Philippines
Province of Ifugao

Here you’ll find travel reports about Province of Ifugao. Discover travel destinations on the Philippines of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

21 travelers at this place:

  • Day66

    Hello Banaue!

    June 5 on the Philippines

    Day 1
    I took a let morning flight to Manila and arrived around 12:30. I had been advised by fellow travellers to avoid Manila and spend my time elsewhere in the Philippines so I booked a bus ticket for that afternoon to the north of Luzon island to Banaue, home to a UNESCO world heritage rice terrace (yes another one). My bus wasn’t until 8pm but I decided to just get a grab taxi (Asia’s version of Uber) to the bus station anyway and find somewhere nearby to wait (hopefully find WiFi and food). My first impression of Manila during that taxi ride was it is BUSY! So many people and cars everywhere! When i got to the “bus station”, aka parking lot in random suburb (all bus companies have their own bus depots so there’s not just one main bus station in the city) I picked up my ticket and asked if there was anywhere I could wait. I was then given directions to a nearby mall. That first afternoon I learnt that although the Philippines is a developing country, and the streets are what you’d expect from that, if you go into any mall in any city here you could be in any city in America. Outside it’s all run down buildings and street markets, and inside the mall it’s Starbucks, sketchers and a cinema. It’s very bizarre. I also learnt in my few hours waiting for the bus that pretty much everyone in the Philippines speaks English (also due to the large American influence in the country). It was finally time to get the bus to Banaue (no more nice train journeys for me). The bus ride was overnight and for the first two hours they played Skyfall (though the volume was so low no one could really hear it). I managed to sleep most of the way which was good.

    Day 2
    I arrived in Banaue at 5am and was met off the bus by a driver from the hostel I had booked. Before I got on his trike I had to pay a small fee to the Banaue tourism board for conservation of the area. We then took the short 30 second journey to my hostel (seriously I could’ve walked it in 2 minutes) where my very kind host let me go straight to sleep and said I could check in later. After a very welcome three hour nap I was ready to start exploring Banaue. I decided to ignore all the waiting trike drivers offering to drive me to the various view points of the rice terraces and walk to the route myself. And boy I am so glad I did. It took me about two hours to walk to all the way to the main view point along the main road, but on the way I passed 6 other view points all with amazing views. This was nothing like the Longji rice terraces. It was so green it was like a feast for the eyes. Even the views between the official view points were stunning. I spent the whole two hour walk thinking how amazing it was and taking photo after photo. Halfway up I met two lovely Philippino girls (Arielle and Daniela) who helped me take my staple jumping shot (thanks girls!). When I got to the main viewpoint I had a much needed drink break and consulted my trusted Maps.me app to see what to do next. I saw that there was a footpath that went down into the rice terrace and up the other side that looped back to the village. I asked the owner of the shop I was in if it was ok for me to walk the track and she said absolutely, just ask the locals I pass which way to go. Sounded good to me! I followed the steps all the way down to the bottom of the terrace, crossed over a small bride and started following the path along and up the irrigation of the various rice pools (not sure what the technical term is). After about 20 minutes I came across a small farm house and a local man came out and greeted me. I said “Banaue?” And he said “yes mam you follow the path, when you get to the bottom you see two paths, you go up, not flat, you go up”. I thanked him and went on my way. At the bottom I did indeed see two paths and I took the left one which ”went up”. Let me tell you that path was pretty damn steep! I was practically rock climbing up it instead of walking. At this point I thought maybe doing this walk alone wasn’t the best idea, but I was too far in to turn back now (and there was no way I could climb back down this section!). Finally I reached the top and the path became wider and started to follow the irrigation. For the next hour and a half I followed the path through varying widths of irrigation (trying not to fall into the rice pools). At one point it started to rain and again I questioned why I was doing this. But I had my raincoat and soldiered on. And the views were pretty stunning. Eventually I started to see more houses, asking each person that I saw “banaue?” And getting nods of encouragement as I went. Finally after a 5 hour round trip I reached the village again, pretty hungry but also pretty chuffed that I had completed my trek. I found a local cafe for dinner and then headed back to my quiet hostel for an early night.

