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Unique Tribes of The World - The Himba

The Himba people are an indigenous ethnic group residing in the Kunene region of northern Namibia, as well as in parts of southern Angola. They are one of the last remaining traditional pastoralist communities in Africa, and their unique way of life and distinctive appearance have attracted significant interest and curiosity from travelers and researchers alike. They lead a traditional way of life centered around cattle herding and subsistence farming, primarily growing crops like millet and corn.

Picture source: The Himba Ondjongo Dance of Happiness • Nomadic by Nature (

One of the most striking features of the Himba people is their distinctive appearance, characterized by their ochre-colored skin and intricate hairstyles. The red color comes from a paste made of ochre, butterfat, and herbs, which they apply to their skin and hair as a form of protection from the harsh sun and as a beauty tradition. The traditional clothing of the Himba consists of goatskin skirts for women and loincloths for men. They often adorn themselves with jewelry made from metal and beads, symbolizing their social and marital status.

The Himba live in extended family groups, and their social structure is built around kinship ties. The village is led by an elder, and decisions are made through consensus within the community. The Himba follow animistic beliefs, worshiping their ancestors and natural spirits. Rituals, ceremonies, and offerings play a significant role in their spiritual practices. They speak OtjiHimba, a dialect of the Herero language. It is an essential element of their cultural identity and heritage.

At TWELF-X we celebrate culture and experiences. We salute the Himba people for maintaining their cultural identity and ancestral traditions despite the pressures of the changing world. They continue to cherish their heritage, passing down their knowledge, customs, and rituals to future generations. At TWELF-X, we would love to experience their lifestyle and beliefs. We believe that we should keep an open mind to experience what the Himba community has to show to the world.