beautiful scenery with a brook passing by. This brook (35) is in many ways characterizing the views to the dramatic landscape and cliff formations of the uphill trails and is an excellent assistant for orientation for the most hiking paths up to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34.
A graceful invitation to the waiting adventures
Attractively inviting amongst the purging water and the seductively curved river banks cliffs start here below Entoto Kidane Mehret (32) the alluring options for the continued hiking adventure. With a river character of beach curved rocks in harmonious wave formations where the children play, and the laundry dries on the inviting soft and clean, polished rock bed, this place is a really appealing beauty to appreciate already the first steps on the bridge below Entoto Kidane Mehret.
Clear and Pleasant Hiking Trails
This ancient highland mountain with its secret high plateau of real old serenity lure here intriguingly where it towers in full contact on the opposite side of Entoto Kidane Mehret and its, seductive polished rock-gully bottom (22).
The mountain's mighty hillside is initiating here the first steps of Entoto's threshold and rises majestically over the southern slope.
In profound veneration of reverence, it appears to any visitors as it towers above to relatively high altitude. Caution is, therefore, an essential foundation for preparation because the mountain's rise is quite demanding for visitors with otherwise healthy activities from lowland experience.
Towards the Fresh Well-Fragrance of Highland
However, here underneath in the valley and just after the handcrafted bridge rises the mountain's slope towards Entoto's high plateau continuously upwards towards secret places of pure serenity and this often with views of breathtakingly beautiful hights.
Well fragrant and aesthetically unforgettably alluring are these paths from Entoto Kidane Mehret's valley bottom (gully 22) and the river (35) there they rise towards breathtakingly sublime heights of aesthetically unforgettable dream paths.
The Rising Shoulder of Entoto's Massif
A Guiding Canyon Deliver Path Assistance
24. Shewarkaw's House. Here, a chief Guard once had his house, built in leather. Now the area is open, and people pass through on their walk downhill.
25. Abbah's Waterfall. The park area is generously provided with waterfalls, but this is one of the most spectacular.
26. Hermit's Cave. Not long ago, a hermit had his home in a narrow opening in the cliff. Only he knew how to get there.
27. Seasonal Waterfall.
28. Shintobele's Spring. This brook was named after the father of a well-known man on Entoto, Ato Fitawari Ayenew. It is used as a seasonal water supply for the neighbourhood. By the conservation of watersheds in the Entoto Natural Park, the quality of the water will be improved.
29. Ato Bekele's Juniper forest. A stand of beautiful, mature junipers is still remaining here, thanks to the care of Ato Bekele. Some fully grown Cypressus lucitanica, planted 30 years ago, can be seen, too (Håkan Blanck and Pia Englund, Entoto Natural Park 1995).
The Hidden Treasure at the Mountain's Shoulder ( 1 )
(30 -31 -32- 33) Entoto Kidane Mehret Church, Community,
Monastery, Sacred water source, Juniperus procera Forest (indigenous).
- Quite close this weathered map's central parts, but fairly far down, it can clearly be seen where Entoto Kidane Mehret Church (32) can be discovered where it is located on a small northern bend of the completed road.
- Although Entoto Kidane Mehret is quite highly located and appearing distant due to its height above the Capital, nevertheless, it's equipped with a station for regular bus and taxi traffic.
- Completely surrounded by its society, this station is characterized by an inviting cosiness, but together with an accompanied impression of magnificence that cannot be expected in a massive rock ledge of a mountain.
- If it was not for the sanctuary that discreetly dominates its outer propagation, this station would be disproportionally abundant where it is located beautifully on this dramatically elevated hidden mountain plateau where it appears like an essential marketplace so generously dominant right next to this quaint community (1).
- This unique town's structure creates here a harmonic embrace of the extensive and impressive Entoto Kidane Mehret Church (32), Monastery and Sacred Water Source (31), Juniperus procera Forest (indigenous) 30.
- In addition, this sanctuary with its Church and Monastery are astonishing hidden, tucked into the mountain massif rising shoulder where perception arises very soon to be careful because precipices and gullies take over immediately when you just move away from a little piece of this remarkable protective plateau and its quaint surrounding mountain ledge town (1).
The Ascent to the Community Entoto Kidane Mehret.Along the anticipated and continued fairly steep climb of the road is the experience of native forest (30) within arm's length of a charming but surprising experience, where it is just very close, on the right side of the road looms in a revelation and guise of a completely fenced but mighty Juniper forest (30) that spreads out vigorously from the steep ascent beginning and up to the road's clearance, completely beside Entoto Kidane Mehret (32).
