Photos: Great CNN Feature on Lalibela

In Lalibela life feels largely untouched by the centuries. (Photo: CNN)


From all corners of a nation they come, often walking for hundreds of miles barefoot: Ethiopian Orthodox Christians on a once-in-a-lifetime journey.

Their destination is Lalibela in the north of Ethiopia. A town of approximately 20,000 people, Lalibela’s population swells five-fold in the first days of January, pilgrims converging to celebrate Genna (or Ledet) — Christmas according to the Ethiopian calendar.

What they’re here for is to take a path from darkness into the light; through 800 years of history and enter a “New Jerusalem” — tangible, permanent and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

But most of all, they’re here for God.

The House of St George, Lalibela. (CNN photo)

Pilgrims waiting to emerge from inside a tunnel at the House of St George, Lalibela. (CNN)

A group of pilgrims pray and read their bibles by candlelight around the churches of Lalibela. (CNN)

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