In December 2008 we went down Omo river from Gibe Bridge to Mui junction. It was 10 day paddling...

Konso Karo

Konso Region
 Konso is located 90 km from Arbaminch with isolated region of the basalt hills. The Konso tribe make the most of the hard, rocky slopes that characterize their relatively dry and infertile homeland. You can visit the old village of Mecheke which is an excellent example of a traditional Konso village. You can see over 800 years of history when you see the wagas, memorial statues to a dead man who has killed an enemy or an animal.

These ancient wooden carvings are arranged in groups, representing the man, his wives, and his vanquished adversaries. Unfortunately the majority of these significant pieces have been stolen or sold to high-end antiques galleries in Europe and America. The Konso people are a reasonably rich tribe, as they have a vast number of terrace fields in the hills. The villages are relatively large and ruled by the elders of the region. Yazai is the charismatic king of Konso, what an honour it is to meet this exceptional human being. The Konso had an fascinating tradition after having a fight with an other tribe. They would take the tibia bones of their dead rivals and during a huge celebration would burn them to ashes.
Many years ago the women were all half nude with a typical white colourful skirt which can still be seen, but as missionaries are very active in the area, they tend to wear Arsenal tee-shirts to hide their breasts. There is in fact a challenge in Ethiopia between Christian and Muslim activists to convert the isolated villages.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) added in September 2011 the ‘Konso Cultural Landscape of Ethiopia’ to it's World Heritage List.

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