Cultural Tours are a popular product in Tanzania that is mostly sold as an add-on to enrich main safari tour programs. Started with selected villages around Arusha in northern Tanzania and spreading out into other areas. These are traditionally existing villages which have been made accessible to visitors who may have a glimpse of the authentic lifestyle of the more than 120 tribes in rural Tanzania.
Besides enriching itineraries and adding quality to the tours offered in Tanzania, the cultural tours are generating direct income to the local communities that are being visited, contributing to their development. Thus by visiting the cultural sites the guests would be giving support to community health, water supply, primary education and many other social and economic projects carried out at village level as well as reforestation and protection of environment.
The Hadzabe are a nomadic tribe, which means if you travel to Lake Eyasi Lake on your own, you may not meet them at all. The best way to visit the Hadzabe tribe of Tanzania is to book with a tour operator. They have the skills to ensure that you have a great experience. A local guide will take you to Lake Eyasi, staying with you the entire time and translating the traditional Hadzabe language as you meet these unique people.
Their language is called Hadza and is a unique language that sounds like clicks they make with their tongues. Listening to them speaking is really an experience by itself and if you try to twist your tongue like they do you will realize how different and difficult the language is from what we know. When you visit the Hadzabe tribe, you’re experiencing their real way of life – there is no show the Hadzabe put on for the sake of tourists. This means that you’ll be completely immersed in the way they live.
When you visit with the Hadzabe you’ll be able to go hunting with the men of the tribe, seeing firsthand how these proud people have survived for years in the wilderness.
The men typically hunt at dawn and dusk, a time when wild animals approach nearby watering holes. They use bows and arrows that have been dipped in poison made from the Adenium shrub. Hunting with the Hadza is a one of kind experience that will be one of the highlights of your trip.
Visiting with the Hadzabe tribe in Tanzania is the ideal way for you to connect with a culture whose traditions are almost reverent in their simplicity.
Not only will you see the beautiful scenery around Lake Eyasi, but you’ll also learn how to forage for fruit and berries, how to use a bow and arrow, and how to cook over an open fire. Spending a day with this tribe is an experience you’ll never forget.
The Datoga people are of nilotic origins, classified as Highland Southern NIlotes. They are thought to have settled in the Lake Eyasi area about 3,000 years ago from Southern Sudan and Western Ethiopia highlands, where they originally lived before moving to this new region.
Customs and Traditions
The elongated ear lobes are a typical feature of the Datoga people. This alteration is sought-after and is not the only one. Girls have very big drawings on their face and shoulders, etched by carving marks in their flesh. Some even carve extremely deep marks to make the picture more visible.
The mask-shaped drawing on the woman’s face is a distintive mark which identifies members of the Datoga tribe.