Maasai village tours : Many of us grew up watching National Geographic or Discovery channel films about the wild Africa. There is one warrior tribe that nearly always appears on television as the cameras pan across the plains of East Africa: the Maasai. They are clad in striking reds and blues. These pastoralists who lead a semi-nomadic lifestyle reside in and around the Northern Tanzanian and Southern Kenyan rift valley regions. You will witness the vibrant Maasai grazing their livestock or attempting to sell you their artwork as you travel on your safari towards the national parks in this area.
But did you know that as part of your safari tour, you can also go to their village and engage with them while getting a glimpse into their distinctive way of life and customs? Whether that sounds intriguing, see whether you would like to include a Maasai village tour in your itinerary by reading the full article to learn more about what to expect. It typically takes one to one and a half hours to visit the Maasai community, and you are supposed to tip the Maasai village head $20 (per client). But, it is also possible to arrange for you to stay at the village for a longer period of time. Please verify with your sales consultant for a longer visit you will not regret.
The First Look.
The villagers will assemble to welcome you to their land as soon as your guide leads you into the settlement. Tall men and women will begin to jump and sing as they are clad in the vibrant crimson Shuka. In order to attract ladies, the Maasai males will jump as high as they can during the dance, and the air will be filled with the lovely singing of the women. But you are welcome to take part in the festivities as well. When the powerful warriors approach and cover you in their exquisitely crafted necklaces, you can join them in dancing or jumping.
Getting to really know them.
You can now really get to know the Maasai up close and personal after the exciting beginning. This is something you could never have accomplished by seeing them on television or by simply driving by and taking note of them. You will be brought straight into the Boma, or village, by the villagers. A Maasai camp consists of a number of mud homes surrounded by branches of native Acacia tortilis, Seyal, and Sisal trees.
You are welcome to speak and ask questions of the villagers inside the camp. After all, this is supposed to be a cultural exchange. The guide will interpret for you in Maa, the local language. Additionally, you can practice long jumps and spear throwing with a Maasai warrior by your side. They developed their prowess through these competitions, which are a component of their military traditions. Participating in these competitions will then be a rather special safari experience. In order to view how the families live, you can also go inside the homes. However, you may find the homes to be somewhat dark and small.
A visit to the Maasai school.
Despite being a nomadic group that mostly depends on their surroundings for resources, the Maasai nonetheless practice commerce and education in their modern culture. The guide will take you to meet some of the prettiest members of the little society little children at schools after you get to tour the houses and participate in a number of thought-provoking activities with the adults. When you enter a classroom, built out of twigs and mud as well, the kids will stand up and show off their knowledge. In particular, their proficiency in English. The children will sing-along with you while they chant their ABCD and numbers, and they may even put on a few English tunes.
You may observe, though, that this portion of the tour seems a little manufactured. They’ll probably do the same thing for the following group of visitors. However, you don’t have to be concerned about how this may impact their schooling. The majority of the students in these programs are younger than seven and have not yet been enrolled in a traditional school. When they are old enough, children who want to study hard will be sent to a regular school and won’t be asked to perform these kinds of performances for visitors.
Donations towards the education of these children are welcome if you so choose. Therefore, having some spare coin on hand would be useful. Donations of books, crayons, and pens are also accepted. However, you have to first disclose these goods to the village elders. It must be noted that not all the Maasai villages have a school.
After you’ve completed the village tour, things get complicated. You will be shown where to purchase different handicrafts and jewelry made by Maasai people. The initial costs given are far higher than the actual rates (about 4 to 10 times higher!) that you would pay for these products in marketplaces like Arusha or Mto Wa Mbu, even though the variety may be decent and you may feel compelled to purchase items as keepsakes.
You can offer a rate that suits you if you consider the amount they quote to be a donation to a community that is impoverished. However, if you are determined to purchase an item and are not ready to donate at that time, don’t be afraid to bargain and get the price lowered. Should the whole bartering and pushy sales style make you uneasy, you might want to think again before visiting the Maasai village. Nonetheless, we advise our clients to consider these purchases as gifts to the Maasai village. The creation of national parks and reserves has drastically altered the Maasai way of life, because many of their everyday needs are met by the money that visitors bring in.
Maasai community that hosts you at the temporary camp, which is set up in tourist circuits (particularly in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area at the crater rim) to provide Maasai village visits, changes every few weeks. They therefore only have a brief window of opportunity to earn money before returning to their home villages and their more traditional way of life.
Now that you’ve gone shopping, your visit will officially end. Even though you will be fully immersed in the culture, there will be moments on the tour that appear produced and moments that look authentic. Nevertheless, it will be an experience unlike anything else. You will see how significant they have been for the environment when you speak with them. Their collaboration has been essential to the ongoing existence of famous national parks and ecosystems, and their expertise has aided the government in its efforts to conserve the natural world. You’ll also be able to respect their steadfastness in this rapidly evolving world. Thus, savor each moment, absorb as much as you can, and broaden your understanding of the environment you inhabit.
Maasai Village Tours occur in multiple locations.
RIM of Ngorongoro Crater, the Maasai village that receives the most visitors is this one. Customers travelling through Ngorongoro to reach the Serengeti or crater tours can easily reach it. Because of its crater rim location, it’s also the most picturesque of all. But compared to other villages, this feels more manufactured, and the Maasai here are more aggressive in their sales tactics.
There is a Maasai village in the vicinity of Lake Natron, and clients that include Lake Natron in their schedule can take advantage of these tours. This visit feels more authentic than other places since the Maasai villages you visit are permanent (in contrast to many other destinations where Maasai tours take place in villages where inhabitants rotate periodically to share cash gained from giving these tours for clients). You’ll have the opportunity to watch the cows being milked, observe the Maasai people building their stoves, and even participate in these activities. Here, you can even extend your visit to a Maasai hamlet by up to six hours.
There are more Maasai communities close to Mto Wa Mbu, Tarangire, Arusha, and Mikumi National Park, the boundary between the Serengeti and Ngorongoro, and Moshi. The majority of these communities are situated along route to significant locations like Tarangire National Park, Arusha National Park, and so forth. If the clients still want to see a Maasai hamlet but are unable to make it to the villages on the crater rim or around Lake Natron, they can still visit these places.