Mesmerizing Traditions of the Black-Faced Tribe: A Glimpse into Their World

Buckle up, adventure seekers! Papua New Guinea’s rugged terrain holds a hidden gem that will leave you awestruck. Nestled deep in the Highlands of Enga Province, lies the enigmatic, Black-faced tribe. This remote tribe is a rare breed, unique to the region and is like nothing you’ve ever seen before.

Their name, Suli Muli, may have an unknown origin, but their cultural traditions speak volumes. With a single language and centuries-old heritage, this tribe is shrouded in mystery, with a distinct physical appearance that has earned them their moniker.

The name “Suli Muli” is believed to have originated from a song sung by a local singer from Madang Province. During one of their trips to a festival in Hagen, the Black-faced tribe’s women sang the song, and passersby began calling them “The Suli Muli.” The name was eventually adopted as a unique and fitting representation of the Engan people, who have lived in the region for centuries with a distinctive language and culture.

The most striking feature of the Black-faced tribe is the mesmerizing black face paint they apply during traditional ceremonies. The intricate patterns and designs are made from a blend of charcoal and natural oils, creating a camouflage effect. But this is not just any ordinary paint. It is a window into their ancient customs, believed to have been used for hunting and warfare. Imagine catching a glimpse of these magnificent beings, their faces adorned with striking designs, as they prepare for their annual Suli Muli festival.

The Suli Muli festival is a vibrant celebration that brings the entire tribe together. It is a time to showcase their unique culture and customs, and to honor their ancestors. The festival is an explosion of color, with the Black-faced tribe donning their signature face paint and traditional attire, dancing and singing to the beat of the drums. As a visitor, you’ll be swept up in the energy of the celebration, immersing yourself in a world that is truly one-of-a-kind.

Exploring the region, you’ll discover a land of lush greenery, pristine rivers, and awe-inspiring mountain ranges. But the true treasure of this land is the Black-faced tribe and their captivating traditions. Their customs are steeped in a rich history that has been passed down from generation to generation, and it is a privilege to witness these traditions and practices in action.


Prepare to be mesmerized as you discover the captivating world of the Engan people – a tribe known for their striking physical features and rich cultural heritage. These magnificent beings have unique physical features that make them stand out from the crowd. Their faces are adorned with all-black striping, accentuated by white linings, creating a stunning visual effect. In the past, men and women also wore nose and ear rings, while dotdot tattoes adorned their nose, forehead, cheeks, chin, and lower lip. These tattoos are often accompanied by intricate headdresses and body adornments made from shells, feathers, and bones.

The Black-faced tribe’s culture is steeped in music, dance, and storytelling that has been passed down from generation to generation. Their war dances are legendary, with fierce warriors wielding spears and shields, performing to intimidate their enemies and to demonstrate their strength and unity. The Engan people also have a rich tradition of storytelling, reflecting their unique worldview, and offering insights into their spiritual beliefs and cultural practices.

While the Black-faced tribe is famous for their culture and traditions, they are primarily subsistence farmers. Their fertile lands in the Enga Province are home to a variety of crops, including sweet potato, English potatoes, taro, sugar cane, bananas of all types, and a wide range of vegetables. The Engan people take great pride in their farming techniques, which have been passed down for centuries, ensuring that their land continues to provide for them and their families.

It’s not just the culture and traditions that make the Black-faced tribe special; it’s the way they embody the spirit of the Enga Province. From their striking physical appearance to their passion for farming, the Black-faced tribe truly embodies the essence of this region. The pride of Enga Province, the Black-faced tribe, showcases a way of life that is in harmony with the land, with their customs and beliefs offering a glimpse into a world that is as beautiful as it is unique.

As you explore this rugged terrain, you’ll feel the energy of this vibrant community, with their music, dance, and storytelling taking you on a journey into their world. The Black-faced tribe is more than just a tribe; they are a window into a land of mystery and wonder. A land that is waiting to be discovered by those willing to take the plunge and immerse themselves in a world that is truly unlike any other.


Welcome to an exciting 3-week trip to the highlands of Papua New Guinea! The trip begins with a warm welcome by Miss Lydia, who will help you purchase the necessary food and utilities for your trip to Enga Province. You will transfer through two provinces to reach the Village of the Black-Faced Tribe, where you will stay overnight at a local house or bungalow. Days 4 to 7 will be spent in Enga Province, where you will have many opportunities to interact with the Enga Tribes, also known as the Black Faced Tribe. You will engage in local activities and walks and learn about their unique culture and traditions.

After your stay in Enga Province, you will travel to Mt. Hagen and visit the Huli Wigmen, continue to Jiwaka Province, and witness their famous Forest Skull Kids and many other tribes. The tour continues with visits to other tribes such as the Jiwaka and Bogo Cultural Village, and you will learn about their unique customs, practices, and way of life. Get ready for a unique adventure and to explore the rich culture and traditions of Papua New Guinea!


Next, he Asaro mudmen and Skeleton tribe are two fascinating indigenous groups from Papua New Guinea. The Asaro mudmen are known for their distinct masks and body paint made from mud, while the Skeleton tribe is known for their intricate body decorations made from bones and shells. Both tribes have rich cultural traditions and are a testament to the diversity and uniqueness of human societies around the world.