The Source at the Mountain's Shoulder.At the initial part of this, both protected and protective forest, you find yourself a good piece below the society but are nonetheless part of its togetherness. The forest here (30) is impressive and serves the very important purpose of maintaining a clean and uncontaminated spring water.
Juniper Mountain Spring.Just to the right and slightly below (31), at the beginning of this step well-fenced juniper forest is a highly sought after and a popular building where the water from this mysterious, ancient place will arrive in cascades and qualitative amounts.
Enchanting and Reigning Juniper Mammoth Trees.Here, immediately behind the muscular columnar Juniperus procera trunks and many layers wire prohibition protection arrives this spring water (31) with gurgling sounds and imparts finally a refreshing crystal clear stream below the gnarled roots of these stately venerable and furrowed columns of guards in the shape of ancient patinated Junipers.
Facilities and Amenities at Entoto Kidane Mehret.This community, equipped with shops (2) for the most necessary, cultural beautiful buildings with associated spring water and indigenous forest of giant Junipers (30). These constitute significant assets altogether for all type of adventures, picnics, and hiking in the varied mountainous terrain of Entoto Natural Park.
The community Entoto Kidane Mehret.The society Entoto Kidane Mehret (1) is a very dedicated and appealing mountain town but should indeed more precisely be described as an impressively extended but quaint mountain town at a mighty and deeply religious Sanctuary and Protectorate of Nature and Inhabitants.
34. Entoto Natural Park (Nursery).This place is the work area of so many endeavours; Entoto's High plateau, where it appears among adorable Juniper hills and dreamlike meadows. Ultimately, beyond the horizon of golden fields, this landscape of forgotten dreams reveals its southern border in the abyss Bees' Cliff (14). Here it shows very soon; the beautiful path ( 42) to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34, where the massive work has elapsed with nature restoration for many years.
The picturesque path among adorable Juniper hills.This excursion to the Nursery is a pleasant wandering with a minimum change in altitude, where it usually permits dry rock wade over to the west side of the meandering stream (35). By this direction, the trail passes just little besides the natural pools above Bees' Cliff (14). Then within concise a path (42) in a romantically inviting landscape of meadows and smoothly curved Juniper hills with an indigenous and juvenile forest, before arriving at the Nursery (34).
This building has during these years of extensive nature conservation activities have been very significant, and the work had not been possible without its existence.
35. The Stream with Canyon and Waterfalls.The stream of these hiking adventures starts here just below Entoto Kidane Mehret with a character of beach curved rocks in harmonious wave formations where children play, and the laundry dries on the inviting soft and clean, polished rock bed.
Caution During the Rainy Season.However, provided that the trekking not is made during rainy periods, the long stretches of tributary river banks (35) also offer a lot of relaxation and enjoyment, especially after that the path deviates and continues upward just before the old pipeline joins the reservoir of the Italian fortification (38).
** 35. Very Clear Restrictions for further HikingAttention, the safety boundary of the continuous path along the river's shoreline (35) gives clear indication that this route does not include the gorge with further upwards abyss hiking after passing the tributary creek (36). In addition to being a lovely and cosy inviting place, this tributary (36) represents the last comfortable direction and route up towards Bees' Cliff and thus Entoto's high plateau. Although Bees' Cliff (14) is very near here, towering dramatically above with its vertical cliffside and directly dangerous except for possible experts with safety harnesses and other equipment.
A comfortable return to the trails of the southern slopes.This danger appears thus with clarity when walking along the path of this river's shoreline (35) and requires only a short walk back to reach the trails on the eastern slopes of the riverbank and further the inviting hiking uphill along the southern slopes of the tributary creek (36).
Clear and Pleasant Hiking Trails.Including all of these eastern slope paths, they are very easy to follow in the landscape because the visual contact with the lush hillside towards the river (35) is apparent regardless of the path chosen from Entoto Kidane Mehret (32).
A green path along the riverbank within the charmingly inviting gorge.The trail that deviates just before the Italian fortification (38) becomes after a while very inviting when approaching the slopes to the riverbank (35) and provides an extensive spatial wide contact from within the gorge including both the river and the riverbank's green and rising wild uphill slopes.
Season Limited Creek HikingThis dry creek bed hiking can be an exhilarating experience in this concealed cliff space where shadows sweep deeply in soft greenery shifts. This compactly deep, alluring cliff space is indeed temptingly exciting and enticing where the dark underground passages in shadows are just waiting for actions in a somewhat overwhelming flow of impressions.
**Observe, the hiking directly in the dry brook bed is only possible if it has elapsed some months since the last rainy season but then offers adventure experiences that are unique to those who may have the courage to surprise a pleasant strenuous Hyena.
