The Stele site of Tiya in Gurage Zone is registered in the UNESCO world heritage list as world heritage sites in 1980. Tiya is distinguished by 36 standing stones or stelae. They mark a large, prehistoric burial complex of an ancient Ethiopian culture.

The site contains more than 40 ancient stelae. The largest of which stands up to 3.9m high. They form only one cluster and are intriguing and mysterious. Almost nothing is known about the monoliths carves or their purpose. Most of the stones are engraved with enigmatic symbols, notably swords.


The Lower Awash Valley site, located about 300 km northeast of Addis Ababa, is one of the most important archeological sites of Africa, has evidence of activity dating back to 4 million years and accompanying human evolution.

Tools have been found here as well as traces of mealsshelters, pebble tools, two-edged hand-axes, etc. Fossilized bones of hippopotamus, rhinoceros, elephant, and various antelope have also been found here.

If one walks upstream along the banks of the river, some of these Stone Age tools can often be seen, particularly in the dry washes. Remember, however, that collecting of Stone Age artifacts is prohibited.


Lucy, 3.5 million years old, and the recent discovery Ramides, 4.4 million years old hominid fossil, were discovered in Haddar, along the Awash River.

They completed the missing link between Apes and men. Melka Konture is also an important archaeological site where 1.5 million years old stone tools were found. Several cave paintings and stone monuments are found in different parts of the country like Dilla, southern Ethiopia and Dire Dawa, eastern Ethiopia.

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