WATCH: Ethiopians have 13 months in their calendar so they only celebrated Christmas this week

2019-01-09 14:48
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Not everyone in the world celebrates Christmas on the 25th of December.

In Ethiopia, their 13-month Julian calendar marks the festive day as falling on 7 January, and thousands of Ethiopian Orthodox Christians travel for weeks to their famous Lalibela rock churches in the Lasta Mountains.

These churches were carved out of colossal monoliths in the 12th century. Local stories claim that angels helped built these amazing structures, and are holy sites for Coptic Christians.

QUICK GUIDE TO ETHIOPIA: Easy eVisa travel for South Africans 

Ethiopians in christmas mass

Ethiopian Orthodox pilgrims sing during during the Christmas Eve celebration at Saint George's Church in Lalibela. (Photo: Eduardo Soteras, AFP)

Mand holding a cross at lalibela

Ethiopian Orthodox priests attend the Christmas celebration at Saint Mary's Church. (Photo: Eduardo Soteras, AFP)

Known as the African country that was never colonised, Ethiopia has a vast ancient history still seen today in its archaeological artefacts and ruins of Christian temples from long ago.

It's also quite famous for its cuisine found in restaurants around the world, but you can experience it firsthand in its country of origin.

This east African country is also the origin point for the Nile river - the longest in the world - where the Blue Nile falls thunderously creating a massive waterfall.

Ethiopia holds important insights into Africa's past, and is a must-visit when travelling through the Horn of Africa.

READ: Ethiopia: Old-world Africa, brimming with modern life 

Ehtiopian standing in the corner of a lalibela roc

Ethiopian Orthodox pilgrims pray during the Christmas Eve celebration at Saint George Church. (Photo: Eduardo Soteras, AFP)

Night christmas mass ethiopia

Ethiopian Orthodox pilgrims attend the Christmas eve celebration at Saint Mary's Church. (Photo: Eduardo Soteras, AFP)

Mass christmas congregation at lalibela

Ethiopian Orthodox pilgrims attend the Christmas Eve celebration at Savior's Church (Beit Medhane Alem) (Photo: Eduardo Soteras, AFP)

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