Babile Elephant Sanctuary
The 698,200ha Babile Elephant Sanctuary is located 560km east of Addis Ababa and 25km south of the city of Harar. In part it encompasses a plateau, as well as the lowlands of the valleys of the Erer, Daketa, Fafen, Gobele and Borale Rivers; all being tributaries of the Shabelle River. Elevations range from 1000masl in the south to 1750masl in the north.
Large parts of the park's lowlands have shrub and tree savannah, which is often very dense with both shrubs and cactus bushes. In the highlands, along the slopes of the ravines one often finds a very interesting dwarf Euphorbia, while the more commonly found Euphorbia trees grow native on the plateau of the reserve.
Other mammals living in the park are the Black-maned lion, Leopard, Cheetah, the Hamadryas Baboon, Papio hamadryas, Menelik’s bushbuck, Soemmerring’s Gazelle, and greater and lesser kudu. The bird list of 227 species includes the endemic Salvadori’s serine. Of the reptiles, noteworthy are enormous tortoises and other animals.
Babille is also home to the hot thermal springs, used to supply much of eastern Ethiopia with bottled mineral water. Just beyond the main entrance road into the park is the interesting geologic rock formations at Dakata’s Rock Valley with a wonderful balancing rock as well as lower hoodoos.