Housing Above 100 Feet on Treetops – The Korowai Tribe background img
August 18, 2016

Housing Above 100 Feet on Treetops – The Korowai Tribe

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Korowai Tribe feature

Can you envisage existing over 100 feet high up in the trees? People of the Korowai Tribe can!

A group of people identified as the Korowai tribe need not stretch their thoughts at all since their lives have at all times been living in tree houses that ascend high above. On the isle of New Guinea in the southeastern part of Papua, a secluded tribe is a solitary group of people in the world who have set up their main dwelling in tree houses. These Papua New Guinea natives are tree dwellers, also known as the tree people.

cooking food Korowai Tribe


It is one of the oldest tribes of Papua and New Guinea. The Korowai tribe is the only one left of the cannibal tribes. Cannibalism to the Korowai Tribe is part of a custom vital to keep their members safe from a fiend known as the khakhua. In fact, the khakhua is a male witch, a being that masks itself as a best friend or even as a member of the family of its selected victim. As soon as the victim sleeps, the demon starts to consume his viscera and gradually kills that person. If the tribesman calls out a name while he breathes his last that means he is informing those who are left behind the name of the khakhua who consumed him. That person so named is now a demon. The khakhua is slain with a supernatural bone arrow, prepared from the bones of a huge local bird and engraved with profound barbs on both sides of the arrowhead. As soon as the khakhua is killed it is cooked and consumed.

house Korowai Tribe


With a total number of 3,000 people, the Korowai tribe lives in the forest of New Guinea. This tribe is the last definite group that practices cannibalism. But they say that it is not precisely cannibalism—it is just the custom of taking revenge and consuming the demon that has got into the skin of a human being as well as has eaten another human. The tribe has just recently started to allow outsiders near enough to peep into their customs and way of life.

Forest of New Guinea Korowai Tribe


The Korowai tree houses are bizarre. It’s an interesting way to live like this even though to us it looks as if it is a daredevil’s lifestyle, although the cause behind the lofty homes in the forest is in fact for safety measures. The region, which is prone to flood and inhabited with vibrant insects, shows to be a life-frightening and difficult land to live on at ground-level. Consequently, the tribe utilizes labor-concentrated measures to build each of their lofty wooden homes on top of the trees. Neither any cranes nor any load-bearing machines are there to help these men and women. The whole thing is done manually. Whatever little tools they use all resemble that of the Stone Age.

These tribal bless their new homes by smutting animal fat at the doorsill as well as stairs, and with that make little circles on the roof that representatively give admittance to delicious game animals. All members of the family together with their pets plus other domestic animals live in a single tree house. The bigger homes have separate living rooms for the men as well as women in the family, and separate fire trenches, and at times stairs.

Can you live like the people of the Korowai tribe?

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