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Longgang Mosque(龍岡清真寺)

Updated:2018-11-07

Posted Date:2016-01-04

Popularity:3210

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If you think Islamic culture is far beyond your reach, come to the Longgang area in Taoyuan and here you can explore the beauty of this exotic culture. Islam, paralleling with Buddhism and Christianity, is one of the three major religions in the world and it occupies one fifth of the religious population. There are seven mosques in Taiwan now and Longgang Mosque is one of the few historic mosques. The mosque’s entrance gatehouse, foyer, gender-segregated prayer hall all have displayed the characteristics of Muslim culture. Therefore, it is regarded as one of the major Muslim centers in the northern Taiwan.
 
The mosque is hidden near the Zhongzheng Market and within the multicultural Longgang area. This area inhabits military-dependent village residents formerly from Yunnan and Thai-Myanmar border. They retreated to Taiwan in the mid-1950s and many were Muslims who embraced Islamic religion. The idea of building a mosque began when they wished to have a permanent place for religious activities, and also because the Taipei Grand Mosque was too far for regular visits. With the assistance of the Chinese Muslim Association, they were able to raise funds and finally established the religious center of Islam─the mosque, in 1964. In 1989, the mosque underwent a reconstruction, resulting in the mosque in use today. Since then, it has become the Islamic religious center in Taoyuan, Hsinchu and Miaoli regions. 
 
Coming to the entrance and seeing the symbolic Muslim moon graphic at the gatehouse, you will know that you have reached the Longgang Mosque. The mosque occupies an area of 1,300 square meters and can hold 150 worshipers. Though there is very minimal decoration on the mosque, its choice of green (a symbol of freedom) as the primary color for the building fully depicts the characteristics of the peace-loving Muslims. The other features of the mosque include the imam office, staff office, reception room, chanting room, etc. The biggest prayer gatherings take place every Friday and men and women will go to their designated prayer halls to bow down and worship Allah. The mosque has become the best praying place for worshippers who are far away from home.
 
Due to its unique history and culture, the Longgang area is filled with an exotic cultural ambience and delicious cuisine. You can often see women dress in a hijab and men wear a taqiyah near the mosque. When you come to the Longgang area, the authentic Myanmar-Thai cuisine is something not to be missed. While taking a walk in the Zhongzheng Market, you will most often encounter the Yunnan rice noodle (migan) stores. Thai papaya salad, Yunnan steamed bun (puo su bao), Yunnan pastry pancake and many more hidden yet popular snacks are also waiting for you. If there is enough time, you can stroll along the market stalls and try out all kinds of amazing Yunnan-Myanmar pickles and sauces. Also, the rare galangal, water parsley, plantain flowers and other wild vegetables are displayed on the stalls to attract customers. Those who are interested in the ingredients can take them home and cook uniquely flavored dishes at home.

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