How to get there
Dire Dawa, which is about 50 km from Harar, can be reached by air, rail or road from Addis Ababa. From there a minibus can be taken to Harar which will take about one hour. If you travel by train between Addis and Dire Dawa, tickets can only be bought on the day of departure. Get to the ticket office early as they usually sell out in under 30 minutes.
Where to stay
The government Harar Ras Hotel on the Dire Dawa road has comfortable rooms.
Consistently popular, and recently remodelled, is the Belayneh Hotel, located near the old town and bus station. Clean en-suite rooms are available as a double or triple.
Budget travellers might try the Lemlem Hotel on the Jijiga Road – clean rooms with a communal shower are available along with one en-suit room with a cold shower.
The dollar-a-night hotels dotted around the old town are mostly grotty and showerless, though the Academy Hotel has been recommended for those who want to soak up the atmosphere of being in the old town by night.