Awash National Park and Game Reserve is located 225km east of Addis Ababa, bordering the Awash river in the upper Rift Valley. The park covers some 756 sq km of mainly acacia woodland and grassland, ranging from 750-2,007m above sea level. Well-maintained tracks take visitors along the Awash Falls valley to the most spectacular of the scenic attractions, such as the hot springs oasis at Filwoha to the north, and the waterfalls of the Awash river gorge to the south of the park.
It is always possible to see the game in the reserve:
Oryx, Soemmerring’s gazelle and wild pig are common. Slightly less frequent are the furry waterbuck which tend to appear near the river in the late afternoon. The tiny dik-dik, not easy to spot in the speckled shade of the acacia thorn, zebra grazing the plains to the west of Fantale, cheetah, serval and leopard are also there but it is not easy to spot them; baboons, both anubis and hamadryas, kudus, lesser and greater, the giant tortoise, hippo, reedbuck, aardvark and caracal are also represented. Klipspringer inhabit the higher slopes of the mountain and curious hyrax peer at you curiously from behind their rocks. In the bottom of the gorge you can spot the black and white colobus monkey.
Over four hundred species are recorded for the park. They range from the great ostrich, frequently and easily observed, and the less common Secretary Bird and Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, to the flashes of brilliant pink which are the Carmine Bee-eaters, and the Abyssinian Roller with turquoise and purple, wings. And between these two extremes, birds of the riverine forest, Coucal, Turaco, Go-away Birds; birds of prey; and birds of the savannah.