Peculiar cultures: Weird tribes around the world


In spite of the new world we live in today, some weird tribes around the globe still embrace and practice their peculiar cultures.

A lot of these tribes live a secluded life, they have no interest in the rest of the world, and that is probably how they manage to keep their centuries old traditions from extension.

Nonetheless, the rest of the world find such weird tribes so fascinating that it cannot leave them alone, and that is how we have learned about them.

So let’s take a look at some of the weird tribes that still practice their tribal lifestyle in the 21st century.

The Sentinelese

The Sentinelese

One of the few remaining uncontacted people in the world, The Sentinelese resist any form of contact with the outside world.

They can mentain their privacy as they have a whole island to themselves. They live in North Sentinel Island in the Andaman Islands of India.

All trials to establish contact with the locals ended up with them attacking the approaching vessels with arrows and spears.

The Indian government considers the Sentinelese a sovereign people, with the right to attack or even kill trespassers.

The Yali People

The Yali People

If you are interested in weird tribes, how about cannibal tribes?

A major tribal group in Papua, Indonesia who live to the east of the Baliem Valley in the Papuan highlands, the word Yali does not refer to the tribe or its cultural identity; it just means the people from the east.

A significant element that helped the Yali maintain their tribal lifestyle is that their lands are largely isolated by challenging geography. Their villages are only accessible by walking through rough terrains for several hours.

They had no contact whatsoever with the outside world till the 1960s and is still living in a somewhat of a sovereign region under the control of Indonesia.

Most people who have heard of Yali only heard that they are cannibals. However cannibalism was practiced as a way to scare other tribes. Yali are mostly vegetarians, they only eat pigs in celebration. But still in the old days they would attack their enemy tribes and take away prisoners. The prisoners would then be chopped and eaten in festivities. The bones of those prisoners would later be grinded and mixed with dust and thrown into the valley of the enemy tribe to terrify them.

The Surma People

The Surma People - Weird tribes

The Surma people live in Upper Omo Valley in Ethiopia. The Surma tribes comprises of the Suri tribe and the Mursi tribe. Looking at the way they choose to modify their bodies, they certainly qualify as weird tribes.

The Suri are very proud of their culture and traditions. When a boy comes of age, or when a man wants to take a bride they have to prove themselves by performing a martial art called saginé. It is basically stick fighting or ceremonial dueling.

When a girl becomes of marrying age on the other hand, they often get her lower teeth knocked out with a rock. Then they cut the lower lip with a razor and stretch the lip with a wooden plate. They keep replacing the plate for a bigger one until they reach the desired shape.

After a while the lip stretches so much they fit a clay plate around it. This is regarded as a form of beauty and status for Suri women, a girl’s dowry increases in tandem with the size of her lip.

The Chukchi People

The Chukchi People - Weird tribes

The Chukchi people are an indigenous people inhabiting the Chukchi Peninsula and the shores of the Chukchi Sea within the Russian Federation. They live in Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, where they largely maintain their traditional way of life.

Same as most ethnic groups that managed to save their way of life, the land of the Chukchi generally repels outsiders. Located at the tip of Siberia, the climate in Chukotka is very harsh, with winter temperatures sometimes dropping as low as–54° C, and summers average around 10° C. The territory is mostly treeless arctic plains.

The Chukchi people have been dubbed the ultimate survivors, because they have managed to survive the relentless efforts of the Soviet Union to extinguish them, with their culture intact.

The Yao People

The Yao People - Weird tribes

Wayao or Yao people are an ethnic and linguistic group based at the southern end of Lake Malawi. This group of about 2 million spread over three countries, Malawi, Mozambique, and Tanzania.

The name “WaYao” means “hill people” or those who come from the hills. The Yao are matrilineal, and most of their village societies are built around sorority groups. They call these sororities Mbumba.

As they do not believe much in western medicine, Yao villagers have a lot of knowledge of local medicinal herbs, and their designated healers travel far and wide to gather potent plants and ingredients to make their medicines.

To learn more about weird unusual nations see also:

Tribal lifestyle: the life of the Tuareg

Inca’s Civilization: Traditions, Aspects of life and Achievements of Ancient Incan People

Mayan achievements: Inventions and History of Maya civilization