Tampangallo – Tana Toraja

Tampangallo Tana Toraja Title Pic-3

21st November 2010

Not far from Kambira Baby Graves, is the village of Tampangallo, between the villages of Sangalla and Suaya, and south of Rantepao. It is believed that the tau-tau {or effigies} in Tampangallo are one of the most stunning sights in Tana Toraja and one of the oldest grave caves. So, I just had to check it out!

The graves belong to the chiefs of Sangalla, descedents of the mythical divine – Tamborolangiq, who is believed to have descended from heaven on a stone staircase and introduced the caste system, death rituals and agricultural techniques to the Torajan society.

The deceased and their tau-tau are buried in a cave…I walked through the dark cave until I reached the other side where the cave opened up and the graves and tau-tau were visable. I was told the site is over 300 years old. A lot of the wooden coffins were so old that they had disintegrated, meaning that the skulls and bones of the deceased were scattered everywhere in the cave. There were loads of skulls lined up on the walls of the cave.

I think as it’s the oldest grave in the area, it also felt like the eeriest.

Tampangallo Pic Collage 1

Tampangallo tau2 pic colage

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