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Davao People:

Davao : PeopleDavao del Sur is an ethnic mix of Muslims, Visayans, Tagalogs, Chinese, Japanese and Spanish with a number of indigenous tribes scattered in the central plains and the western shores of the Davao Gulf. The city of Davao has a small population of 892,000 inhabitants spread across a vast 244,000-hectare land. Cebuano is the main language although English and Pilipino are widely spoken.

Ata people live in some areas of Davao City all the way to Davao del Norte and Bukidnon. They are related to the Manobos of Cotabato and include sub-groups such as the Talaingod of the Kapalong forests in Davao del Norte and the Matigsalug. Numbering about 222,000, Ata men wear long-sleeved shirts, carry spears, hunt, log and grow crops. Their womenfolk wear native blouses, "malong" skirts and accessories of brass bracelets and bead necklaces.Mandaya and Mansaka are culturally related groups who are highly musical - playing the five string bamboo guitar, two-string lute, violin, flute, gong, drum and bamboo jew's harp. They are also excellent silversmiths crafting breastplates, jewellery, daggers and knives. The Mandayas are famous for their colorful abaca fiber weaves embroidered with tribal motifs.

In both groups, women generally wear handwoven abaca tube skirts, embroidered blue cotton tops and heavy jewellery. Men sport wide blue or white fringed and embroidered trousers and a loose shirt. Red is a color only for a headman ("bagani") and for women of high status.

Bagobos live in an area that extends from Davao del Sur and South Cotabato to the foot of Mt. Apo and Davao City all the way to the land bordered by the Davao and Pulangi rivers and up to northern Cotobato and southeast Bukidnon. Numbering about 80,000, their traditional costume is woven from abaca fiber and heavily ornamented with beads, shells, metal discs, embroidery and brightly-colored geometric applique. Though Bagobos have the most stunning costumes among the Davao ethnic groups, they wear them only on special occasions. Like the Mandayas and Mansakas, they shave their eyebrows to a thin line and file and blacken their teeth. Bagobo smiths cast little bells which are attached to pouches, bracelets, jackets, anklets and inlaid metal boxes.

Tagacaolos number about 23,000 and occupy the area between the western shores of the gulf and the slopes of Mt. Apo. This is one of the tribes which resisted Muslim conversion and maintained a highland animistic culture.

Kalagans are a Muslim group related to the Tagacaolos. Numbering only about 7,000, they live along the shores of the Davao Gulf.

Mangguangans are now only 3,000. They can be found in Davao del Sur and Davao del Norte.


Travel Quotes:

We all become great explorers during our first few days in a new city, or a new love affair. Mignon McLaughlin

When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable. Clifton Fadiman

Philippine Cuisine Island Philippines

Dishes range from the very simple, like a meal of fried salted fish and rice, to the elaborate paellas and cocidos created for fiestas, of Spanish origin. Popular dishes include: lechón (whole roasted pig), longganisa (Philippine sausage), tapa (cured beef), torta (omelette), adobo (chicken and/or pork braised in garlic, vinegar, oil and soy sauce, or cooked until dry), kaldereta (meat in tomato sauce stew), mechado (larded beef in soy and tomato sauce). More details at Philippine Cuisine Island Philippines


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