Washa Michael

Washa Michael is a ruined old palace and church on the top hills of Mount Yeka, Addis Ababa. It is carved out of solid rock. It is a monolithic church carved out of a huge rock in about 320 A.D by two Axumite brothers Kings of Ezana and Sayzana, later called ABRAHA and ATSBAHA.

Atop the Yeka hills is a rich treasure of the old ruins of a rock-hewn church and Palace, which is said to have been hosting 44 replicas ‘tabots’ of the original Ark of the Covenant at Axum. The 44 Arks were later spread throughout the City of Addis Ababa in the escape from Italian destruction.

With their palace at Axum, the two brothers Kings Eza and Sayzana ruled as far as Yemen, Puntland, far into the South and West. They were the first kings to get Christianized and made Christianity an official state religion. After they accepted Christianity, these kings built monasteries, mostly carved out of solid rocks across their kingdom.

Washa Michael is such one cut entirely of a single rock on the top hills of Mount Yeka, Addis Ababa. It is now a ruined old palace and church.

The monolitic church is 1700 years old. It was built at about 320 A.D. (E.C) by two Tigrayan kings ruling Ethiopia from Axum whose names were Ezana and Sayzana and later renamed ABRAHA & ATSBAHA.

Other than this, ABRAHA & ATSBAHA also built so many rock-hewn churches throughout Ethiopia, preached the Bible, and made Christianity an official state religion throughout the country from Tigrai, Hamassen, Seraye to Jimma Enarya.


As it has been written in their chronicle, Sayzena (Atsbaha) built his palace in the South at the mountain of Yerer near Debrezeyt and administered the Southern Kingdom. Reaching the pick of spiritual wisdom and using the heavenly chariots of Enoch and Elijah, they moved from place to place and accomplished their life task.


The palace at Yerer was a seat for the king in his reign in the West, South, and East Ethiopia. A clear description, a sketch of the original building, and ruins of the building are notably observed on the gate. This historic and religious treasure along with the green surrounding creates magnificent pleasure to visit. It can be visited in half a day either on foot or by car.

This place is least promoted due to ethnic biases. It was built by Tigrayan kings from Axum, and the ethnic hate and bias from Amhara towards Tigrayans have covered the importance of the place. Promoting it will also question their false narration that states Addis Ababa was established by King Menelik II, which in fact was established by these kings 1700 years ago.