21 Unknown Tribes That Live In The World’s Most Remote Places

The whole point of traveling is to explore whole new worlds and cultures completely different from your own. If you’re that kind of traveler who loves learning from new cultures while at the same time exploring nature’s most extreme corners, then this article is for you! Here are the world’s most amazing tribes you never knew existed, and all of them have one thing in common: they live in some of the world’s most unexplored places.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

#21. Huli Wigmen, Papua New Guinea

The Huli Wigmen are an indigenous people native to the Hela Province of Papua New Guinea. With a population of nearly 250,000, they are one of the country’s most numerous and popular tribes.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Wanna hear a few fun facts about the Huli? They’re the only Papuan tribe that doesn’t have a chief, they love to party, and they use pigs as currency! You should know that many companies offer tours to some Huli communities, you should look into it!

#20. Puama’u Village, French Polynesia

This striking picture was taken in Hiva Oa, one of the most touristic islands of Marquesas Islands, an archipelago located in French Polynesia. Not only is Hiva Oa famous for its lush green forests and turquoise beaches, but also because of its rich culture.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The biggest human settlement in Hiva Oa is the Puama’u village, home to nearly 2,500 people. The local tribe speaks the southern Marquesan language and they’re famous for their special type of clothing, mainly made up of different sorts of plants. And guess what? These people can be found in some of the impressionist paintings of Paul Gauguin, who visited the island in the late 19th century.

#19. Samburu Tribe, Kenya

Kenya is home to 44 recognized tribes and the Samburu is one of the most famous ones. Most of their people live near the Nile Valley, and these territories are also home to several famous game parks, including the Samburu National Reserve. This means that most of the Samburu communities live amid lions, elephants, giraffes, and many other wild animals!

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Samburu are nomadic people who raise livestock, mainly sheep, cattle, and camels. They are also one of the few gerontocratic tribes of Kenya, which means that the elder people are the ones who rule! Can you guess where else the Samburu people live in? Then slide to #6!

#18. Mapuche People, Argentina

The Mapuche are one of the biggest tribes of Argentina and Chile and they mostly live in the Patagonian region. They have a rich history and are most famous for their unique beliefs, traditions, and food. Most of the Mapuche communities lie surrounded by the towering snow-capped Andes mountains, so visiting them is something you won’t regret.

Photo: Courtesy of Fondation Paul K. Feyerabend

If you ever visit Patagonia, you should try one of the Mapuches’ most famous food, merkén. It’s actually a spice rather than a food, made out of dried and smoked hot pepper and ground with cilantro seeds. For a traditional Mapuche dish, you should try curanto, a sort of barbecue that they make underneath the earth!

#17. Tibetan Tribes, Bhutan

This picture was taken in the Himalayan mountain range in Bhutan, and these belong to one of the few Tibetan tribes who live in the country. While there are nearly 6 million Tibetans in the world, only a few thousands live in Bhutan.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The reason they’re dressed in such vibrant colors is that the Tshechu festival is being held. Tshechu is the country’s most important religious festival and it’s most famous for its costumed, masked dances.

#16. Maori People, New Zealand

This picture was taken in the Haruru Falls, a small yet wide waterfall located in North Island, New Zealand. Not only is it a beautiful place to visit, but it is also home to a Maori community. Whether you’re a nature or a culture lover, this site is a must!

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Maori people arrived in New Zealand around the 13th century and they developed their own language, mythology, crafts, and arts. They’re most famous for the Haka dance, which is usually performed by New Zealand’s national rugby team, the All Blacks.

#15. Uramana Clan, Papua New Guinea

The Uramana Clan is a small indigenous community native from Tufi, a small town in Papua New Guinea. While most people from Tufi are Anglicans, the area is also home to several small native tribes, not just the Uramana.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Tufi and its surroundings are famous for its river valleys and reefs. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the Uramanas are famous fishers and talented canoe builders. If you feel like visiting this site, then head to the Tufi Dive Resort!

#14. Ni Vanuatu People, Vanuatu

With a population of nearly 270,000, the Ni Vanuatu is one of the main tribes from Vanuatu, a small country an island in Oceania. Most Ni Vanuatu villages have their own clubhouse, where people gather to drink kava, the local alcoholic beverage.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Another interesting feature about most Ni Vanuatu villages is that they’re divided into male and female-only areas. You can visit some of these communities, and you should know that some of them are located near some of the world’s most breathtaking beaches!

#13. Ladakhi Tribe, India

The Ladakhi tribe is made up of nearly 60,000 people and they inhabit the Indian states of Kashmir and Jammu. Some Ladakhi communities live near the Indus River Valley, while some others live in the Himalayan region of northern India.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Ladakhi women are famous for those headdresses known as perakswhich is why they’re usually referred to as the Perak Women. During winter, Ladakhi women are responsible for building Buddhist shrines – called stupas – out of ice.

#12. Naga Babas, India

The Naga Babas are not technically a tribe, but an important religious group in India. Naga Babas are monks who follow the Hindu god Shiva, and they’re most famous for the fact that they cover their bodies in ashes and white paint.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Naga Babas practice celibacy and they mostly live in the Himalayas. Did you know that their name literally translates to “Naked Yoghi”? They actually can’t wear any clothes, and it comes as a shock that they manage to survive naked under the freezing Himalayan temperatures!

