Learn about indigenous peoples at this museum in the heart of the Amazon


The Amazon rainforest is the largest tropical rainforest in the world. It is an ancient forest that has persisted for millions of years and is teeming with diverse peoples and tribes. The Amazon is also home to the largest collection of uncontacted tribes – around 77-84 of these tribes live in Brazil and another 15 in the Peruvian Amazon. It is generally forbidden to attempt to contact uncontacted tribes who enjoy protection in most countries where they live.

According to Aqua Expeditions, there are around 400 tribes still living in the rainforest. Many of them live in villages by the rivers or as nomads deep in the jungle. These peoples are very diverse and you can learn more about them deep in the Amazon rainforest at Museu do Homem do Norte (Northern Man Museum).

The purpose of the Museu do Homem do Norte

“The Museum intends to give a vision of the regional cultural amplitude, showing the day-to-day working techniques of the Amazonian populations, the means of transport, housing, food, festivals, crafts, religiosity, myths and rites., in addition to an important archaeological collection.”

Museu do Homem do Norte

The Museu do Homem do Norte is located in the heart of the Amazon rainforest in the major Brazilian city of Manaus. In Manaus, in Centro Cultural dos Povos da Amazonia (Cultural Center of the Peoples of the Amazon), one can have an overview of cultures, myths, rites, daily life, tools, clothes, etc. of the different Amazonian peoples.

The museum focuses on the peculiarities of the life of the different peoples of the northern region of Brazil. You can see more than 2,000 exhibits and presents Cine Silvino Santos, in honor of the photographer and pioneer of cinema in the Amazon.

  • Exhibitions: Over 2,000 items
  • To concentrate: Northern Amazon

The museum was designed by sociologist and anthropologist Gilberto Freyre.

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What to expect at the museum

In the museum is a documentary explaining the daily life and various ceremonial rites of the Amazonian tribes. Fortunately, the documentary is broadcast in English and Portuguese.

  • Documentary: Shown in English and Portuguese

According to Altas Obscura, exhibits include depictions of communal housing in forest villages, traditional paintings, ritual clothing, carvings, and rubber and cassava processing methods.

One will see depictions of belief systems and cultures that may seem strange to Westerners – such as painted tree bark tunics worn by boys to recognize the onset of menstruation in their female peers.

The age of the internet and modernity is making cultures and worldviews across the globe increasingly similar. A millennial can be an Instagram millennial in just about any country today. It’s easy to forget how radically different worldviews and cultures were the norm in the not so distant past.

At the museum, visitors will also see the juxtaposition of modern objects like electric cable cars with traditional objects from the Amazon – like canoes.

Related: 25 Things Hidden Deep In The Amazon Rainforest That Nobody Knows About

Visit to the Museu do Homem do Norte (Northern Man Museum)

The museum is awkwardly located inside a large busy roundabout in the center of town. Entrance to the museum is free and there are guides who are also free (although a fluent English-speaking guide is not guaranteed).

  • Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Admission: FREE ENTRANCE
  • Address: Avenida Silves, 2222 – Industrial area, Manaus

It is worth visiting the Museu do Homem do Norte if you have the opportunity to visit. It is instructive to get a glimpse of a worldview so different from that of the modern world. The museum is highly rated with 4.6/5.0 stars on over a hundred reviews on Google.

If one wishes to explore the environment in which the Amazon peoples live, the best way is to take a cruise on the Amazon River. One can choose to cruise to a number of Amazon countries, including Brazil and Peru. The Amazon rainforest is one of the greatest natural wonders of the world and well worth visiting if given the chance. It is still home to some very unique ways of life.

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