Harmonic Currents Along the River.Since all streams around Entoto run up within a short distance to the highest part of the plateau, there is no risk of being surprised by a far and accumulated sudden river flow from an unknown distance. There is also no known weakness in the deep rock pools that could constitute a magazine water mass just waiting to break through a weak point in the cliff bottom.
** However, be careful and expect even the worse type of scenario because the animals are wild and even the strongest rock will break if the bad luck together with very rare and significant earthquake would be coincident.
36. A Multiple, Spatial Nature Dream.Where these two streams meet, here is created a place of idle creative nature, splendid surprises in both hidden prongs and open spaces with powerful slopes. The one who stays a little hidden between the tree trunks at point (36) can easily get very close to rumbling and relaxed hyenas. The southern slopes of the creek (36) are quite steep but yet comfortable hiking with wonderful views down over the mysterious river but still inviting open gorge to the river (35).
Awesome fun canyon hike towards the high plateau.This is the last steep and wild hike towards Bees'Cliff (14) and its direction uphill is along the northern hillside of the tributary gorge (36). Initially, the path here is quite rugged, but as the plateau's threshold is very close, also the walk upwards becomes less burdensome.
A walk in the abyss with the secretive company of hyenas.Directly from the route's start in this small hidden gorge (36), gentle winds deliver pleasure with a fresh coolness in a welcoming breeze from the canyon below that is well camouflaging the scary smells of civilization from reaching the hyenas in the depth of gorge (35).
A pleasant easternized route along the tributary gorge 36.However, the abyss is here close and with due care; therefore, a more easternized commitment of the route should be preferred and not only for increased safety but also in purpose to avoid suddenly scaring wildlife that enjoys socializing around the scenic pools right above the plateau threshold and the abyss of Bees' Cliff (14).
37. A Very Clear Guiding to the High Plateau.At this guiding connection (37), a smaller, grounded but a visible pipeline is connected to a larger water pipe. The smaller one-inch thin tube disappears underground just next to the passed a few farm homes and just below them is the bridge to Kidane Mehret. The path just after the bridge requires barely any deviations except few steps up just after the bridge from Kidane Mehret (32). To find the different points above, only follow the coarser water pipe and often rest with some water, because the air is thin and the impressions are precious.
A guiding pipeline just above the traditional farmhouses.Here at the place of the guiding water pipeline (37) is its location just above a few picturesque farm homes, where they are situated on a smaller, sloping, plateau ledge that all together offer an attractive and visible guided hiking trail upwards the southern slope of Entoto. The location of this mentioned trail indicating connection and guide of the water pipeline is thus very close to the few farmhouses where the path charmingly meanders between their inviting courtyards a few tens of metres below point (37).
After the bridge and up to the left-hand is the guiding water pipeline.The smaller one-inch thin tube disappears underground just next to the passed a few farm homes and just below them is the bridge to Entoto Kidane Mehret (32) The path just after the bridge requires barely any deviations except few steps uphill just after passing the bridge from Entoto Kidane Mehret (32).
The path uphill along the pipeline is beautiful and demanding.The path just after the bridge requires barely any deviations except few steps up just after the bridge from Kidane Mehret. To find the different points above, only follow the coarser water pipe and often rest with some water, because the air is thin and the impressions are precious. To find the different points above, only follow the coarser water pipe (37) and often rest with some water, because the air is thin and the impressions are precious.
The Assistance of Path Directions (37).The superficially lying water pipeline from below makes the path easy to follow and reaches a high level on the mountain's shoulder. Just before the Italian fortification (38) when the pipeline makes its high northern bend, the path deviates in two different choices.
The highest crested curve of the pipeline provides with a choice of paths.Just before the Italian fortification (38) when the pipeline makes its high northern bend, the path deviates in two different choices. The path along the pipeline goes with a final horizontal direction towards its connection to the Italian fortification (38) with its reservoir and steep waterfall. The actual way upwards departs before any visible contact with the Italian fortifications, leaving the pipeline's direction just at its highest crest in a right perpendicular direction towards the point (39). Thus, with a few right steps upwards of some metres, it reaches up to an invitingly gentle rising threshold in the shape of an eroded and natural hill shelf.
38. The Italian Fortification and its Bath.This Italian fortification (38), (historical remain) is very close to the actual path upwards and the just above lying farmhouse (39). Just here, little downhill the farmhouse area the pipeline connects to the reservoir and underground installation from Mussolini's troops. It is an interesting and short deviation from the path to visit this place and also beautiful.
** A Thorough Bath Examination is Required in the Italian fortification.While this is an old Italian fortification (38), all kinds of bath demand first to be preceded by a must include thorough bottom and wall examination to ensure regarding the safety conditions of the reservoir where both larger stones and iron objects could pose a severe injury hazard.
