The Southern Omo Valley
Paradise of Tribal Society
This unique route takes you to one the of most isolated and out-of-this-world lifestyle of the different tribes residing on the bank of Omo River which eventually flows to Lake Turkana, Kenya.
You will witness how these people have managed to keep their culture and identity uninfluenced for thousands of years. Over 16 different tribes live around Omo Valley and they all have different culture and practices.
It is amazing to participate in some of the weirdest societal activities like the Bull-jumping and Evangadi Dance of Hamer tribe and the Donga stick fights of Mursi. The marketing days are a good opportunity to see very colorful and pure culture of trading where at some point Bartering can be seen.
The tribes find ways of differentiating themselves from one another and the famous Mursi are known for their Women to have their lower lips cut and insert clay as a means of beautifying themselves
This metropolitan town is the gate of the Omo Valley adventure and offers a lot for tourists. The town bisects two of Ethiopia famous Lakes, Abbya and Chammo. A Boat Cruise on the second deepest Lake in Ethiopia in the morning to see the wildest African Crocodile and Hippopotamus, plenty big bird species; are some of the natural activities combined with the original cultural adventure of Omo Valley tribes
Highly known for their famous Bull-Jumping ceremony, Hamers are one of the many tribes living in the Omo valley. Every man has to jump queue of Bulls as a mark of maturity and the successful ones will be free to start looking for his fiancée: the cruelest part of the ceremony however is the Nasty stick whipping of the girls as mark of showing their love & support to the boy who is jumping the Bulls—it is normal to see the scar on the back of the every Hamer girl. Back to the village, the Evangadi dance will be held colorful to cheer the boy for his achievement.
The most famous of all tribes, Mursi are found inside the Mago National Park. Isolated from other tribes, Mursi people are semi-nomadic and changes living place frequently than other tribes. The Mursi woman put lip-plate on her lower lip to beautify herself. They are very proud of their culture and believe they are different than other tribes: no other tribe practices this painful lip-plating. Men have to fight a Donga for the beautiful one: very dangerous game could result in killing the enemy. The government is interfering and stops this practice nowadays.
The most hardworking community in the Omo Valley, Konso is famously known for their land terracing agricultural system and their grave markers called Wakka. When a Konso hero dies, wooden grave marker, Wakka, will be erected on the cemetery and that includes the enemies and animals he killed. Konso is registered by UNECO as a world heritage site and their communal life and conflict- resolving strategies are example for many.
Dassanech or Galeb
Living near the bank of Omo Valley, Dassanech people are the poorest tribe of all. They hardly practice agriculture as they are living on sand but they find other ways of surviving. This is one tribe where circumcision of girls is practical. Their closest neighbors are Hamer and the Kenyan Turkana people.
Karo, Nyangatom , Arebore…
These collections are known for their elaborated body painting and jewelries. Most of them share practice but it is evident you will find difference on how they practically perform it.