Welcome back to the second part of my blog in which I share the places we visited and various activities, places we ate and our itinerary for the 3 days 2 nights getaway.
Places to visit:
Banaue Rice Terraces:
This is the first stop over of the trip to take pictures and view the man made rice terraces.
If you want to get a better picture you’ll need to pay the local fee of 20 php to be able to walk on the manmade path way to the edge of the rice terraces.
A 15 to 20 minute van drive from Sagada town to the peak. We arrived there and it was pitch dark since we arrived there at around 4:30 AM, the only light’s you’ll see is the places to eat breakfast that are right beside each other. You can eat Lugaw or Goto (rice porridge) with different toppings, bread, cup noodles and the offer hot drinks as well, like hot coffee and hot chocolate. You just need to bring 200 php to have a full meal while waiting for the sun to rise.
This place was made popular by the local movie called “That Thing Called Tadhana” in where the leading lady screamed due to love life frustrations.
This is an activity that you have to do, you’ll definitely appreciate the beauty of nature and what Sagada has to offer.
St Mary Church:
The only catholic church in town, which I’ve seen and visited. The church is a stones throws away from the basecamp of the echo valley hiking trail.
It’s a hiking trail in which you head to the peak of the valley and see the entire town of Sagada. You’ll need to get a tour guide on the basecamp to guide you through the valley. You’ll pass through a graveyard, and head to the hanging coffins. The local guides shares a lot of story about the history of the graveyard and the hanging coffins.
Spelunking is defined as the exploration of caves, especially as a hobby. This activity is not for the faint of heart, you’ll have to use your whole body (butt, back, hands, and feet) to traverse the cave. You’ll see limestones and stalactites and stalagmites and as well as cold water which magical heals all the pain of not wearing any kind of footwear when traversing the cave. We didn’t see any kind of footwear that had the right grip to traverse the caves. A foggy place, you won’t experience the coldness of the cave since you’re moving most of the time. Once in a lifetime experience.
Places to eat:
The Sagada Lemon Pie House:
Had to revisit this place, the lemon pie is still delicious. You must try the lemon pie, the first and original. Say hello to the big dog and feed the cat with your leftovers. They’re friendly, they’ don’t eat humans. (We came out alive didn’t we?)
All the rice meals we ordered not only looked good, but they tasted good. When you want to eat here, make sure you come in early. The order line during dinner gets pretty long, when i mean a long line it goes out to the streets.
Things to take home:
Strawberry Pastillas by Kambays
Sagada, Mount Province
P: + 63 928 334 9118
This is a must try, you can buy this at a store just beside Sagada Brew, say hi to the baby that’s manning the store, he stay silent when you smile at him and make faces. It only costs 100 php for 3 packs. I should have bought home more, one of my regrets. Luckily one of my co traveler dragged me down to the store to buy these treats.
G&B Special Buko Pie
Tuao North, Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya
I rarely buy Buko (Coconut) Pie, due to the injustice that the local famous Buko pies have done. But this has definitely flipped my opinion and raised the standards on how Buko (Coconut) Pie should taste like. I know this place is not within Sagada but I just had to share it.
Whenever we wife travel if we have a lot of time to plan our trip, we a lot 2 days (1 day for the trip to the place, 2nd day is to prepare to head home) just for travel so we can have the energy and not feel rushed during our travels. (We’re really getting old) Land travels are really tiring, sitting for more than 12 hours in a moving van passing through a winding road.
Day 0: START OF THE TRIP
21:00 – Departure from Quezon City to Sagada
Day 1: REST
06:30 – Arrival at Banaue Rice Terraces
11:00 – Arrival at Sagada / Check in at inn (inclusive of 3 stop overs)
12:00 – Lunch
18:00 – Dinner
Day 2: ACTIVITY DAY
04:00 – Wake Up and Preparation
04:30 – Welcome the Sunrise at Kiltepan View Deck
08:00 – Visit st Mary’s Church, hike to Echo Valley and Hanging Coffins
12:00 – Head back to town and eat lunch
13:00 – Go around town to explore the stores. Talk to locals and see what the town has to offer
14:00 – Spelunking – Sumaging Cave
17:00 – Head back to town
18:00 – Dinner and Rest
Day 3: PACK UP AND HEAD HOME
04:00 – Packup to head home / check out. Eat Breakfast
05:00– Departure from Sagada
23:00 – Arrival at Quezon City (inclusive of 3 stop overs)
If I were to recreate our travels in the past, we went to Lumyang Cave for Spelunking activities and to see the hanging coffins we went to the Burial Caves. Lumyang Cave and Burial Caves is a stone throws away from the town. You have two options to get there, walk 30 minutes from the town or get a local transportation (Tricycle). Lumyang Cave was a much easier path to go Spelunking compared to Sumaging.
After all this activities, was the 16 hour land trip worth it? My answer is a simple… YES. It lets us reconnect back to nature, takes us to a place where you can meditate and let you hear your own thoughts, realize how simple life should be.