Ethiopia’s altitude ranges from mountain peaks of over 4000 meters above sea level in Semien Mountains, to 100 meters below sea level in the Dallol Depression of Afar. The Great Rift Valley that runs from Mozambique to Syria divides Ethiopia in to two parts, this rift valley separates the western and the eastern highlands; and these highlands gradually descend to the lowland areas in the east, west, and south of the country. Much of the country consists of high plateau and mountain ranges, which are dissected by numerous streams and rivers.
Despite its proximity to the equator, Ethiopia’s high altitude ensures a temperate, moderate even cool climate certainly not tropical. There are two seasons: the dry season prevails from October through May; the wet season runs from June to September. May is the warmest month and usually a time of bright sunny days. Temperatures are determined by altitude, with highlands (including Addis Ababa) rarely exceeding 25º C. In the lowlands it can get considerably hotter, while in the Danakil Depression it is exceeding 40ºC.