    Day 3
    I woke up early to the sound of voices outside my room. It looked like my quiet hostel had some more guests. I went out and said hello to the four new people, two English guys a french guy and a french girl. We spent the morning swapping travel stories and trying to decided what to do today. The two english boys wanted to rent bikes and drove around the area. I wasn’t so keen as they had only learnt to drive bikes while travelling. We went into the village anyway to see if we could find anything. Unfortunately for them (fortunately for me) this wasn’t really the place to rent bikes, well at least not the automatic ones the guy were used to. Instead we decided to follow the main road in the other direction from the main rice terrace to a small natural pool we were told we could swim in. It took almost an hour to walk there and I’m not going to lie it was a bit of a disappointment. It was a very small rock pool in the middle of a small river. We also discovered that the water was absolutely freezing! And unfortunately by this point it was overcast so it wasn’t even that hot outside to make the pool a nice place to cool down. Nevertheless we had walked all the way there so we manned up and got in. It took me at least 10 minutes linger than the others to work myself up to getting in, and when I did I nearly died of shock it was that cold. And unlike most places you swim the initial shock or cold took a good 2 minutes to wear off. We stayed in the pool for around 20 minutes until it started to rain (on queue at 2pm). Luckily for us there was a small cafe right next to the pool where we took shelter and had a pretty tasty meal of noodles and vegetables. After the rain died down we headed back to the village where I got some snacks for my bus journey that evening. It was then back to the hostel to pack and wait for my bus back to Manila.

    So there you have my first three days in the Philippines.

    Next stop Bohol island.

    Paalam!
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  • Day6

    Willkommen in Banaue!

    May 10, 2017 on the Philippines

    Nach 9h Busfahrt von Manila aus haben wir das wunderschöne Banaue erreicht! Die Reisterrassen hier sind wirklich atemberaubend. Heute wandern wir durch die Reisterrassen im Nachbardorf Batad 💪🏼😊

  • Day5

    Hapao, Philippines

    November 7, 2016 on the Philippines

    Day Two Trek through Hapao rice terraces to the natural hot springs.

    We meandered along the narrow concrete passage ways for three hours until we reached the hot springs.
    At some points on our journey, looking down was not an option, it you fell one way was mud, the other was death.

    We stripped off and precariously stepped in to the hot bath temperature water. The combination of hot water and eggy sulphurous air took some getting used to, but eventually I relaxed on one of the smooth boulders and listened gushing white water behind.

    The highlight of the day for me was not the the hot springs but snaking through the landscape we had been gazing at 3 hours before... We were in the vista.
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  • Day3

    Banaue rice terraces. Philippines

    November 5, 2016 on the Philippines

    We set off from Manila airport at 930am in a hire car that took some getting used to.
    Driving through the city during Saturday market time was insane, but completely worth it as we got to see Manila from another angle and experience the mania of day to day life.

    Eventually we got on to the expressway (a drivers dream) which only lasted an hour or so unfortunately. It then became an A road of some sorts, cutting itself into the Carrabello mountains, 70 miles took us 6hrs!!!

    We arrived to native village inn, 9km outside Banaue town, 12 hours later.
    It was twilight when we were shown to our Ifugao style hut, we had no idea what awaited us in the morning.
    At 6am I opened the hut door .....
    I'll let the pictures do the talking!!

    Highlights/Top tips

    • hire you're own car and drive it yourself, not as scary as you'd think and we saw so much more for it

    • Native Village Inn - paradise!
    Cosy, peaceful stay and an experience in itself.
    www.native-villageinn.com
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  • Day4

    Batad Village, Ifugao rice terraces

    November 6, 2016 on the Philippines

    After our breakfast of sweet mango and fresh eggs, we met a beautiful human called Marvin.
    He was our guide for the next two days.

    Day 1 Trek

    Batad Rice Terraces, 8th Wonder of the World.

    In a nutshell one of the most stunning yet strenuous treks of my life,but so worth it.

    The amphitheatre of the 4000 year old agriculture engineering humbled all three of us, as we scaled the rice terraces and explored the valley base village.

    Unforgettable. Bucket list tick
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  • Day110

    Reisterassen

    December 21, 2016 on the Philippines

    Wir fliegen von Timor-Leste nach Bali, es gibt Reis mit Hühnchen. Bali nach Brunei -> Reis mit Hühnchen; Brunei nach Manila -> Reis mit Hühnchen. Wir gehen in Manila Essen, es gibt Reisrollen. Es scheint kein Gericht mehr zu geben, das keinen Reis enthält. Also was machen? Man fährt dahin, wo es noch mehr Reis zu sehen gibt!
    Banaue ist dafür genau das richtige Ziel. Der Reisanbau hat dort eine 2000-jährige Geschichte und dementsprechend sieht diese zerklüftete Berglandschaft auch aus. An jedem Hang, egal wie steil er ist, findet man Reisterrassen. Die sind zum Großteil nur aus Erde geformt und man fragt sich ernsthaft, wie so etwas halten kann.
    Der Weg dorthin ist nicht ganz einfach und bedarf einer 9-stündigen Busfahrt. Diese geht über Nacht, was angesichts des Verkehrs und der Abgründe die sich am Straßenrand schon mal auftun gar nicht verkehrt ist.
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  • Day111

