Gibb’s Farm has long been a part of the diverse communities and cultures around it. Some 95% of Gibb’s Farm 150 full-time employees come from the immediate community and many more receive part-time employment or are given opportunities to sell their crafts and wares at the farm. Two of the largest populations in the region include the Iraqw and Maasai peoples, whose artwork, history, stories, medicine, and ways of life are preserved through Gibb’s Farm cultural programs and throughout the farm and its cottages.


Indigenous Knowledge Classes - IK classes are held annually. The courses involve the staff re- discovering their individual past; and incorporating it to the present life. It involves the cross- cultural study where affirmative action is given the first priority. “In order to experience in ourselves and to share with the guests our sense of place; sense of purpose and sense of history we have to actively know and use such knowledge”.  The seasonal classes enable the Gibb’s Farm community to share their knowledge with each other and with the travelers, as in the photo on the right, were the Naturalist is translating the oral stories of a Tloma Village elder.  The elder, Mzee Daudi, is the care taker of the Farm’s Kitchen and English Herb Gardens

  1. The Indigenous Knowledge (IK) program on the farm is lead by Grosper Mollel, a Maasai native of Eluai, Tanzania, and Headmaster of Noonkodin Secondary School where he also facilitates the program (download Intercultural education in a Tanzanian secondary school.pdf.) For two years Gibb’s Farm has supported the IK curriculum development at his school. We have invested the cash award from the 2010 Educational Traveler Community Conference which recently recognised this effort to support this season’s workshops.

Indigenous Medicine – Osero Forest Clinic provides traditional medical services as complimentary to modern health care for local and traveling communities.  Three indigenous and western medicine healers employ the environment and integrated medicine within the community to ground the African Living Spa.  In addition to the Farm clinic integrated medical facility, a traditional medicine clinic was started and is supported by the Farm to support the local community and the employee dependents in the outer areas.

See the lengthy African Living Spa website.

Africa is a destination where outer experience and inner journey come together to serve both traveler and the world they travel. Imperceptibly woven into the location and local culture, The Living Spa® - Africa provides an intimate, authentic connection by facilitating a harmonious bridge between the traveler, the place, the people and surrounding natural habitat.  It makes for a deeply memorable experience.  It is an ultimate healing journey in nature, with nature, naturally.

Each of the world’s indigenous health systems and their environments offer incredible opportunities for alternative health solutions.  Healthfulness improves when the power of such systems and their environments are employed.  When fully connected to themselves, their surroundings, those around them, and the natural healing power of the elements, the Living Spa - Africa creates the context where travelers can naturally retune and reconnect.  In the photo on the right, healer Maruna prepares plant medicine for treatment.  Away from one’s normal daily life and immersed in the natural rhythms of a healthy, harmonious setting, the traveler fully experiences the natural elements that nurture life – water, earth, minerals, people, plants, animals and intangible spirit of place. Creating a deeply personal event, The Living Spa awakens us to develop new and very personal, healthier lifestyle solutions.  

The Living Spa invites you to connect fully with every aspect of Gibb’s Farm at one’s own pace and in one’s own way.  Treatments, excursions and healing journeys are available.  Based on the most successful models of integrative medical centers, the science of western medicine and wisdom of indigenous healing afford personal, effective, and unforgettable healing experience.      

Fine Art - SANAA Artist-in-Residency - Each year, Gibb’s Farm sponsors East African artists to live at the farm and develop their artwork in a studio space provided by the farm to create commissioned fine art for the Gibb’s Farm Collection. Travelers have opportunities to meet and learn from these artists, and can purchase their works.  Recently, former Gibb’s Farm guests helped several artists put on an exhibition in the United States.  One of the artists mentioned in the garden section of the paper is a Maasai woman, Riziki Kateya, whose magnificent botanical illustrations and watercolors helped earn her scholarship to study at the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew outside of London. In this way Gibb’s Farm assists artist reach their fine art potential and gradually move away from a livelihood dependent on tourist arts and crafts to one that is based on fine art.  Pictured right of the Sanaa Art Gallery posting in the Farmhouse were regular artist shows take place. It also acts as an extension to the Gift Shop to provide a proper venue in which to display and interpret commissioned art.

Naturalist and Resident Scholars- The team of 15 naturalists and guides engage travelers in cultural programs besides going on safaris and walks, including village & Karatu town tours, in which travelers have opportunities to better understand how the community lives.  Information and interpretation about local biology, geology, and culture is offered most evenings. Such talks are led by naturalists, traditional healers, or resident scholars.   The scholars are provided with a temporary residence from which to conduct personal research or writings from, and to share their knowledge with the travelers and staff. Evening short talks are presented by the resident or visiting Naturalist on various topics, such as geology, biology, comparative culture and traditional medicine (see photo right).


Cultural Preservation