June 17, 2021
We are now on the third part of our Philippine tour. Here are the first 2 parts of this series if you want to join us on this tour.
And now, we are going to visit the following places of Luzon:
Cordillera Administrative Regions
If the first and second parts of our tour are mostly beaches and churches, this time we are going to visit the mountainous side of the Philippines, though definitely, beaches will always be present.
Lies on the northeastern tip of mainland Luzon under the jurisdiction of the town of Sta. Ana, where it is blessed with a beautiful coastline. Palaui made Sta. Ana more beautiful with its white sandy beaches and panoramic coves, hidden waterfalls, a century-old lighthouse, and lovely people. Sta. Ana is a protected landscape and seascape managed by the DENR that's why until now it is so beautiful and untouched.
The Callao Cave is the premier attraction in the Peñablanca Protected Landscape and Seascape. You need to climb 184 concrete steps to reach the entrance of the cave and it is the most accessible among the caves. This cave is featured in one of the movies but I just can't remember the title of the movie. If you are going to ask me if it is worth climbing the 184 just to see what's inside, I'll definitely answer yes. One of the chambers of the cave is converted to a chapel/cathedral like by the locals, and a rock formation serves as the altar of the chapel lit by a stream of light coming from a rooftop opening just like in the picture. The Cathedral is the main attraction of the cave and mostly used in postcards and tourism ads.
While in the area, you must also try a wooden boat ride in Pinacanauan River where you can witness the bat cave, scenic rocky cliffs, and picturesque river banks with clean greenish water that is ideal for swimming.
Lies in the southernmost section of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) and if you wonder if Benguet and Baguio are the same, nope it's not. Baguio is geographically located within Benguet. Baguio is classified as a Highly-Urbanized City while Benguet is dominantly mountainous. Mount Pulag the highest peak in Luzon is located here in Benguet. You can also find the Rice Terraces here.
Sagada Mountain Province is home to the famous historical and mysterious hanging coffins, limestone caves, stunning waterfalls, scenic and calming mountain valleys, and friendly Igorots that let people discover its rich culture and traditions preserved over time.
Remember the movie " that thing called tadhana" where they tagged Sagada as "the place where broken-hearted go".
This shot is a sunrise shot at Sagada mountain, usually, this place is like a sea cloud when the weather is too chilly but when we got there the view was so clear so instead of capturing the sea of clouds we capture the beauty of the mountains with the early morning sun.
This is how it looks when it's so foggy and with the sea of clouds.
Hanging Coffins of Echo Valley
This place is one of the tourist spots of Sagada. The Igorot people of Sagada have traditionally ‘buried’ their dead in colorfully painted coffins clinging to the sides of limestone cliffs, or piled up at the entrance of caves. Igorots believe that the higher the dead were placed, the greater chance of their spirits reaching a higher nature in the afterlife.
Spelunking at Sumaguing Cave
Sumaguing Cave has the largest chambers of all the caves found in Sagada, thus earning its nickname the "Big Cave." You'll find stalagmites and stalactites form inside the caves over millions of years and are truly a sight to behold.
Spelunking is not for the faint-hearted, but first-timers are welcome to give it a try. Did I try it? Yes, but only on some parts that I will not get wet because I had my period back then :( but at least I didn't miss going down there and was able to experience going inside that cave.
Now, let's go back to Highly-Urbanized City of Baguio
Baguio is called the "City of Pines" because it is also home to tropical pine forests. Baguio is also the Summer Capital of the Philippines because of its all-year cold weather and also because of the cold weather the city became the spot to escape the chaotic scenes of Manila.
Baguio offers a lot more than its cold weather, you'll find Burham Park at its center with gardens and lakes. Though the city is surrounded by mountains, but it is a well-developed city with a lot of commercial establishments in it.
There are so many things to do in Baguio aside from going to the parks. You can also visit the BenCab museum, have fun at the treetop adventure at Camp John Hay, buy fresh goods at the Baguio City Public Market, look for the cheapest clothes and shoes at Ukay-Ukays, pick fresh strawberries at La Trinidad Strawberry Fields, Discover Tam-Awan Village, pose for a photo at The Mansion, Enjoy the nightlife at Session Road, buy ube jam at Good Shepherd Place, get a view of Baguio at Mines View Park, discover books by local authors at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, experience nature at Baguio Botanical Garden and a lot more.
This is our last stop for this tour, Most of the places that we cover in this article are the cold areas of the regions except for Palaui Island.
Our next tour will be:
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