Ethiopia is a land of dramatic natural contrasts and variety. Climatic conditions range from the drenched slopes of the fertile south-west, to the scorched arid eastern borderlands, and as such the vegetation is diverse.
- The highlands of the south and west contain the most extensive areas of indigenous rainforest anywhere in East Africa, whilst the central highlands are open and fertile, supporting a mosaic of grassland and cultivation.
- The Rift Valley south of Addis Ababa is filled with grassland and acacia trees, whilst to the west around Gambella lie steamy, marshy lowlands.
- From the moorlands and high plateaus of the Bale Mountains, to rich riparian woodlands surrounding rivers and lakes, Ethiopia offers far more than the barren desert landscape many people expect.
Although not famed as a place to see Africa's most notorious big mammals, Ethiopia does offer unique species of its own including the Ethiopian Wolf, Mountain Nyala, Gelada Baboon and Walia Ibex, not to mention a whole host of endemic bird life.