By Ashley Anderson, Saruni Marketing
Many know Kenya as a famous safari destination but the country is also steeped in diverse and fascinating cultures and traditions, often untainted by the modern world. The semi-nomadic pastoralists living in Northern Kenya are a particularly fine example of this.
A short drive away from Saruni Rhino, one of the most extraordinary traditions can be witnessed. During dry spells, ‘The Singing Wells’, known locally as ‘Kisima Hamsini’ (Fifty Wells) are visited daily by semi-nomadic pastoralists and their herds. Water is scarce in Samburu for most of the year, but thankfully these wells run deep. During the dry season, Samburu herdsmen, festooned with beaded necklaces and bracelets, take their herds to the Singing Wells, where they dig down searching for water for their precious cows, goats and camels. While doing so, they sing a distinctive melodious song soothing their livestock and driving them to ancient hollowed-out logs to drink their fill.
There is nothing quite like it. As no photography or filming is allowed, you simply watch in awe as the warriors share stories, catch up and water their cattle. The rising dust, melodic chants and chiming cowbells create the most extraordinary atmosphere that is often described as biblical. The event is not arranged, nor is it put on for tourists; it has been happening unchanged for thousands of years.
Special permission was given to Saruni to take photographs and videos of the spectacle. View the exclusive gallery HERE
Watch ‘The Singing Wells’ VIDEO CLIP by Sergey Zamkovy for Saruni
The Samburu are known for their close relationship with the wildlife they share the land with. During the dry months, the wells become a vital oasis for all sorts of different wildlife too. If you are lucky, you will witness a herd of elephants carefully lowering their trunks into the deep wells at dusk.