Taluksangay Floating Village and Mosque
Trip Start Jan 27, 2013
25Trip End Feb 01, 2013
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My next destination I was excited about was the Taluksangay Village about 20km outside of Zamboanga where there is a famous floating Mosque.
The tourist office told me it was safe to go outside the city and that I could take a jeepney from city hall to get there. I was to ask for the Councillor Nunio family when I got there who could show me around.
As usual finding the jeepney was the tricky part as there were many parked jeepneys around city hall. They kept pointing me to different jeepneys until I eventually found the right one.
They were waiting to fill up as local vendors came selling peanuts and other items thru the windows. I had already eaten a pineapple custard cake for 3P (.07 cents).
As usual everyone was curious what I was doing on this jeepney and I was getting lots of stares.
Eventually the jeepney filled up and left. It was a 35 min journey that cost 25P (.50 cents). As we kept driving on a one lane country road I wasnt sure where I was supposed to get off. I kept looking for road signs and eventually saw the domed red roof of the famous mosque so tapped a coin on the handlerail to get off here
Like a Warner Bros cartoon every man, woman, and child stuck their head out of the jeepney with elongated necks to see why this tourist got off and where he was going.
I was supposed to ask for the Nunio family but I could see the Mosque so carried on walking.
The Mosque can easily be seen on an inlet of land in an inner harbour. It is characterized by its red roof and two minarets. One is peculiarly taller than the other.
Heading in there was also a welcome gate to Taluksangay Village similar to Rio Hondo yesterday.
This was the main village street and was busy with passing bicycle rickshaws
I was continuing to get lots of stares and went into the Mosque. This is supposedly the first Mosque built on the mainland back in 1885 and had materials donated by the Ottoman Sultan in Istanbul. I'm surprised Islam came so late and become so strongly entrenched all across Mindanao.
The Mosque was of typical design with open doorways on all sides for the hot climate.
It wasnt prayer time yet so was mostly deserted except for a couple of locals keeping out of the heat
I'm not sure why the design has one shorter minaret but this is something I've not seen before in a Mosque
Continuing on into the village I followed the main street. One man who spoke english asked if I was Arab before heading into the local school. People were very curious but a bit more open then when I had visited Rio Hondo yesterday. I was smiling and saying 'salaam' and this time they were smiling back not in a total state of shock like yesterday.
I followed the path out to the seafront where there were floating wood homes as in Rio Hondo. Now the path ended to traffic and it was only open to foot traffic
The atmosphere changed and this was more of a village setting with no traffic. Many locals had their own long coloured fishing boats outside their houses.
School had let out and many children were following me and watching me. This was also arousing the attention of the locals who were watching this spectacle.
I smiled and said hello but wasnt sure what I was supposed to do. Should I buy them candies from one of the local vendors? If I did I would get swarmed creating more of a scene which might upset the locals more
Now the trail seemed to end and access was only on the wood platforms into the floating homes. A man started saying something to me in the local language.
I'm not sure what he said but all the locals came out of their houses and stood in their doorways looking at me or sticking heads out of windows.
This felt very uncomfortable now and didnt want to upset anyone so turned around and slowly started walking back the way I came putting my camera away.
I wasnt taking pictures of people or the children but when I tried taking one of a banana stall the lady became quite upset
It was a strange feeling again like yesterday at Rio Hondo but the tourist office had told me it was perfectly safe to come here. I guess they dont like strangers showing up, poking their noses around and taking pics, like they are some kind of curiousity.
I had been told to ask for the Nunio family so perhaps I should have done this in the beginning.
Then a villager in local dress who spoke perfect english asked where I was from. I told her I was from Pakistan for simplicity sake and she was curious what language we spoke.
Heading back I could see the waiting jeepney I had arrived on.
A lady came over and was trying to sell me a bag of some vegetables which I didnt need. I indicated I needed a drink so a small boy was going to show me where but then the jeepney came by so I hopped on as by this time I was causing too much disturbance everywhere.
Taluksangay is an interesting village similar to Rio Hondo. This time they were on clear ocean waters so I'm curious how badly they are damaged during storms and typhoon season.
It was sad to see some children as young as maybe five were working naked in the muds collecting things.
Overall it was safe but I was attracting too much attention. Perhaps it would have been better to ask for the local guide I was advised by the tourist office.
Here is the original article I used as a guide to visit Taluksangay Village
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