THE BALANGAY VOYAGE
Tracing the Migration of Our Forefathers
Early Filipinos were a people of the sea, living in coastal villages or near rivers. Boats were linked to many aspects of Filipino life: fishing, trade, warfare, piracy (trade-raiding for goods and slaves), travel, communication, and dwelling. These boats were called "Balangay".
WHAT IS A BALANGAY?
The Balanghai or Balangay or Butuan Boat is a plank boat adjoined by a carved-out plank edged through pins and dowels. It was first mentioned in the 16th Century in the Chronicles of Pigafetta, and is known as the oldest Pre-Hispanic watercraft found in the Philippines.
The first wooden watercraft excavated in Southeast Asia, the Balangay is only found in the Philippines where a flotilla of such prehistoric wooden boat exists throughout the world. Nine specimens were discovered in 1976 in Butuan City, Agusan Del Norte, Mindanao and 3 of which have been excavated. Examination and extensive investigation reveals that the extant boats found in the excavation site date back to 320, 990 and 1250 AD