The main feature of Blacks and Whites' Carnival (Carnaval de Negros y Blancos) is that people paint and color each other with anything they get their hands on—paint, polish, grease, talcum, chalk, and flour. January 5th is the day of the blacks and January 6th is the day of the whites. The day of the blacks commemorates the time when African slaves were liberated.
Generally, the celebration in Pasto starts on December 28 with some fun pre-carnival events. On the first day people of all ages stroll along the streets and throw buckets of water at each other. It is followed by the “Serenade to Pasto” where local bands and singers play the guitar or other string instruments. January 2 marks the real start of the festival with impressive parades, which continue through January 7.
During the festival you can enjoy local music, unique ancient costumes, different performances by local, national, and international artists. Don't forget to buy a special protective mask "antifaz", which can be found in any shop.