Explore indigenous Maasai and Hadzabe wisdom in Tanzania
8 days, 7 nights
About the experience
Join us on a life-changing eight days journey to participate and observe Maasai and Hadzabe ancient wisdom and follow their ancestors' traditional journey, reconnect with nature and expand consciousness for environmental healing. There are certain places in the world with undeniable energy, the power to stir our emotions, inspire reflection, or fill us with a sense of peace, and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area is one of these places.
Space is limited for this precious opportunity to learn from and interact with Maasai laibon, the traditional Maasai leader and medicine man inside the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. The Maasai have adopted a revitalized approach to preserve their culture in modern times. Their way of life is deeply rooted in traditions that have been practiced in the same way for hundreds of years. This stay is a great privilege to learn from the Maasai and from the earth they have a close relationship to. The aim of this ethnographic expedition is to address the need for balance and harmony between people and the environment and to share collective Maasai wisdom.
This amazing journey takes you back to the ancient wisdom and traditions of the Maasai where you will learn about ecological knowledge, plant medicine, ancestral knowledge and much more. You stay and sleep in a tent in the Maasai warriors bush camp and in a Maasai boma.
After staying with the Maasai we continue our journey with the Hadzabe hunter-gatherers. The hadzabe grow no food, raise no livestock, and live without rules or calendars. Their way of life has remained unchanged over the millennia and they live in small wandering groups of about twenty individuals. We join one of these family units in the deep bush. The Hadzabe are the heirs of the very first human beings, the kids of Olduvai Gorge and Koobi Fora who still have a symbiotic relationship with the environment, the purest example of an anarchic society with no rules, and no chief. We set up our bush camp near Hadzabes' huts.
The Hadzabe live from nature and their spirituality is not a religion but rather an integral part of their culture. We have the privilege to learn more about their relationship with the natural world.
We facilitate this expedition with David Metcalf and Anniina Sandberg. David is a professional photographer and film producer based in Bali. He has traveled into indigenous communities on a regular basis for the past seven years and supports a number of cultural and environmental programs. He was the co-founder of the first international indigenous film festival in Bali in 2018. He has dedicated his life to helping preserve and support the wisdom and beauty of indigenous wisdom.
Anniina is the founder of the Visit Natives. She has an MA in African studies from the University of Helsinki. Her expertise is intercultural communication, indigenous cultures, and ethnography. She has conducted research and lived among the Maasai for 9 months. She is also a Swahili interpreter and speaks fluent Maa- language. Anniina works with the Maasai and the Hadzabe people in Tanzania.
DAY 1. Arusha
Arrive at Kilimanjaro airport. We pick you up and transfer to our 4-star safari lodge in Arusha. Arusha is a vibrant African city and a safari gateway situated at the foot of Mount Meru, Africa's 5th highest mountain. Dinner together in a local African restaurant. Overnight at a lodge. (D).
DAY 2. Mto Wa Mbu
After breakfast, we head to Mto Wa Mbu village that is our first destination, which is about 2 hours drive from Arusha. The name Mto Wa Mbu means "River of Mosquitoes". From this village, we drive into the bush where we set up a camp inside a Maasai "boma". Maasai live in bomas which are kind of extended families numbering about 4-10 families normally. From our Maasai boma, you can see the Great Eastern Rift Valley and most probably we can see some zebras, antelopes, etc. The Maasai have built their indigenous wisdom around pastoralism, and cows are the link between them and their god, Engai. We meet the Maasai warriors at their bush camp where we learn more about traditional Maasai knowledge and their unique age-set system. Enjoy your first bush dinner under the African sky full of stars. (B, L, D).
DAY 3. Ngorongoro Conservation Area
After the bush breakfast, we transfer to Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Ngorongoro Conservation Area is the world’s largest intact caldera from a long-extinct volcano. It is also UNESCO's World Heritage Site. Ngorongoro is home to about 26 000 wild creatures who live within the safety of the caldera walls. The Maasai are the indigenous peoples whose traditional lands are Ngorongoro including the Ngorongoro Crater where they still herd their cattle in balance with wild animals. We have a great privilege to meet the Maasai's spiritual leader and medicine man, laiboni. Laiboni tells us about Maasai's wisdom. We learn how Maasai use bush medication and traditional healing. We set up a camp in a Maasai village in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Dinner and overnight in a Maasai village. (B, L, D).
DAY 4. Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Today we climb one of the special mountains of the Maasai in Ngorongoro. In the morning we attend the ritual preparations that are completed at the mountain before our 3-4 hour climbing together with the Maasai. We will have magnificent views from the top. We learn about rich Maasai rituals, rites of passages, and ceremonies. We return to sleep in our bush camp in Ngorongoro. (B, L, D).
DAY 5. With the Hadzabe
After breakfast, we head to Lake Eyasi and we drive to a remote location where are no roads. Here live the Hadzabe hunter-gatherers. For thousands of years, the Hadzabe hunter-gatherers have lived in Lake Eyasi. They are some of the last remaining hunter-gatherers on the Earth. We go deep into the bush and set up a bush camp next to the Hadzabe's huts. On these two days, we join the Hadzabe on their hunting trips, learn their hunting techniques, and see how they gather wild honey. In the evenings, the Hadzabe sing and tell stories at slow-burning Acasia fire. (B, L, D).
DAY 6. With the Hadzabe
The Hadzabe live only in the Lake Eyasi region of Tanzania. There are estimated to be around 1,300 Hadzabe people living in Tanzania. They are living a hunter-gatherer existence that is little changed from 10,000 years ago. The Hadzabe men hunt animals using three different kinds of bows and arrows. As well as wild meat, the Hadzabe women gather roots and tubers using digging sticks, and men collect natural wild honey found in trees. Here we create memories that are hardly forgotten. (B, L, D).
DAY 7. Lake Eyasi
Today we head to Lake Eyasi. Lake Eyasi is a seasonal shallow salt lake on the floor of the Great Rift Valley at the base of the Serengeti Plateau. We stay overnight in the Lake Eyasi Safari Lodge, which is located on a gentle slope with stunning views over the seasonal soda lake and up to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. After many days in the bush, you can have a fresh shower and you can relax by the pool or read a book on your veranda. Full-board in a lodge. (B, L, D).
DAY 8. ARUSHA
After breakfast, we transfer back to Kilimanjaro airport. (B).