Welcome to Africa’s secretive nation

Eritrea Independence Day Tour

Join us on a journey through Eritrea, a beautiful country with incredible Italian art deco architecture, white beaches and a very friendly people. The country is known to many people as the ‘North Korea of Africa’, because of the strict dictatorship that reigns there. The inhabitants however, will welcome you with open arms and are very curious about tourists visiting their country. During this tour you will also celebrate Independence Day, marking the day Eritrea officially became independent from Ethiopia.

CultureRoad Travel
Eritrea Independence Day Tour: EUR 1545 1545
Somaliland Combo: EUR 2640 2640
Eritrea Independence Day Tour

General info

Start date21 May 2025
End date25 May 2025
Days5 days / 4 nights
Price€ 1,545
IncludingAccommodation (shared)
Transportation on the ground
Western & local guide
Entry fees
ExcludingInternational flights
Single room (€ 250)
Lunch & Dinner
Tips for the guide
Personal expenses
This offer is covered by the STO Garant guarantee. You can find the conditions for this guarantee scheme on STO Garant’s website.


Wednesday 21 May – Asmara

  • Arrival at your convenience to Asmara – the capital city of Eritrea which has flights between Cairo, Istanbul, Dubai, Jeddah, Khartoum, and Milan. Those who are joining us from Somaliland will arrive on Ethiopian Airlines flight at 5:00pm in Asmara.
  • OR: arrival from the Somaliland Independence Day Tour.
  • Be greeted at the airport by our Eritrean driver and dropped off to our hotel – Crystal Hotel.
  • Pre-tour meeting will be held at the lobby of our hotel at 7:30pm to discuss tour itinerary and to meet new fellow travellers.
  • Head out for dinner and drinks at Harnassien Restaurant. For those keen we’ll stop by the bowling alley for a step back in time.
  • Overnight in Asmara

Thursday 22 May – Asmara – Massawa

  • Early morning start with breakfast at hotel and begin our 120km journey to Massawa – a colourful port town mixed with Italian, Egyptian and Ottoman architecture built along Africa’s Red Sea coastline.
  • Highlight: On the way we’ll stop for scenic photos of the forgotten railway connecting Asmara to Massawa constructed between 1887 and 1932 during the Italian Eritrea colony. Sadly, this line is no longer in operation. We’ll also stop to explore the abandoned sparkling water factory and railway stations.
  • Once arriving in Massawa we’ll visit the 3 Tanks Monument – a memorial of three tanks (Tiger, Jaguar, Commander) that were instrumental in Operation Fenkil which led to the liberation of Massawa after a brutal Ethiopian occupation.
  • Lunch in Massawa at the “Salam Restaurant”. Fresh fish prepared in traditional oven. This is a real local experience.
  • Highlight: We’ll then board a boat and set sail to Green Island located 5km off Massawa – one of our favourite beaches in all of Africa. The white sandy beach and crystal blue waters offers a fantastic spot to unwind and enjoy a swim. Snorkelling is also available.
  • Explore ruins from the early Arabic/Islamic settlers of the 8th century, and also some local Tigranyan villages.
  • Dinner at Almaz Bar & Restaurant. There, we can try Ja-Ja fish, an incredible stir-fry made up of thick pieces of fish. After dinner, let’s explore the nightlife of Massawa and find some bars to mingle.
  • Overnight in Massawa at an hotel reminiscent of the era of the Italians, the Grand Dahlak Hotel.

Friday 23 May – Massawa – Asmara

  • Highlight: Breakfast at our hotel and make a visit a local school to learn about Eritrea’s education system and meet with the children.
  • Visit the Northern Red Sea Regional Museum – artifacts from 800BCE all the way to the struggle of the independence war is displayed and explained by a local English speaking museum guide.
  • Highlight: We’ll go on a walking tour to take in the unique mixture of Turkish and Italian architectural designs stopping at all sites of interest – Massawa was the capital of the Italian Colony of Eritrea until the seat of the colonial government was moved to Asmara in 1897.
  • Explore the former winter residence of Emperor Haile Selassie which was originally constructed in 1872 by the Ottomans.
  • Lunch in Massawa before returning back to Asmara
  • Highlight: On arrival we’ll check out one of the largest tank graveyards we have ever discovered. APCs, Soviet tanks, aircrafts, vintage cars.. this place has it all! Most are leftovers from the war with Ethiopia.
  • Visit the City Hall, one of the oldest institutions in Africa. Here you will see an exhibition about the 30-year struggle for independence from Ethiopia.
  • Walk down Harnett Street, here you will find a lot of festivities for Independence Day, including traditional and modern dance.
  • Around midnight there are fireworks to start the holiday.
  • Overnight stay in Asmara.

Saturday 24 May – Asmara – INDEPENDENCE DAY

  • If you like, you can go to the relay of 21 shots that herald Independence Day at 6 in the morning.
  • Highlight: Walk through the centre of Asmara. Along the way we see the spectacular art deco buildings of the city. Most of them were built around the beginning of the 20th century. During the walk you will see the post office (1916), Albergo Italia (1899), Hotel Hamasien (1916) and the presidential palace (1907 ).
  • Visit the art galleries along Main Liberation Avenue.
  • Highlight: We go to the Asmara Stadium at 3pm. Here are the biggest festivities of the day. There will be performances by artists, military orchestras and the Eritrean Air Force will fly over in special formations.
  • We go back into town, where several parties are still going on.
  • Dinner and drinks to close out the Independence celebrations at a traditional restaurant, Hed Mona, where you can sample injera and local alcohols… followed by a dance party!
  • Overnight stay in Asmara.

Sunday 25 May – Asmara

  • End of tour.