World Reviewer rating

Not yet rated

The Hottest Place on Earth

Listed under Deserts in Ethiopia.

  • Photo of The Hottest Place on Earth
  • Photo of The Hottest Place on Earth
Photo of The Hottest Place on Earth
Photo by flickr user filippo_jean
Pin It

Home of the Afar people, the Danakil desert, or Danakil Depression, in north east Ethiopia has the hottest recorded average temperature on earth, trumping Death Valley in the US. Temperatures regularly hit the mid 40s. A mining company mined huge quantities of potash here some years ago, but had to abandon the operation after two years because of extreme heat. Today the main - the only - commercial activity is salt mining, as it has been for thousands of years. Huge blocks of salt are levered out of the salt flats and cut in to 10 kilo blocks to be sold in the markets, having been transported across this baking desert by camel. They say the Afar people are able to work in this harsh environment because, like camels, they have an unusual ability to regulate body temperature.

The area is also stuffed with unique geology as well as active volcanoes, with fissures in the ground spewing lava and steam.

Written by  James Dunford Wood.

Comments, reviews and questions by other travellers


If you want a purely science doco, this one isnt for you. I was very interested in seeing the science behind "The hottest place on earth" however 90% of the documentary was wasted on the boring lives of the cast and crew. Seriously, i don't care about how you feel about the local culture or how far a goat travels in a day. This show could have been so much better if it wasnt for the self absorbed reporters who seemed to focus on their lives rather than the films title core focus.. remember .. that volcano? We finally get to see the result in the last 15 mins of this 3 part series.. what a waste of time! AM

i watch a film about theis area its a great movie i like it .. its called the hottest place on earth .. iam download it and watch it several times thaaaank u so much ..

Post a comment, review or question

I want to
My comment - optional
Rating - how would you rate this place or experience?

Who's been here

Similar Experiences

  • Sahara Desert

    The world's largest desert aside from Antarctica, the Sahara Desert is bounded in the North by the Atlas mountains and covers 8…

  • Kalahari Desert

    Extending from Botswana into areas of South Africa and Namibia, the Kalahari Desert's 900,000 square kilometers are unusually d…

  • Taklamakan Desert

    The name alone promises an unparalleled adventure: loosely translated, it means 'place of no return'. As the local story goes, …

Nearby Experiences

  • Lower Valley of the Awash

    The Awash valley contains one of the most important groupings of palaeontological sites on the African continent. The remains f…

  • Churches of Lalibela

    During the 11th to 13th centuries the Ethiopian state manifested as the Christian Zagwe dynasty and the most notable of its rul…

  • Lalibela Churches & Festival

    This rural town is known around the world for its monolithic churches which play an important part in the history of rock-cut a…

Related links

Contribute to this page