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MAZ Tour

YEHA

The six century BC, Ethiopia’s historic route begin with a glance at the tantanizing remains of yeha the country’s earliest high civilization. In the remote part of Tigray region, Yeha rests several hours drive from the more accessible city of Axum. The journey takes you on rough tracks through dramatics high land scenery and eventually ends in a beautiful and serene agricultural. It is there, close to a much more recent Christian church, that you may see the towering ruins of Yeha’s temple of the moon-built more than 2500 years ago, in Sabean times.

The temple is an imposing rectangular edifice, though it has been long since it’s lost its roof and upper storey. The ruins stand some twelve meters in height.

Three archaeological excavations were done in 1909, 1947 and 1973 respectively; reveal that this beautiful temple was destroyed by fire. Treasures such as gold rings, golden lions, stone-engraved inscriptions written in Sabean, stone-carved animals like the Walia Ibex (one of Ethiopia's endemic mammals), pottery works and others were uncovered. Some of these findings are displayed in the 4th-century church museum found in the same compound as the temple while others are displayed at the National Museum in Addis Ababa. The twelve underground formations and four other very deep cave structures (which seem to lead to Yemen, Lalibela, Jerusalem and Axum), increase the area's importance in terms of both archaeological research and tourism as well.

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