Book Description: A new edition of the essential guide for independent travelers to this unusual and remarkable African country, which has emerged from its war-torn past to welcome tourists with its reclaimed independence. This update provides the freshest source of information published on a compact and traveler-friendly country that has seen many changes. The Eritreans' overwhelming hospitality makes their country readily explorable with the aid of the maps, notes, and language section in this guide; and the interior, rich in historical remains, is well worth visiting. Its colonial past has stamped the capital, Asmara, with the charm of a southern Italian town, featuring numerous bars, cafés, pastry shops, broad avenues, and markets, plus a Roman Catholic cathedral. Eritrea's main port, Massawa, is a natural gateway to diving off some of the 350 islands in the Red Sea. The Dahalak Islands are easily accessible from the mainland for travelers and Eritrea provides the background to the natural history of this treasure trove of fish, corals, and shells, and haven for birds, dolphins, turtles, and the rare dugong.