Lephis Forest


Tucked away in Ethiopia’s Central Rift Valley, Lephis Forest is located four hours from Addis Ababa – just far enough for the bustle of urban life to fade into the slower pace of the traditional village. The forest is among this region’s most pristine and secluded natural wonders, with breathtaking views, endemic bird and wildlife species, and a natural waterfall.

The area’s diverse topography includes mountain chains, valleys and glades, and unspoiled highland forests bursting with unique flora and fauna. The resident wildlife includes leopards, warthogs, bushbuck, mountain nyala, colobus monkeys, thick-billed ravens, African white backed vultures, and blue-breasted bee-eaters.

More than 2,000 households also call the forest home and rely on its natural resources for their livelihoods. They understand the importance of conservation and wise use of natural resources and are currently seeking ways to use the forest sustainably while preserving it for future generations. 

The Lephis Ecotourism Cooperative leads guided tours on foot or horseback, offering the perfect opportunity to discover this little-known region, the community, and the idyllic waterfall, which cascades down a lush green cliff face deep in the forest.

The cooperative offers three tours:

Waterfall Hike:
Visitors can enjoy a guided hike or horseback ride through the stunning Lephis forest which culminates at the breathtaking Lephis waterfall. Read more…

Dungago Hike: For visitors with more time, the Dungago Trail offers a full day of adventures in the forest. Visitors can enjoy wildlife viewing, a visit to the waterfall, and birdwatching. Read more… 

Overnight Camping Adventure: Visitors wishing to spend more time in the forest can stay overnight at the fully equipped Lephis Campsite and enjoy an early morning hike. A great choice for birdwatchers! Read more….

Lephis also has a rich culture of handcrafts. Read more about Lephis Forest artisans and crafts... 

Horse handlers in Lephis were trained by Equus Ethiopia, a specialist riding company offering unique access to Ethiopia’s culture through its treks, expeditions and trail rides. To learn more about horseback riding in Ethiopia visit www.equus-ethiopia.com.

By booking a tour with The Lephis Ecotourism Cooperative, you will benefit the cooperative's members and their families. The cooperative also reinvests a percentage of its profits into a community development and conservation fund to help preserve the forest for future generations


To Book Directly 
Manager: Tujar Geda
Call: +251 92 882 8530
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
For English, Amharic, and Afaan Oromo

To Book Through a Reservation Agent Call: +251 550 8870 or +251 551 0168 or E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it - English and Amharic 


For assistance arranging a full tour including lodging and transportation contact one of the participating tour operators.

For those interested in longer horseback rides, visit our partner Equus Ethiopia to learn about their Zara Yacob Trail experience


Traveler's Testimonial

"A wild and beautiful place - only a few days here but really enjoyed it. Stunning scenery and wildlife."

Simone Cole - BBC

"Our visit with you was far & away the high point of the trip."

Erin Chapman - D.A.T.A., USA (experiencing community tourism in Ethiopia on a trip with Brad Pitt)

Come and Enjoy!

Featured Community Experience