Travel Diary 2016: Province of Maguindanao

Why via Maguindanao? We wanted to get to Dipolog City at a shortest possible time. But more than that, I want to explore even along the main thoroughfare of the Province of Maguindanao. 
Maguindanao is part of ARMM (Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao). And in the past years it has been pictured as the place of the Maguindanao Massacre and Mamasapano Clash. At times being the one in-charge with checking if we are on track with the route we are taking, fear creeps in, but then the thrist for an adventure erases it and makes me want to see more of what Maguindanao can offer.
We reached the Municipality of Shariff Aguak around 5:30 A.M.. Shariff Aguak formerly Maganoy and the legislative capital of Maguindanao. As we passed by, the people were just starting up their day. In the poblacion of Shariff Aguak, we passed by Maguindanao Capitol Building.

After more that 10 minutes, we entered the town of Datu Saudi-Ampatuan, were everything we see were paited in pink. I wanted to stop by the famous pink mosque, but then I find it too early, that we might disturb our the morning prayer.

Along the way we saw grandiose mosque and almost every second we would pass by one. Around 6:00 A.M. we reached Cotabato City, after about an hour, we were backed on the road. We passed by the town of Parang and Matanog, here we saw how abundant the mountains of Maguindanao. Spring waters, oozing out of the mountainsides and green cornfields on its rolling hillside.

People stopped by to take a picture of small waterfalls along the way.

Our Ate Nene and Miya sleeping at back of the car
There are parts of the roads that are under contruction, making our travel time longer than expected. But then, after more than 4 hours on the road in the Province of Maguindanao, it gives me a sense of wanting this piece of paradise a secret. Away from commercialism that might, at one point will destroy the beauty of the place.