39. Wild Meadows with Farmhouse.Just here above is the farmhouse (39) with large Juniperus procera trees along its upper hillside. Furthermore upwards the path turns slightly to the right towards the location (16), just at the high plateau's outer edge and even here with many incredible stately Juniper trees. Even some original, indigenous Podocarpus trees, found from a much previous era, appears admirably muscular furrowed around the extensive farmhouse (39) area just below point (16) which are a great pleasure for any soul with the passion for nature.
40. The Wild and Fertile Forest from the Ancient Era.This is just over 50 years old, indigenous Juniperus procera forest that provides a unique insight into how nature emerged before the Eucalyptus trees were introduced from Australia over 100 years ago. This native Juniper woodland (40) is massive in its appearance and stunning in vitality, with a perfect, lush and dense undergrowth. The natural health and fertile beauty in this indigenous Juniper forest (40) illuminates with precision the healing capacity of a native forest but also the severe nature and habitat destruction that occurred at the introduction of the Eucalyptus tree.
41. A Wide Trail from South-East to North-West.Although, this ground road (41) towards Bees' Cliff pools is eroded and requires some maintenance before use by cautious, conventional tourists vehicles. However, its extent is very suitable for reaching these nature pools at Bees' Cliff (14) and is, therefore, an open and beautiful road for a promenade to the pools or further river passage to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34.
42. The Path Towards Entoto Natural Park (Nursery).The landscape to the north is very moderate and reveals very soon; the beautiful path (42) to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34, where a massive work has elapsed with nature restoration for many years.
The arrival on the high plateau.
A path among adorable Junipers and golden meadows.The remaining path to Entoto Natural Park (Nursery) 34 is a pleasant wandering with a minimum change in altitude, where it usually permits a dry rock wade over to the west side of the meandering stream. By this direction, it passes just little besides the natural pools above Bees' Cliff (14) and then further north through an open forest, before arriving at the Nursery (34).
A Turmoil of Chaos in Waterfall and Thunder.However, the plateau location is high above any instant protection by the community's facilities of taxis, bus station and shops from the quaint ledge town (1) and Entoto Kidane Mehret Church (32). Due to this harsh reality, some reservations are required for the season time when this high plateau is appropriate for visits as well as when the site needs extra caution.
Observe, One Heavy Rain Season Every Year.There are two rainy seasons per year, the small rain season from March to May and the big rains from July to September. The highest rainfall intensity occurs in July and August (Demissew 1988).
During the relatively long rainy season, this place may appear scary, as the water flows are high and intertwined with rapidly unexpected thunderstorms where only a powerful terrain vehicle would give protection.
Some Mornings Hours of Wonderful Respite.While this site offers an exhilarating beauty and the fact that the tempests usually follow a bound rhythm, its experience in beautiful, cosy daily hours can be both an exciting and irresistible occurrence, provided a conscious behaviour to return in time before the next thunderstorm.
His first major settlement was established on the slopes on Mount Wuchacha, west of the present settlement, but he soon moved northwards and set up his camp near the summit of Entoto Mountain, a choice determined by strategic considerations. Here he erected a palace''...
''The next important building to be constructed at Entoto was the church of Maryam, a circular structure, the foundations which were laid in 1885.
Menelik, it is said himself participated in the buildings work, and on occasion travelled with his consort, Queen Taytu, to Mount Managacha to the west where he helped to prepare massive squared roof beams which were then carried dozens of kilometres by groups of four or five soldiers.
It was at this church of Maryam that Menelik was crowned Emperor of Ethiopia in November 1889, and an effigy of the old monarch can still be seen on its walls. ''(Hancoch et al. 1983, pg102.)
But the establishment of the capital on the slopes of Mount Entoto did not turn out well: ''Entoto, as Menelik's capital, rapidly acquired a considerable population.
At the beginning of the century, the British game-hunter and ethnographer, P.H.G. Powel-Cotton, described it as ''a populous city'', while his compatriot, Herbert Vivian, believed that it ''must have comprised 50 000 souls.
''The site, which had initially been selected as a fortress, was not suitable as a Capital for more peaceful times. Being situated on a rugged mountain, it was poorly supplied with provisions which could be brought up only after an exhausting walk.
Food, as Ilg reports, was often scarce, and wood and water were also difficult to obtain. Entoto's climate during the rainy season was moreover far from pleasant, for it suffered from many storms.
A French traveller, Jules Borelli, states that it was a place of much lightning, thunder and fog, while his compatriot, Charles Michelli remarked that, ''exposed to the wind, difficult of access, and without drinking water'', the town was ''an impossible capital''.'' (Ibid, pg 103)