Lake Tana’s beauty can only be truly appreciated when you get out beyond the city to enjoy azure waters, a lush shoreline and rich birdlife. But even the lake's natural beauty plays second fiddle to its centuries-old monasteries, full of paintings and treasures, and some pretty impressive numbers: Tana is Ethiopia’s largest lake, covering more than 3500 sq km, and its waters are the source of the Blue Nile, which flows 5223km north to the Mediterranean Sea. [Lonely Planet]