Colombia celebrates colorful Black and White carnival

STORY: The celebration, a UNESCO Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, draws on the South American country's indigenous, Spanish and African traditions.

Despite its name, which invokes the ritual of wearing black and white clothing to symbolise unity and equality, the carnival combines vibrant colours and music to celebrate ethnic and cultural diversity.

Carnival-goer Patricia Vivero, who came with her family, said they were "enjoying this inclusive party, recognising our culture and our ancestors."

While Jamie Gomez told Reuters the carnival allowed the family to share in the happiness, saying they were there "to start a new year with joy, enthusiasm, and a lot of hope."

On the Day of the Whites, artists put together a six-hour parade featuring colourful outfits. On the Day of the Blacks, participants are encouraged to paint their faces black to commemorate the liberation of slaves.

One of its traditions involves carnival-goers teasing each other by throwing talcum powder and foam.