Steles of Axum Tours – Ethiopia, Aksum

By Muluken Girma,

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Steles of Axum


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Steles of Axum, Aksum, Ethiopia
Hours : 08:30 AM - 05:00 PM

About this place

Axum which is the earliest capital of Ethiopia dating back from the 1st Century BC to the 7th Century AD is most famous for its Steles or Obelisks. The Steles of Axum are about 50 in number and were carved out of a single piece of strong granite rocks in the 4th Century AD. These steles are one of the historical sites of Ethiopia which are in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites List.

The tallest of these steles (obelisks) is 33 meters in height and weighs more than 500 tones but it is found now in six big broken pieces. The still-standing tallest stele measures 26 meters.

What makes this site more interesting and wonderful, apart from the huge work of carving and erecting such enormous block of stone, is that how they transported to the place they are erected now from about four km away quarry.

The steles were erected in honor of the different important kings of the time. These steles were decorated to imitate a multi story buildings and the top of the steles are decorated with a sign which is believed to be a sign of fertility or productivity.

Axum is found 1000 km north of Addis Ababa. The easiest way to get there is by using one of the daily flights of the Ethiopian Airlines. 

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