5-7 day luzon trip straight from manila THINGS TO DO AND SEE
Replies: 14 - Last Post: Oct 15, 2012 8:42 PM Last Post By: PIkayaker
Oct 14, 2012 12:52 PM
5-7 day luzon trip straight from manila THINGS TO DO AND SEEHello ALL,
We are flying into manila and want to start our 30 phillipines back packing trip with the northern part before we work our way down to the south. What are specific things we should schuale into our trip? Which places should we see and why. The only thing I know of is the rice terraces but not sure where they are located and the mountains. Are there specific places we should stop and things we absolutely have to see and what are our best options of travel for those 5-7 days?
Your Help is appreciated :)
Oct 14, 2012 2:00 PM
Oct 14, 2012 2:45 PM
Oct 14, 2012 4:42 PM
3Here's a link to boost your interest
Oct 14, 2012 5:42 PM
4for sure, the best places to visit on North Luzon are the Cordillaras....banaue, batad Sagada, depending on weather conditions. It's a grind getting there, but worth it for a week. Pinatubo trips are based out of Angeles city....fun place for a single guy. other nice beaches are on the Zambales coast of the south china seas.
Ocean travel there is fun, cheap and exciting.....choose your weather and ship carefully.
Oct 14, 2012 6:29 PM
Oct 14, 2012 6:42 PM
6If you arrive in Manila in the morning, there's a big chance that you can catch the only bus that goes straight to Banaue. Only one night trip per day.
Travel time is 8-10 hours depending on the traffic, road repairs etc.
So basically you start your first day following day.
In Banaue you must visit the Batad Rice Terraces, the most beautiful I have seen. (one day hiking activity)
Hungduan (also in Ifugao province) rice terraces is also listed in the Unesco world heritage site, It's more beautiful compared to the rice terraces found in the town proper of Banaue.
Bangaan rice terraces is more or less 5 kilometers away from Batad junction.
Kiangan rice terraces is also in the list of Unesco.
Out of 5 listed, Mayoyao rice terraces was kinda elusive for most of my trips because of the road conditions.
After your days of hiking or sightseeing in Banaue, you can (must) consider going to Bontoc and see the Maligcong rice terraces. You can then go straight to Sagada after your hike in Maligcong rice terraces. There's also a museum in Bontoc that might be of interest to you.
When in Sagada, there's a couple of activities up there, you won't get bored, guaranteed.
After your Sagada adventure you then go to Baguio to complete your Cordillera loop. (Or drive straight to Vigan.)
From Baguio you can choose to go to Vigan, Ilocos Sur, spend maybe another night there then drive to Laog, Ilocos Norte to catch a flight back to Manila or choose a different Island. Or drive back to Manila 10hours +-.
Edited by: thobs
Oct 15, 2012 3:07 AM
7Here is a bit of info from my journey in February 2012.
If flying into DMIA (AKA Clark), you will find an ATM and exchange facilities in the arrivals area.
To get from DMIA to Baguio:
• There is a counter at Clark where you can buy a bus ticket to Baguio (P350, 6hrs). They take you to Dau and sort out a Baguio bus for you. This is the most convenient method.
• If you want to do it as cheaply as possible, walk out the airport parking gate, then along the street to opposite the first street on the left. Here you can wait for a jeepney to “Main Gate” jeepney station near Angeles (P12), then walk or jeepney (P8) to Dau.
• A taxi to Dau will cost about P400.
• There are many Baguio buses from Dau (eg: “Philippine Rabbit”, P250, 4-5hrs).
Dau is close to Angeles, a “Sodom and Gomorrah” city full of bar-girls, hookers, sleazy old westerners, poverty and pollution...best avoided!
Baguio is a large commercial and educational town. There are plenty of ATM’s in the city centre- the only functioning ATM’s in the region- so stock up here. No real reason to linger here, so- if necessary- stay the night and get one of the several morning buses to Sagada from Dangwa termina,l which is off Magaysay Ave and behind Baguio Central mall opp the city market
Sagada is a tranquil mountain town. It caters well for travellers, but does not feel touristy at all. If you enjoy a laid-back pace of life, fresh mountain air, friendly locals and good food, then you may wish to stay longer than anticipated...I know I did!
I stayed at Sagada Guesthouse (near bus terminal, 0929 680 7849) which was clean and quiet (P250). Other travellers also recommend Residential (decent, basic; P200) and Sagada Homestay (clean, peaceful, friendly; P200).
