Festivals serve many purposes. They are known to bring people together and celebrate cultural and ethnic diversity. People celebrate for different reasons. While most celebrations are beautiful, some are a totally unique. One of the latter ones is the Baliem Valley Cultural Festival in Indonesia.
The festival has become a big tourist attraction now. It celebrated its 27th edition from August 8 to 10 this year, and The Daily Mail reports around 200 people from around the world came to watch.
The outfits worn by the people are some of the strangest ones you’ll ever see.
The women are dressed in ‘noken’, which are skirts made skirts made from woven orchid fibres decorated with straw and woven bags.
The men are in a tribal attire, complete with face paint and feathers. Plus they wear penis sheaths called Koteka, which can be used to distinguish the tribes. A long, thin Koteka is used by the Dani tribesmen; the Lani sport a medium-sized, wide cannon-like gourd, and the longest Koteka is worn by the Yali.
This festival is held at the Jayawijaya district of the Papua province in Indonesia. In August every year, the Dani tribe, which lives in the main valley, engage in mock wars with the neighbouring Lani and Yali tribes to celebrate the fertility and welfare of the tribal people.
After the battle though, the celebrations take a more usual route with some traditional dancing and folk music, and games like spear throwing and pig racing.
So tell us what do you think if this unique festival. Do you think there are other festivals anywhere else in the world that are as different as this one is?