#11. Likekaipia Tribe, Papua New Guinea

You’re probably surprised by the number of tribes from Papua New Guinea that appeared on this list so far. Well, you should know that this country is home to 312 tribes that speak over 800 different languages.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

These men belong to the Likekaipia Tribe, and the picture was taken in Ponowi, a small village located amid the Jalibu mountains in Papua New Guinea’s Western Highlands. Here’s a tip: you can go trekking in this region and visit a Likekaipia community on the way!

#10. Miao Tribe, China

The Miao is one of China’s most famous ethnic groups and they mostly live in the mountainous and scenic Gui Zhou province. Miao women are famous for those unusual longhorn headdresses which are made out of wool, linen, and the hair of their female ancestors.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

If you’re interested in some cultural tourism, you should visit the Xinjang Village, also known as the “thousand-household village”, which is the biggest Miao settlement in the world. Surrounded by green mountains and bordered by paddy fields, it’s one of the most picturesque sites you’ll ever find.

#9. Aymara People, Bolivia

The Aymaras live in the South American countries of Bolivia, Peru, and Chile, and their culture is regarded as a precursor to the Inca culture. If the name rings a bell, it’s probably because this is the tribe to which the Bolivian President Evo Morales belongs.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Aymaras live in the Andes mountain range and many of these communities have climbed peaks of over 6,000 meters way before the Europeans did. Just like the Incas, the Aymaras created many mountain terraces on very steep slopes, many of which are definitely worth visiting.

#8. Kheng – Bhutan

Did you know that indigenous tribes make up nearly 15% of Bhutan’s population? One of the biggest of these tribes is the Kheng, who live in the Himalayan mountains.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Like most people in Bhutan, the Keng practice Tibetan Buddhism, although they are famous around the world for their detailed animal masks, which they use in different dances and rituals. Those deer masks are truly amazing!

#7. Bayan-Ölgii People, Mongolia

Several centuries ago, Mongolia was home to nearly 37 tribes, but the famous ruler Genghis Khan united all of them at the time he established the Mongol Empire. Many of these tribesmen live in the Bayan-Ölgii Province, famous for its mountains and arid deserts.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The native people of this region are nomads and their lifestyle hasn’t changed much during the past two thousand years. In fact, they still use eagles to catch their prey, a millenary practice that never grows old.

#6. Samburu Tribe, Kenya

The Samburu is one of the most iconic African tribes, and that’s why we thought they deserved to appear twice on this list. But there’s a reason behind our choice: not only do they live in different areas of Kenya, but there are also many cultural differences between the various Samburu communities.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This Samburu community lives in the Ndoto Mountain Range, one of Kenya’s most picturesque sites. They raise camels and weave baskets, but are most famous for the animal skins and rectangular woven materials they use for clothing.

#5. Hakahau Village, French Polynesia

As we’ve seen on #20, the Marquesas Islands are a group of small volcanic islands located in French Polynesia, famous both for its paradisiac beaches as well as its lush green mountains. This amazing picture was taken in one of the archipelago’s smallest islands, Ua Pou.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The biggest human settlement in Ua Pou Island is the Hakahau Village. This small hamlet is inhabited by Polynesian natives, who first settled on the island somewhere near AD 300. Legend has it that this tribe practiced cannibalism back in the old days, but luckily they don’t any longer!

#4. Angge Village, Nepal

This beautiful picture was taken in Angge, a small village in the isolated region of Upper Mustang, Nepal. Located in the middle of the Himalayas, Upper Mustang is home to ancient tribes who speak traditional Tibetan languages.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This is one of the very few regions in the world where Tibetan culture has been preserved and these people live mostly out of tourism. In fact, many companies in Kathmandu offer village tours that take you through some of the most remote ethnic tribes in the world’s highest mountain chain.

#3. Maasai Tribe, Kenya

The men shown in this picture belong to one of the world’s most famous tribes, the Maasai Mara. The Masaai live in southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania and they’re the largest tribe in Africa, with nearly 3 million people.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Maasai are famous for their unique customs: they stretch their earlobes, eat raw meat, drink animal blood, and wear woven red clothes. As to the picture, it was taken in one of Tanzania’s most visited parks, Tarangire National Park.

#2. Karo People, Ethiopia

This picture was taken in Omo Valley in southwest Ethiopia, a region that is home to seven tribes who coexist peacefully. As to the people who appear in the image, they belong to the Karo tribe.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Karos are most famous for their body and face painting. They usually paint their bodies with white chalk, charcoal, iron ore, and yellow mineral rock, and the designs range from stars to animal motifs. They live mostly out of flood retreat cultivation, and just like the Maasai, they drink animal blood.

#1. Zhuang Tribe, China

The Zhuang is one of China’s oldest tribes and they mostly live in the Guangxi region. This picture was taken near Guilin, a city home to one of China’s most beautiful landscapes and famous for the Longji rice terraces

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The Zhuang live out of fishing and they use cormorant birds to help them fish. Over the past few decades, the Guangxi region has become super touristic, but in spite of that, the native people still preserve their customs and traditions.

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    Hernán Tamargo

    Teacher. Political Scientist. Writer. Feminist... and much more!

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