Tuo Kayu Jao Mosque in Solok Regency, West Sumatra Province
While exploring Solok Regency, tourists may find an ancient mosque called Tuo Kayu Jao. Despite the old appearance, this mosque has become one of the best tourist sites in that region. The exact location is in Batang Barus Village and it belongs to Gunung Talak Sub-District. Here is the fact. Tuo Kayu Jao is the oldest mosque in Minangkabau. It is said the age is more than 400 years! Fortunately, it remains sturdy and offers a distinct beauty to visitors. Another unique fact is that the mosque is located under a valley!
Unlike regular mosques that reside in the city, Tuo Kayu Jao is located hidden under a valley. No wonder, it emits a secluded ambiance and distinct beauty. Usually, the locals often climb the hill and watch the mosque from above. The panorama and landscape are beautiful, too! Plus, the environment feels refreshing due to the presence of local plantations and farms. In terms of size, the mosque is considered small. It is made of woods and features palm fibers that cover the roof. Despite the age, the mosque looks sturdy and exotic!
Exploring Tuo Kayu Jao Mosque
The mosque looks secluded indeed. Yet, in fact, it has lots of visitors (both locals and outsiders). During holidays, for example, lots of visitors come from Medan, Jambi, Banten, Samarinda City, etc. Some foreigners are also seen! There must be many reasons, no? Most of these people want to see the unique mosque directly. They are intrigued by the architecture and history. Some tourists say they come to the mosque due to the location, which is under a valley. Thus, they are able to enjoy exploration as well as visit the mosque at the same time.
Located beside the mosque, tourists may see a small river. The current is weak, so it creates a soothing sound of gurgling water. As for the route, it is uneven and features lots of gravel. It won’t take much time to reach the mosque from the nearby village, though. Once arriving on the site, tourists would see the beautiful old mosque right away. The roof looks similar to a Gadang House’s. The shape of the mosque is rectangular and the walls feature stunning Minangkabau ornaments.
The mosque has 6 prime stanchions and 13 windows. In terms of condition, the interior looks neat and clean. Thanks to the locals. They work together in cleaning the mosque each month. In terms of function, the mosque indeed becomes a place for worshipping. Villagers also perform some religious ceremonies there. As for tourists, they must acquire permission before entering the mosque! Thus, it is recommended to talk to the locals first.
- Mount Talang
- Ayam Monument
How to Get There
First, it is recommended to go to Padang City (the capital of West Sumatra Province) by airplane. From Jakarta City, for example, a flight from Soekarno – Hatta International Airport to Minangkabau Airport may take around 1 hour and 40 minutes. From Padang, tourists should head to Solok Regency by taking Selayo – Padang Street. The distance is 80 km, so the trip may take about 2 hours and 15 minutes. Next, they may continue the trip by taking Raya Solok – Padang Street. The destination is Batang Barus Village and the distance is 32.8 km. That means this trip may spend around 55 minutes or less depending on the traffic.
Where to Stay
- Imelda Hotel
- Green Hotel