Addis Ababa was established in 1887 during the reign of Emperor Menelik. Several social institutions were established following the birth of the city. The following are worth mentioning: Empress Taytu hotel in 1908, Emperor II Menelik school and hospital from 1909-1910. Other institutions such as postal, telephone, telegram and hydroelectric power services as well as the Ethio- Djibouti Railway were introduced during the time of this great king.Although aged, there are 130 archaic residential houses, whose architectural elegance has stood the taste of time. The residence of Bitwoded (traditional Ethiopian military rank) Hailegiorgis Agedew, the residence of Ras Birru W/Gibreal, which has now become the Addis Ababa Museum, the one-story Sheik Hujele palace with eighty meter height, Emperor Menelik’s dining hall in Entoto area-on the outskirts of the city, the residence of the first British ambassador to Ethiopia in the premises of the British embassy and residence of Dejazmach Wube Atnaf Seged, which has now become the Addis Ababa Restaurant, are some of them that win the attention of tourists.
On the hilly part of the capital, there are fascinating churches. Among these are found two ancient churches, which are built at the time of the foundation of the city. These are the three-story and eight-sided St. Raguel church and Debre Tsehay St. Mary church. From these churches you can have a good view of the Awash and Abay basins.
St. Trinity Cathedral, Meskayehezunan holy savior church, Baeta church, St. Mary church, Balewold church, Genete Tsgie and other churches are also frequented by tourists. On this hilly area at a place called Ankorecha you find a cave, whose half part is destroyed during the Italian invasion. The column of this cave resembles that of the famous rock hewn churches of Lalibela, found at the northern part of the country. The cave is called Washa Micheal. Although built lately compared to the aforementioned churches, St. Trinity Cathedral located around a place locally called Arat Kilo and St. Micheal Church around Merkato gave grace and beauty to the city with their magnificent architectural designs.
Video: Addis Ababa – A city of surprises