Lake Tana which is Ethiopia’s largest lake is the source as well as from which the famous Blue Nile begins its long journey up to Khartoum, and further to the Mediterranean. The Thirty seven islands which are scattered around the surface of this lake shelter extraordinary churches plus monasteries, many of which possess histories going back to the Thirteenth century. Nonetheless, it must be noted that the majority of the religious residences are not accessible to women. Among the most fascinating islands are: Debre Mariam, Birgida Mariam, Kebran, Dega Estephanos, Mitsele Fasiladas, Dek, Tana Cherkos plus Narga.
Kebran Gabriel is the main monastery visited by strictly male tourists, having its amazing cathedral-like building initially constructed at the end of the Seventeenth century. Also Dega Estephanos, which is as well not open to women, is found on an island within the lake; its monastery is arrived at by way of a extremely steep as well as winding path. Even though the church is fairly new (just a hundred years old), it hosts a Madonna painted back in the Fifteenth century. Nonetheless, the treasury of this Monastery is an excellent attraction, having the remnants of a number of Emperors, in addition to their jewels plus robes.
Around the peninsula Zegay are several other monasteries, for instance Ura Kidane Mehret plus Azwa Mariam, several of which are as well accessible to women visitors.
Close to Gorgora, at the extreme northern side of the lake, is the Susneyos palace a precursor of the beautiful castles plus palaces of Gonder, which dates back to the rule of Emperor Susneyos. Within the very area is the medieval church of Debre Sina Mariam which is of special significance.
Cruising or even sailing on Lake Tana is among the most pleasant adventures for visitors in this area, especially in the middle of the summer. On the lakeshores are various splendid birds including local plus migratory species which make this place an ideal paradise for bird watching.
People fascinated by bird watching should visit the Fasiladas Island, that is particularly renowned as a significant wetland. The entire Lake Tana area as well as the Blue Nile Gorge feature a great diversity of birds including the endemic and migratory. The diversity of habitats, ranging from the rocky crags to the riverain forests as well as the important wetlands, guarantee that several other diverse species are seen.