For food, I can recommend Yoghurt House for great yoghurt, veg pasta and rosti; Lemon Pie House for superb chicken curry and very good fruit pies; Kimchi for OK food and the best place for a social beer
I highly recommend the cave connection trek, an underground passage linking Sumaging and Lumiang caves. It is a 2hr guided tour (P800) through tight holes, large chambers and (optional and recommended) water. Consider taking a torch, although your guide will have a gas lantern and that generally provides enough light and also keeps both your hands free for scrambling and climbing. Register for hiking at the tourist info centre (0700-1700) in the municipal building. You can also arrange a guide here through SEGA, or further down the road is the other guiding organisation, SaGGA (0600-2100).
For transport out of Sagada:
• To Bontoc: Jeepneys (P20, 45min) hourly b/w 0600-1200.
• To Banaue: go to Bontoc and transfer there.
In Bontoc I stayed at Chury-a Hotel & Restaurant (0906 430 0853), which had clean rooms (dbl P400) and a decent restaurant.
For transport to Banaue:
• Immanuel bus, 0845 and 1045 (P120, 2.5hrs) or; Manila-bound Cable Tours bus or; jeepney departing around 0800, 1000 and 1200 (or when full), P250.
Maligcong has towering, sprawling rice terraces which apparently rival those of Banaue, but without the tourists…I had the place to myself. I walked there from Bontoc (approx 1.5 hours) and returned by jeepney (P20). Well worth a half-day trip. And if you go early morning, you may be back in Bontoc with time to visit the highly regarded museum.
Banaue was a disappointment, partly because the weather was not pleasant for hiking, but mainly because it felt like a grubby little tourist town…well not so bad, but compared to Sagada it was a tourist trap. I stayed at Halfway Lodge & Restaurant (E side of Main Rd, 100m N of Main Square; 386 4082; P200-300), which was clean and had decent, cheap food.
There is a night bus to Manila.
Hope this helps.
Oct 15, 2012 5:06 AM
IMO, BANAUE was or is a disappointment to some if not most to tourist mainly because, they stayed and explored only at the town proper of Banaue.
Some tourist never had a chance to visit Batad, Bangaan or Hungduan rice terraces, maybe because they weren't aware that there are other clusters of rice terraces aside from the one they saw at different Viewpoints in the town proper of Banaue.
if I bring some Friends in Banaue, my first question is this.
What exactly do you want to see in Banaue? They would answer: the rice terraces.
So which particular rice terraces? They: we don't know.
Followed by, Do you know that the particular rice terraces found at the back of 1,000 peso bill is not listed in the Unesco world heritage site?
Then I would show to or bring them to different clusters of rice terraces,.
Oct 15, 2012 6:06 AM
9There's an ATM at the rural bank in Sagada, only accessible during banking hours, which in Sagada are Tues-Sat. There's also one at the PNB in Bontoc.
I don't care for the town of Banaue, really need to get out to surrounding areas. Batad is best if you have limited time and just want to see some spectacular terraces, but Happao, Hungduan, and Mayoyao are worth the trip if you have time. In terms of interaction with local people I find Sagada more conducive than Banaue, but that's an opinion. I live in Sagada, so it may be a biased opinion.
There are many other areas with extensive terracing and great scenery... The Barlig/Kadaklan/Natonon area in eastern mt Province is one, Kalinga is another. Not really suitable for a quick loop though.
Oct 15, 2012 6:33 AM
Oct 15, 2012 6:42 AM
Oct 15, 2012 3:02 PM
12Lots of day hikes, multiday if you like that sort of thing, waterfalls, viewpoints, spectacular mountain scenery, tribal villages, caves, rock climbing, rafting, mt biking... mostly active stuff, but some people just like the tranquility. We get city folk in Sagada who just want to sit under the pine trees, breath clean air, and enjoy quiet.
Oct 15, 2012 8:06 PM
13There are pine trees in the phillipines.. We are from Canada... There are pine trees here as well! :)
Oct 15, 2012 8:42 PM
14In the Philippines pines are mainly found at higher elevations. Along the Central spine of the Cordillera, from Baguio up through Sagada, they are the dominant trees. I can see a few thousand from my balcony. The eastern ridge (Banaue side) of the mountains is more mossy forest. Got some of that here is Sagada as well, especially along the higher and more remote areas, tangled stunted deciduous trees with lots of moss dripping off.
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