    Reisterrassen Wahnsinn

    December 22, 2016 on the Philippines

    Das eigentlich Ziel der Fahrt ist aber nicht Banaue oder die nahegelegenen heißen Quellen, sondern Batad. Ein kleines Dörfchen, zu dem bis heute keine Straße führt. Die Bewohner scheinen aber Reis sehr zu mögen, weswegen sie den Ausbau der Terrassen auch etwas übertrieben haben. So bietet sich dem Touristen nun ein spektakuläres Bild über das Tal.
    Wie kommt man nun zu einem Ort, zu dem keine Straße führt? Eigentlich ganz einfach. Man nimmt ein Tricycle von Banaue bis zum Hangrutsch, der die Straße blockiert. Zu Fuß geht es über die Steine, die man gerade wegzuschaffen versucht, während weitere Steine von oben nachstürzen. Dahinter steigt man auf einen der lokalen Busse (natürlich aufs Dach, das ist authentischer), fährt eine wahnsinnig steile Straße hoch, fährt eine wahnsinnig steile Straße runter, bis diese einfach aufhört. Dann sind es nur noch 3km zu Fuß über unebene Pfade.
    Ein Geheimtipp ist es trotz des nötigen Aufwands nicht mehr, dennoch in einem sehr guten und ansprechenden Zustand. Neben den Reisterrassen gibt es dann auch noch einen Wasserfall zu sehen, dessen aufstobende Gischt und das schattige Tal eine willkommene Abkühlung darstellen.
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  • Day5

    Banue - Hapao Reisterassen

    May 9, 2017 on the Philippines

    Dank unseres unfassbar netten Guides Jimmy haben wir es geschafft nicht von den Klippen zu fallen 💪🏻 und tatsächlich noch etwas über Reisanbau und die philippinische Kultur gelernt :) Alle Bilder mit Personen drauf (Stephi&Ich) mussten leider zensiert werden... die 9 Stunden Busfahrt hierher haben ihre Spuren hinterlassen 😄

  • Day52

    Banaue - Reisterrassenparadies

    January 5 on the Philippines

    Juhuu! Schon wieder so ein magischer Ort, und diesmal gar nicht am Strand, sondern mitten in den Reisterrassen. Aber es dauerte eine Weile, bis wir dort waren.

    Von Sagada fuhr uns Marvin, unser super Fahrer über kurvige Bergstrassen an Erdrutschen vorbei nach Banaue. Für die 65km brauchten wir 2,5 Stunden. Schon direkt um Banaue liegen wunderschöne Reisterrassen und die Strasse ist gesäumt von Häusern, die selbst wie Reisterrassen gebaut sind.

    Am nächsten Morgen hatten wir irrsinnig Glück, denn schon beim Sonnenaufgang kündigte sich ein Traumwetter an. Das erste Mal in der Gegend seit 11 Tagen. Wili holte uns mit dem Jeepney in Banaue ab und Irene sollte unser Guide für den Tag sein. Man braucht so wenig um glücklich zu sein: Sonne, eine kurvige Strasse und ein Jeepney Dach. Und so fühlten wir uns hoch oben auf dem Jeepney frei und waren einfach nur happy. Etwas mulmig wurde uns nur, als wir ein zerbeultes Jeepney sahen, bei dem am Vortag an einem steilen Stück bergab die Bremsen ausgefallen waren. Aber es war nichts passiert. Nach weiteren 15 Minuten Wandern bekamen wir den ersten Blick auf Batad, ein Dörfchen in einem Reisterrassenamphitheater. Die Terrassen sind schon ca. 3000 Jahre alt und haben immernoch eine magische Wirkung. Wir wollten bleiben, an diesem Ort, wo man das Plätschern des Wassers, die Grillen und das Rauschen des Flusses hört, wo die Menschen alle so freundlich grinsen, wo man die Magie fühlen kann. Wir wanderten für Stunden durch die Reisfelder (autsch Muskelkater) zu einem Wasserfall und waren begeistert. Während Ute und Andreas statt des letzten Teils die Aussicht von einem Restaurant aus genossen.

    So kamen wir auch viel später als vereinbart, aber glücklich wieder in Banaue an und fuhren noch weiter nach San Jose. Wieder über eine kurvige Strasse, diesmal im Dunkeln und mit LKWs. Die einen schliefen und die anderen spielten Sudoku um sich abzulenken.

    In San Jose trennten sich dann wieder die Wege und Ute, Andreas und Lisbeth machten sich auf den Weg nach Manila, während wir weiter magische Orte suchen.
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Province of Ifugao

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