Ovahimba Living Museum
The Ovahimba Living Museum is a place where you can interactively experience the traditional culture of the Ovahimba. The Museum acts as a traditional school for guests and for the children of the own community alike and at the same time it is an income generating institution.
The Museum is strategically located between the Ovahimba capital Opuwo and the paradisiac Epupa Falls at the Kunene River in the north of Namibia.
The traditional culture of the Ovahimba
The Museum consists of a large traditional homestead in which the Ovahimba introduce interested guests to their daily routines and encourage them to take part.
Important elements of the original tradition are the production of food, craftsmanship (forging, pottery, wood carving, leather tanning), the building of clay huts as well as singing and dancing. Guests get to know the homestead, the importance of the Holy Fire, some of the religious aspects and the importance of cattle within the Ovahimba culture. They are welcome to actively take part in all activities demonstrated.
Even “Ovahimba-Bodypainting” or a genuine traditional wedding Ovahimba way are possible.
Otjihimba is the spoken language of the Ovahimba, a dialect of the widespread Otjiherero language. The guide translates into English. Guests satisfied by the quality and standard of the museum offering an exemplary insight into the traditions of the Ovahimba traditions are able to purchase a small souvenir in the craftshop afterwards.
Traditional life in the village (2-3 hours )
Get an introduction into our culture. We demonstrate important parts of our traditions including daily life, food production, craftsmanship and singing and dancing. You will learn about our homestead, the holy fire, our religious beliefs and the importance of our livestock. You are welcome to join the activities!
Bushwalk (1 hour)
Follow our guide and some Ovahimba on a guided walk. We will show you some traditional weapons and the plants we use for medicine and food.
Craftsmanship Workshop (2 hours)
We introduce you to our special craftsmanship like pottery, wood carving and the work of the blacksmith. You will get the chance to work together with us and learn some skills from our masters.
Ovahimba Body Painting (1 hour)
Get dressed and painted Ovahimba style.
Singing and Dancing (1 hour)
We introduce you to our energetic dances. This activity can be done either in the Living Museum or in our cave close by. You are welcome to join!
Spend a Day with us (5 hours)
Get a detailed insight into our traditional culture. This program is a combination of programs 1-3.
Wedding ceremony (1 day)
On request. Pre booking essential. Get married Ovahimba style. You will get dressed as an Ovahimba and go through the stages of a traditional wedding. We will slaughter a sheep and a goat and have a celebration at the end of the day.