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The Living Museum of the Mbunza

About 14 kilometres west of the Kavango capital Rundu you can find a place unlike any other: The Living Museum of the Mbunza, a traditional school for culture and at the same time a communal business for the local people of the Kavango. With this sustainable project they will be able to preserve their traditional culture and to generate an additional income.

The Living Museum at Lake SamsituThe Living Museum at Lake Samsitu

The old traditions of the Mbunza

As with all Living Museums in Namibia the main focus of the Mbunza Living Museum is to provide visitors to the museum with a detailed and authentic insight into the traditional, pre-colonial culture. The Living Museum, situated at the Samsitu Lake, is a traditional village of the Kavango, who have lived in this area for centuries. The village has been built entirely from natural material and the actors of the Museum carry clothes made from self- tanned, with Mangetti nut oil refined leather. The outfit actually had to be reconstructed from old photographs.

Traditional craftsmanship in the MuseumTraditional craftsmanship in the Museum

Fascinating Kavango culture

An essential part of the interactive program of the Living Museum is the demonstration (and preservation) of the fishing and land cultivating culture of the Mbunza. The traditional presentation covers everything from everyday life (traditional cuisine, fire making, basket and mat weaving, etc.) to bushwalks and fishing and finally to highly specialised techniques like blacksmithing, pottery and the making of drums.

The spoken language is Rukwangali, the most common language in the Kavango area. The guide translates into English. After having been convinced of the quality and the high standard of the Living Museum and after gaining an insight into the tradition, guests are able buy a small souvenir at the craft shop and to take a piece of Kavango culture home with them.

Map

Mbunza Map

Latest News

27 January 2023
Thanks to a very generous donation of €3,600 from Ms. Ute Schmidt-Rohr, we were able to successfully complete the first part of the water infrastructure project at the Mbunza Living Museum. A pump was installed at the Samsitu campsite very close to t...
18 November 2022
 This meeting was a "follow-up" to the previous meeting in March 2022 to assess the project progress in the development of a Herero Living Museum in Otjokavare. From our side, two things were essential. Firstly: Better communication structures m...
01 October 2022
In August 2022 we paid a visit to the Mafwe at the Living Museum in the northern part of Namibia to, among other things, install a new road sign. The erection of the sign had become necessary because the Mafwe had moved two years ago and some of the ...
19 September 2022
The first stage of the water infrastructure project for the Mbunza is, thanks to a very generous donation, in the starting blocks. The access to a supply of water is one of basic human needs. However, this need is not fulfilled in many parts of Namib...
03 September 2021
We have a new infrastructure project and ask for your support. This project is about supplying the Mbunza community with clean drinking water (step 1) and creating a sustainable source of income in the form of a small campsite for visitors to the Liv...
14 August 2021
We are happy to announce the pre-opening of the Living Museum of the Khwe. Supported by our project partners Gebeco and Futouris e.V. we have repeatedly organized workshops and project meetings with a group of Khwe-San from Mut’icu to develop a livin...