The monastery complex is situated on a terrace between a cliff and the gorgle of one of the tributaries of the Blue Nile.
None of the original buildings of Debre Libanos survive. Current buildings include the church over Tekle Haymanot’s tomb, which Emperor Haile Selassie ordered to be constructed in 1961.
Along the side of the church, you cross a river and proceed on foot up a hill for about 15 minutes. According to legend, the Ethiopian Saint, Tekle Haimanot, prayed for 7 years (or 29 years, depending who you ask).
The legend says that he stood on one foot for so long that the other foot fell off. Sick people queue to receive holy water (which is believed to be a sign of the saint’s prayer).