Our Staff

We firmly believe that our guides are adequately trained and experienced, having 10+ years of work experience in the tourism branch. All our guides are professionally trained, speak fluently English and Amharic (in some cases also other languages) and will serve you as the best intermediaries between you and the local community.
All guides work with enthusiasm, commitment and dedication to conserve the natural and social balance in the Simien Mountains area and all over Ethiopia.

Marco Degasper from Italy and Franziska Gerling from Germany are contributing with their own expertise as well as with a considerable network of contacts with international organisations and agencies. They set up the company with a functional and well arranged structure. Their organizational capability and accuracy provides confidence to foreign tourists and is a guarantee for high organizational standard and proper management.

Here are the full profiles of the staff of SimienEcoTours:

Marco Degasper Marco Degasper (General Manager, Office Addis Ababa)
Marco was born on October 21st, 1979 in Bruneck, Province of Bolzano in the North of Italy and speaks fluently German, Italian and English. He worked as project manager in Bolzano for almost 10 years (PMP certified), and he is an enthusiastic mountain climber and marathon runner. It was precisely because of running that he discovered his passion for Ethiopia. Since 2009 he has been there several times, for tourism trips, but also for different other projects. Finally he and his friends set up SimienEcoTours, the company that Marco is now leading as General Manager. Marco is now based in Addis Ababa where he lives since 2014 with his Ethiopian wife and 2 children.

Franziska Gerling Franziska Gerling (Office Europe)
Franziska was born on June 27th, 1977 in Leipzig in Germany. Since 2002 she has been active in different projects in Ethiopia and from 2009 she has been living in Addis Ababa for 7 years and working at the German Embassy School as an art and biology teacher. Furthermore she was involved in different projects, such as reforestation and beekeeping in Masha, the construction of a school and the organization of support for schoolchildren in Debark, the education for teachers in Debark and in Hawassa and a wheelchair workshop including skill training facility for disabled persons in Addis Ababa. At the end of 2015 Franziska moved back to Germany with her 2 children and where now she is at disposal of our European customers.

Solomon Girmay Sintayehu Solomon Girmay Sintayehu (Tour Guide, PR)
Solomon was born on February 3rd, 1978 in the small and remote village of Mekarebya in the Simien Mountains. He completed his primary school there. Having finished his primary education he moved to Debark where he attended high school. While working as a teacher for 3 years in a poor village in the Simien Mountains, he obtained his diploma in general management and a first degree in English. He has been working as a tour guide for the last 13 years and collected a vast amount of knowledge and experience in organizing tours and guiding visitors. For more than 3 years Solomon was the chairman of the “Walia Guide Association”, the association of the tourist guides based in Debark.

Tadele Molla Tegegne Tadele Molla Tegegne (Office Gondar, Operator)
Tadele was born on August 27th, 1984 in the small village of Tsyon in the Simien Mountains. He attended elementary school there and finished high school some years later in Debark. Having successfully passed the examination for becoming a tourist guide he has been doing this job since 2004. In addition to this, in July 2016 he graduated in “tourism management” at the University of Gondar obtaining another professional degree. Beside this he has been working as an individual tour guide for the last 13 years and has run an increasing number of tours which he arranged and organized. Tadele succeeded Solomon in the position of chairman of the “Walia Guide Association” and led the association for 3 years.

Birhan Asmamaw Alem Birhan Asmamaw Alem (Tour Guide, Accounting)
Birhan was born on November 11th, 1983 in the small village known as Adigse which is situated in the surroundings of the Simien National Park. He finished his primary school in his native village and attended high school in Debark. He has achieved a 1 year training course in accounting and subsequently worked for 3 years in an NGO as a micro-finance officer. He has obtained his diploma in law recently and is now studying economics. In the tourism branch he has been working as a guide since 2005 and increased continuously his knowledge and experience in the tourism sector. Birhan was also chairman of the “Walia Guide Association” for a short time.

Yirga Mekuriaw Alemu Yirga Mekuriaw Alemu (Tour Guide, Logistics)
Yirga was born on March 8th, 1983 in Debark, and is a mountain and tourist guide in Debark and Gondar. After completing within 2 years a geography course and passing the examination for mountain guiding, he obtained the necessary certification for working professionally with tourists. In addition, he has obtained his diploma in tour guiding and has rich experience in organizing and leading large foreign tourist groups. Yirga is our first mountain biking guide and still active as bikeguide.

Elyas Tarekegn Alemu Elyas Tarekegn Alemu (Tour Guide)
Elyas was born on April 8th, 1994, in Merssa in Northern Ethiopia. He has attended primary, secondary and preparatory school in Merssa and then joined the University of Gondar for a three years study in the tourism field (tourism management). After completing the bachelor study Elyas moved to the capital Addis Ababa to attend a German language course at the Goethe Institute. Since then he is guiding tours in English and German language, first as freelancer and since 2018 as employee of SimienEcoTours. Elyas is a passionate hiker and biker and one of our mountainbike guides.

Abebech Eshetie Adane Abebech Eshetie Adane (Accounting & Office)
Abebech was born on April 18th, 1994, in Gondar. She completed her elementary school in Gondar Meseret and her high school education in Fasilides Gondar. In June 2015 she obtained her first degree in Biotechnology at the University of Gondar, and latere in 2019 the one in Accounting & Finance. Before joining SimienEcoTours as secretary and accountant in 2017, she already gained a lot of knowledge in accounting while working in the hotel industry in Gondar for three years. She is fluent in English and Amharic and obtained a Computer Science Diploma after taking a 6-month course.

Abraraw Adane Abraraw Adane (Driver)
Abraraw was born on May 21st, 1981 in Gondar in Amhara Region where he finished both his primary and secondary school. After completing his high school, he obtained the driving license and subsequently worked as a taxi driver in the capital of Amhara Region. Afterwards he was employed as a professional driver at head quarters of the Simien Mountains National Park collecting a lot of experience in driving dirt and off road with all kind of vehicles, but especially with 4WD. He also gained the knowledge about engines and the car mechanics. After these 8 years Abraraw changed workplace and is now driving for SimienEcoTours since August 2013.

Bekele Bekele Urge Degaga (Driver)
Bekele was born on November 22nd 1970 in Addis Ababa. After completing grade 12 at school he began working as mechanic. During 15 years of work experience as mechanic in a garage he gained a considerable knowledge of the mechanics of different cars. After these 15 years and obtaining the driving license he began to work as driver and has collected experience for different tour operators. In 2015, after driving for more than 12 years, Bekele joined SimienEcoTours.

Abraham Abraham Takele Maru (Driver)
Abrham was born on December 3rd 1985. He finished secondary and high school in Gondar, after that he got his diploma in Tour Operation from the Black Lion College in Addis Ababa. He obtained the driving license 9 years ago and gained a lot of experience. Also during that time he gained the knowledge about engines and the car mechanics. Since 2015 he works as a driver for SimienEcoTours.

Haile Hailemariam Negash (Driver)
Haile was born on July 28th 1985 in Debark near to the Simien Mountains. There he finished first, secondary and high school. After that he got his diploma in Tour Guide from the Debark TVET College. Starting from then he was sometimes driving, sometimes guiding tourists in that area. While working the tough and rough roads of the Simien Mountains he gained a lot of experience in driving. In the meanwhile Haile has been to all corners of Ethiopia. He joined SimienEcoTours as a driver in 2016.

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