They are located in the south of the Oromo Region, in the south-central province of Sidamo. Its most important city is Yabello. They also live in Kenya and Somalia.
The Borana are nomads and are mainly engaged in livestock farming. In their lands, water is a very scarce commodity, and to obtain it, they drill wells in the earth to which they descend forming human chains with which they extract the water. When they carry out this task, they sing and form the so-called “singing wells” that constitute an interesting tourist attraction. Many of their traditions are passed from one generation to another through songs and music is fundamental in the education of children.
Near the city of Yabello is the crater of an ancient volcano El Sod, which is home to a small black water lake where the Borana descend to collect their salt.
One emblematic value of the Borana is the concept of Paz Borana or Nagya Borana; There must always be harmony among the Borana regardless of whether there is conflict between some of them and other peoples.
The Borana population is grouped into payments, groupings of households ranging from eight to forty. Each household has a male head of the family and each payment in turn has a man who is responsible for all the households.
Socially they are organized into gada or age groups. Every man belongs all his life to an age group. This group goes through different stages in which they acquire social qualities, these stages last 8 years and end at 40 years of age. There is a priest who does not belong to the gada system and is in charge of the passage rituals in the different stages.
90% are Muslim and 8% Christian. They perform circumcision and clitoroidectomy.