Guide in Ethiopia

By Tom Cassen
This item appears on page 28 of the May 2014 issue.
This is subscriber only post.
Get one year of online-only access — only $15!
Below is a sample of the article.
Please login or subscribe to ITN to read the entire post.

If you would like to read an issue from the archives that is free to nonsubscribers click here.

On a trip to several remote tribes in Ethiopia’s lower Omo Valley, Oct. 19-Nov. 1, 2013, my wife and I and five other photographers hired an experienced Ethiopian guide, Robel Petros (phone +251911 423112 or email robguide28@yahoo.com).

Our objective on this trip was to take photographs in several villages: Arbore, Kara, Daasanech, Hamar and Mursi. Fluent in English and quite knowledgeable about the tribes and the requirements of photographers, Robel translated for us and negotiated photography fees with the tribes. He managed the necessary “crowd control” so we could photograph without distractions. 

While returning to Addis Ababa, the capital, we also had time to make unplanned stops at villages of the Konso and Dorze people.

Excluding airfare to Addis Ababa and the cost of travel insurance, we each paid Robel $6,850, which included all meals, lodging and transportation (4-wheel-drive SUVs with drivers) for the 12 days we were in Ethiopia. 

Robel was polite and easy to get along with, and he was available whenever we needed him. One night he helped a member of our group deal with monitor lizards that were preventing her from getting sleep.

I think visitors to Ethiopia would be well served if they chose Robel to guide them.

TOM CASSEN

Charlotte, NC

Please login or subscribe to ITN to read the entire post.

On a trip to several remote tribes in Ethiopia’s lower Omo Valley, Oct. 19-Nov. 1, 2013, my wife and I and five other photographers hired an experienced Ethiopian guide, Robel Petros (phone +251911 423112 or email robguide28@yahoo.com).

Our objective on this trip was to take photographs in several villages: Arbore, Kara, Daasanech, Hamar and Mursi. Fluent in English and quite knowledgeable about the tribes and the requirements of photographers, Robel translated for us and negotiated photography fees with the tribes. He managed the necessary “crowd control” so we could photograph without distractions. 

While returning to Addis Ababa, the capital, we also had time to make unplanned stops at villages of the Konso and Dorze people.

Excluding airfare to Addis Ababa and the cost of travel insurance, we each paid Robel $6,850, which included all meals, lodging and transportation (4-wheel-drive SUVs with drivers) for the 12 days we were in Ethiopia. 

Robel was polite and easy to get along with, and he was available whenever we needed him. One night he helped a member of our group deal with monitor lizards that were preventing her from getting sleep.

I think visitors to Ethiopia would be well served if they chose Robel to guide them.

TOM CASSEN

Charlotte, NC