Category Tribes and peoples

Hamer Tribe


Also well known as the hamar or hammer, they are one of the most known tribes in Soutern Ethiopia.  They inhabit the territory east of the Omo River and have villages in Turmi and Dimeka. SuperStock_1566-284556 Tourists visit the hamer hoping to see a traditional leaping ceremony (the jumping of bulls).

They are cattle herders and practice agriculture.  Very colorful bracelets and beads are worn in their hair and around their waists and arms.  The practice of body modification is used by cutting themselves and packing the wound with ash and charcoal.  Some of the women wear circular wedge necklaces indicating that they are married.  Men paint themselves with white chalk to prepare for a ceremony.  Hair ornaments worn by the men indicate a previous kill of an enemy or animal.

HammerThe traditional bull jumpi...

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Mursi of Ethiopia


The Mursi tribes are an African tribe from the isolated Omo valley in Southern Ethiopia near the border with Sudan. There are an estimated 10,000 members of this beautiful, sedentary tribe, whose lip plated face plate decorations are a source of endless fascination. Long may they, and their wonderful culture, live on.mursi10
The Mursi have their own language called Mursi, which is classified as one of the Surmic languages. The Mursi have a reputation for being one of the more aggressive African tribes and are famous for their stick fighting ceremony – the donga.

As seen in these stunning photographs, their trademark ‘saucer’ lip plate (dhebi a tugoin) has become the chief visible distinguishing characteristic of the Mursi and made them a prime attraction for tourists...

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Karo People


Karo People also know as Kara is a small tribe with an estimated population between 1,000 and 3,000. They are closely related to the Kwegu tribe. They live along the east banks of the Omo River in southern Ethiopia and practice flood retreat cultivation. The crops that are grown by them are sorghum, maize and beans. Only small cattle are kept because of the tsetse flies.00028104-SPP-OMO-011.JPG

Karo People is very famous for there splendid body decoration: Body Painting and Body Scarification they paint their bodies and faces with white chalk to prepare for a ceremony. The chalk is mixed with yellow rock, red iron ore and charcoal to make its color like many other OMO VALLEY TRIBES.

Face masks are worn at times and they have clay hair buns with feathers in them...

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Konso Cultural Landscape


Konso Cultural Landscape is a 55km2 arid property of stone walled terraces and fortified settlements in the Konso highlands of Ethiopia. It constitutes a spectacular example of a living cultural tradition stretching back 21 generations (more than 400 years) adapted to its dry hostile environment. The landscape demonstrates the shared values, social cohesion and engineering knowledge of its communities. The site also features anthropomorphic wooden statues – grouped to represent respected members of their communities and particularly heroic events – which are an exceptional living testimony to funerary traditions that are on the verge of disappearing. Stone steles in the towns express a complex system of marking the passing of generations of leaders.Konso2

The Konso Cultural Landscape is characte...

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Daasanech or Dassanech Tribe

Dasanech tribe

Also known as the Galeb or Geleb, this tribe lives just north of Kenya’s Lake Turkana.  Their neighboring tribe is the Turkana people.  The Daasanech are pastralists (cattle herders), but due to the harsh territory, they have moved south to grow crops and fish.  Cattle are used by the tribesman for meat, milk and clothing.  Often their cattle die from disease and drought.  Of all the tribes in the Omo Valley, the Daasanech are the poorest.Dasanech tribe2

Because the Daasanech people come from multiple ethnic groups, both men and women must agree to be circumcised.  There are eight clans that make up the Daasanech tribe, each having its own name.  They are the Elele, Inkabelo, Inkoria, Koro, Naritch, Oro, Randal and the Ri’ele...

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benna tribe

Bana, and Benna are other spellings for the Bena people.Banna and Tsamai people are the first tribes you will meet on the way to Omo Valley Tribes at southern Ethiopia. When you first see them, you understand what really does mean to be in Africa with people still living the same life as they used to live hundred years ago. They are neighbors with the Hammer tribe and Tsemai it is believed that the Bena actually originated from them centuries ago. The markets in Key Afer and Jinka are often visited by them.banna-tribe-ethiopia-rod-waddington

Just like most of the indigenous tribes in the lower Omo Valley, the Bena practice ritual dancing and singing. The men often have their hair dressed up with a colorful clay cap that is decorated with feathers...

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