• Location: Horn of Africa
• Capital: Asmara
• Language: Arabic, Tigrinya, Kunama
• Population: 5,235,475
• Total Area: 117,600 sq km
• Currency: Nakfa
• Curious Alcohol Fact: Like many of the other Horn of Africa countries, alcohol
is not very common due to the religious beliefs and the plentiful supply of coffee and tea.
• Annual Average Liquor Consumption Per Capita: 1.53
• Most Popular Drinks: Spiced coffee and tea
Eritrea Travel Video:
The name ‘Eritrea’ is from the Latin for the Red Sea (Mare Erythraeum). The Red Sea is to the west of the country and it shares borders with Sudan, Ethiopia and Djibouti. The capital city is Asmara and is also the most populous in the country. The relief of thecountry is rugged as there are highlands and river gorges in various parts of the country.Eritrea is one of the youngest nations in Africa as it gained independence in 1993 and it has always being a very important country as a result of its strategic location. The Dahlak Archipelago in the Red Sea is also part of the country.
There are various ethnic groups in the country but the largest is the Tigray and the language spoken among them is called Tigrinya. There is also the Tigre and are not exactly the same as the Tigray. There are some other tribes such as the Nara, Afar, Kunama, Bilin, Saho and the Hidarab. Most of the Eritreans, irrespective of the tribal affiliation, are either farmers or cattle herders. However, in places close to the sea, like the port city of Masssawa, fishing is also very important. Eritreans are dark-skinned, with curly hair and are widely revered for their outstanding physical beauty. They also have beautiful hearts as they receive guests and tourists with incredible hospitality and warmth.
Throughout my stay in the country, food was the least of my worries, and this was because my hosts pampered me with all sorts of delicacies and mouth-watering dishes. One of such foods is the injera, which is a type of bread made locally. Most of the time, I took injera with spicy stews like tzingee which is made from vegetables and beef. Nothing tasted more nutritious, I must say. On the port city of Massawa and other cities close to the sea, fish and other seafood feature regularly in the diet. The most popular dish in the country is called kicha and like the injera, it is also a kind of bread but the difference is that it is embellished with spices and milk. One thing that I observed with many of the Eritrean meals is the heavy use of spices like ginger, curry and chili powder-hot!
Sites of Attraction
For many of the tourists like me, the Red Sea is always a place to visit. After a cruise with the locals, other places that you can visit include the Eritrean Highlands and the sea port at Massawa. All over the country, there are various places of worship: mosques and churches, many of which are true architectural wonders. I also took time to visit the famed Kobar Sink, a place renowned for its vast salt deposits.
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Special thanks to our contributors:
Daniel Krasnopolsky (Woodmere, NY, USA)
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).
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