singing samburu warriors

Listen to the Singing Wells of the Samburu tribe

Singing Wells cultural excursion

The essence of the Singing Wells cultural excursion

Immerse yourself in one of the Samburu tribe’s most significant traditions. Fall in step with the Samburu warriors as they lead their cattle to a dry river bed in the early morning. With water a precious resource in this dry and desolate land, the warriors dedicate the day to digging deep wells for drinking water for their livestock. Watch as the tall warriors strip naked and begin to sing as they dig. Deep and resonant, the melody creates a hypnotic rhythm that the tribe works to as one. Each warrior’s herd will recognise and respond to their master’s voice, using it to locate their particular well.

The Samburu are nomadic pastoralists and follow patterns of rainfall, seeking out lush pastures and water for their cattle, camels, goats and sheep. Clad in a striking red cloth wrapped like a skirt and a white sash, the traditional dress of the Samburu tribe is embellished with vibrant beaded earrings, bracelets, anklets and necklaces. The colourful, decorative jewellery reveals and represents the status of the wearer.

A significant and essential part of their culture is the art of dancing. Men dance in a circle and jump high from a standing position, without the accompaniment of musical instruments, using merely their voices to complement their singing and dancing. They reside in a stunning, sparsely populated part of Kenya prolific with wildlife.

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