Nyami Nyami

Table of Contents

The Legend of the Nyami Nyami

Nyami Nyami, also known as the Zambezi River God, Snake Spirit, is one of the most important Tonga deities. His purpose is to protect the Tonga people and provide sustenance in difficult times.

Nyami Nyami is usually depicted as a male. There are various forms that Nyami Nyamii can take.

Depending on his preferred form, he may be male or female.


Nyami Nyamami, also known as the Zambezi River God or Snake Spirit, is one of the main Tonga gods. He is said to protect his people and provide sustenance in tough times. He is often portrayed as a male. His purpose is not entirely understood, but it is generally understood that he protects the people. His role in Tonga mythology is to protect the people and provide sustenance and protection from predators.

In the 1960’s, the BaTonga people lived on the banks of Lake Kariba. They believed that Nyaminyami would fulfill his promise to his wife. But he was separated from her by a dam across the river. The people of the area believe that Nyaminyami will destroy the dam one day. According to one theory, the snake may be a large species of catfish. In any case, the BaTonga people still believe that Nyaminyami will fulfill his promise to his wife.

Construction of the dam started in 1957, but it was temporarily stopped in 1958 due to a flood that is believed to be a thousand-year event. Then, in 1959, the rainy season started several months early, flooding the region. During the construction process, the Zambezi was finally completed, but it still had a lot of problems. To solve the problem, Tonga elders were called in to help. They explained that they would have to make sacrifices to appease the flood gods.

Zambezi River God

The mystical creature known as the Nyami Nyami is believed to reside in the Zambezi valley. A walking stick designed to honour the Nyami Nyami is a unique art piece with an impressive snake head at the top. The Tonga people worship this snake as their river god, and it is believed to turn the water red when it swims by. It is also believed that Nyami Nyami can change the colour of water through the Kariba Dam.

The Tonga people lived in the Gwemebe Valley along the Zambezi River for centuries. European colonialists disrupted the Tonga culture, but they were protected by the legendary Nyami Nyami. The Tonga worshipped Nyaminyami as their ancestral spirit, and in order to protect themselves, the Tonga would cut the meat of the snake and feed it to themselves. People also devoted their lives to the goddess through rituals and ceremonial dances. Nyami Nyamai always appeared to assist when the Tonga people summoned him.

The Tonga people believe in the existence of the mythical snake-like creature Nyami Nyamai. The snake-like serpent is said to be around three meters long but no one knows how long it is. He stains the water red and is believed to be a lost soul. The mythology surrounding the Nyami Nyami is incredibly rich. In fact, a Tonga chief has even seen the snake twice.

The Tonga have inhabited both sides of the Zambezi River for centuries. The Gwembe Trough, located from the Kariba Gorge upstream to Devil’s Gorge, was home to the Tonga people. However, their homeland was decimated in the 1950s when a dam was constructed at the mouth of the Zambezi River, which forced the Batonga to migrate elsewhere. The legend spawned a new species of Nyami Nyami.

The Zambezi River god, Nyami Nyami, is also known as the Zambezi Snake spirit. The Tonga people consider him to be the protector of their village and the source of their sustenance during hard times. The snake-like creature is often portrayed as a male. Many Tonga people wear pendants depicting him as a lucky charm. These pendants are made from bone, wood, or stone.

Tonga people also worship a mythical creature called Nyami Nyami. It is believed that he possesses supernatural powers that ensure food and water supplies. The Tonga people also believe in Nyami Nyami’s wife, who lives in the Kariba Gorge. Neither has been officially seen, but the legend surrounding these two is the most widely accepted. But, what about the Kariba River god?

The people of Tonga believed that the river god was returning. In the late 1940s, survey work for the wall of the Kariba Dam began. It was then discovered that 11 Italian builders had died during the floods. Their bodies were later found in the partially wet cement of the dam’s wall. The Chief Project Engineer calculated that leaving their bodies on the wall would not affect its structural soundness. The bodies of these 11 men are now part of the dam.

The rain ceremony is a tradition to thank the river god and was used when droughts were in the area. In times of drought, people would pray to this river god. They brewed opaque beer for seven days and spent the nights playing the drums and singing songs. The rain ceremony would be completed when clouds gathered in the sky, bringing rain. In some cultures, the rain ceremony is a religious celebration. It is not uncommon for a river god to receive water during this celebration.

Nyami Nyami FAQs

Is the nyami nyami real?

The Nyami Nyami, otherwise known as the Zambezi River God or Zambezi Snake Spirit, is one of the most important gods of the Tonga people. Nyami Nyami is believed to protect the Tonga people and give them sustenance in difficult times.

Who was nyaminyami wife?

The Tonga inhabited both banks of the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe and Zambia. But in the 1950s, life changed for them with the construction of the Kariba dam at the mouth of Kariba Gorge where Nyaminyami and his wife Kitapo are believed to have lived.

How long is nyaminyami snake?

Nyami Nyami The Zambezi River God

African mythology of the local Tonga tribe of the Zambezi Valley states that Nyami Nyami the River God who lives in Lake Kariba is believed to be a serpent-like creature. He is said to be about three metres wide, but nobody dares to guess at his length.

How does the nyami nyami look like?

Nyaminyami has apparently been seen on several occasions by local Tonga. He’s been described by some as looking “like a whirlwind”, others say that he had a “body like a snake with a head like a fish” but it was difficult to say how big he was as he’d never fully shown himself to anybody.

Who made the nyaminyami sculpture?

Driving along the Magunje-Binga route, one cannot miss a road sign with directions to David Mashapure’s homestead where his Broken Rock Arts base is located. It is at this base where he made and created many sculptures among them the famous Nyaminyami Zambezi River Spirit which stands majestically at Kariba dam.

Previous Post

Next Post

Book Now