The indigenous tribe of lowland Nepal – The Tharus

beautiful-tharu women-in traditional-dress&-ornaments

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 “The Tharus”, are the indigenous tribes living in inner Terai valleys and the Terai plains of Nepal.  They have been living in villages near jungles and the foothills of Chure Hills, which are isolated and undisturbed for centuries allowing them to develop a unique sense of culture and religion within the tribe.

The origin of Tharus varies from author to author, however the most convincing one goes this way. According the Buddhist literature “Laliy Bistar” and Jatak Tales” the birth of Buddha supports the fact that the Tharu are pre-Aryan race of Mongoloid origin, who have been living in the same area since the time of the Buddha. Tharus are believed to be the farmers since primitive age and have been continuing the same occupation till date.

Tharus have a very simple lifestyle and use everything available in the nature as their resource. They grow barley, wheat, maize, and rice, as well as raise animals such as chickens, ducks, pigs, and goats and in the big rivers; they use large nets to fish.

tharu fishing culture
Tharu Fishing Culture


They live in huts made out of wood and mud combined together to build strong support and the women decorate them with colorful paintings said to be dedicated to the Hindu goddess of wealth Laxmi.

Traditionally adorned Tharu house
Traditionally adorned Tharu house

Tharus speak variants of Urdu and Awadhi in western Nepal of Bhojpuri and near central Nepal, and Maithili in and near eastern Nepal.The Tharus are mostly Hindus, but many do follow Islam, Animist and Buddhist beliefs. Religious freedom is practiced in all tharu tribes, giving them the freedom to embrace their desired religion including Christianity.

Tharu women are considered to be naturally beautiful. They like to dress up very colorful, and flaunting their beauty with attractive silver ornaments is the part of their culture.

Tharu women are considered to be very skillful craftsmen and the knowledge has been passed down from mother to daughter since generations. Household furniture, clay Potts, chauki, dhokra, jhaal and kewar are made using the raw materials found in their surroundings itself. And the method has not changed since the primitive age.

Artistic creation from nothing- Creative Tharus
Artistic creation from nothing- Creative Tharus

In recent years, Tharus have been known for their hospitality, honesty and their generosity. The colorful culture of “The Tharus” attracts thousands of tourists annually to the Terai region and Tharus also play a vital role in the smooth running of the tourism activities as guides, and business owners.

We offer a wide variety of cultural and wildlife safaris in the Terai region of Nepal. Tharu culture and their lifestyle along with lush green forests with  biological diversity can be experienced at its best during the wildlife tours in the protected parks of lowland Nepal.

Traditional Tharu Dance
Traditional Tharu Dance


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