Bale Dirre Sheikh Hussein Shrine

  1. Back on the main road from Goba, continue heading east, where the road takes a sharp bend as it crosses the Web River and begins to head north through the towns of Ginir and Jara before coming to Shek Husen, seventy-eight Kilometres (48 miles) north of Ginir. The site, Ethiopia’s most important place of Muslim pilgrimage, is situated on the borders of Arsi and Bale regions and quite close to the border of Harerge.

Sheikh Hussein is visited twice a year by many thousands of pilgrims from all over eastern Ethiopia, and comprises a large complex of mosques, shrines, and tombs surrounded by a stout wall. There are also a number of man-made caves and artificial ponds in the area. Holy white chalk from the caves is taken back by the pilgrims to many parts of the country.

Tourist activity

  • Religious activity/pilgrim- Religious tourism, also known as faith tourism refers to traveling individually or in groups to holy sites. This place is referred as meka of the poor
  • Tombstone- Tombstone tourist is an individual who enjoys history of famous deaths, cemeteries, epitaphs and gravestone rubbing. At dirre sheick hussien there are tombs of famous religious sehabas.
  • Cultural activity-Cultural tourism is where travelers engage with a country or religion’s culture, especially the lifestyle and other elements that shaped the life of the people
  • Historical exploration- the shrine was built 1000 years ago and this heritage is an opportunity to tourists with research purpose and history lovers.
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