Mount Entoto (Amharic: እንጦጦ) is the highest peak overlooking the city of Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. Mount Entoto is part of the Entoto mountain chain, reaching 3,200 meters above sea level.
It is also a historical place where Menelik II resided and built his palace, when he came from Ankober and founded Addis Ababa. It is considered a sacred mountain and holds many monasteries. It is also notable as the location of a number of celebrated churches, including Saint Raguel and Saint Mary.
The mountain is densely covered by eucalyptus trees which were imported from Australia during the reign of Emperor Menelik II and most of the planting took place during Emperor Haile Sillasie's reign; thus it is sometimes referred to as the "lung of Addis Ababa". The forest on the mountain is an important source of firewood to the city. It was also a source of building material in earlier times.
The Ethiopian Heritage Trust, a non-profit, non-governmental organization is working actively to change part of the mountain to its old state, a natural park. Entoto Natural Park is the northeastern rim of Addis Abeba on the southeastern slopes of Mt. Entoto covering an area of 1,300 hectors. It is situated at an altitude of 2,600 and 3,100 meters. Its annual average rainfall and temperature are 1200mm and 14°C respectively. The northern rim of the park serves as a watershed between Abay (Blue Nile) and Awash rivers.
- Bahru Zewde, Pioneers of Change in Ethiopia (Oxford: James Currey, 2002), pp. 23f
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