Contributed By: Beezz
While the Philippines is more renowned for its stunning coastlines, it also has its share of jewels when it comes to mountainous destinations. Among them is the small, tranquil town of Sagada, which is located 275 kilometers north of Metro Manila.
Although Sagada is in a mountainous region, it’s not really a location for tough uphill climbs per se; rather, this remote town at 5,000 feet above sea level offers a variety of outdoor adventures that would still prove challenging enough for your physical constitutions.
The region generally has temperate weather (mostly cool for the better part of the year) and boasts of wondrous waterfalls and cliffs, rich traditions and heritage, and luscious delicacies and food. All these make Sagada a destination for those who desire immersion in both nature and culture.
How Do You Get There?
Unless you have a private car, there are no direct trips from Manila to Sagada. You can only get there via Banawe, Bontoc, or Baguio, which is a trip that may involve 1-2 stops. The fares for all three transit areas are almost the same rates though.
**Editor Update: 12/2019 – There is now direct trips to Sagada via Banaue by Coda Lines. You can book your trip online here via Bookaway.com
Where Can You Stay There?
Despite its size and remoteness, Sagada has managed to embrace tourism. This means accommodation shouldn’t be much of a problem, even without reservations, as there are plenty of inns and lodges in the town. But the top accommodation pick for most travellers is the Residential Lodge Inn, owned by a very kind lady whom guests and locals call Tita Mary Daoas.
What Activities Await You There?
Spelunking in the Crystal, Lumiang, and Sumaguing caves. We recommend the Sumaguing-Lumiang cave connection for the challenge (takes about three hours getting from one end to the other)
Tours in the Underground River, Echo Valley, and Bokong (small) falls
Trek to and bathe in the ice-cold waters of Bomod-ok (big falls). The walk there takes about 2-3 hours
See ancient burial sites and hanging coffins up close
See wild horses frolicking around Sagada’s Marlboro country
Taste the famous lemon pie of Sagada at the Lemon Pie House
Witness the glorious sunrise on a cool morning at the Kiltepan viewpoint
All in all, my Sagada escapade was definitely a trip to remember and if you haven’t set foot there before, it’s time you include it next on your travel bucket list. It’s also an excellent side trip after touring around Baguio.
** Note: Pictures in this post (attributed to their respective photographer) were added to enhance the presentation of the contributed article. They are not from the author of the article.