SAGADA, MOUNTAIN PROVINCE, PHILIPPINES
Sagada is one of the municipalities of Mountain Province located in the northern part of the Philippines. It is best known as the top destinations for travelers who want to unwind and experience the silence of the mountains and do extreme activities such as exploring caves and hiking. It started its mainstream popularity when a Filipino movie called “That Thing Called Tadhana,” where it showcased the beauty of Sagada and tagged as a place to heal from a heartbreak. It become a popular destination for solo traveler that’s why I chose Sagada as my first destination to do the challenge of traveling alone.
HOW TO GO TO SAGADA?
There are two ways to go to Sagada:
- Via Baguio- ride a Victory Liner bus in Cubao or Pasay going to Baguio. The fare is Php 450-500 and travel time is 4-6 hours. I advise you to take the night trip so you will be able to catch the first trip of GL Lizardo Trans going to Sagada. They are not accepting reservations so it’s better to be early in their terminal. The fare is around Php 200-250 for a 6 hours trip.
- Via Banaue- ride an Ohayami Bus in Sampaloc, Manila. It is advisable to book your ticket in advance. The fare is Php 450-500 for a 10 hours trip. As you arrive in Banaue, Ifugao, ride a jeepney going to Bontoc, Mountain Province for 1.5-2 hours and fare is Php 150. In Bontoc, you need to transfer to another jeepney going to Sagada for Php 45. The travel time is 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Bontoc, Mountain Province
Side trip to Batad, Ifugao
WHAT TO DO IN SAGADA?
Sagada is known as a place of challenging activities. You should pay a registration fee to tourism office and keep the receipt as this will serve your entrance fee to all of your activities. I did the Cave Connection (entrance in Lumiang Cave and exit in Sumaguing Cave), chased the sunset in Lake Danum, did the Eco- Tour (St. Mary’s Church, Echo Valley Hanging Coffins, Sagada Underground River, and Bokong Natural Waterfalls). Also, have time to visit the Sagada Pottery and Sagada Weaving House. And the most important is have time to chat the locals and know more about the place and their culture. There are still a lot of activities that you can try aside from I mentioned above, just refer to the map that the tourism office will give to you.
My favorite activity is the sunrise in Kiltepan. I witnessed how the skies change as the sun is rising and with the sea of clouds that is in front of me. I am in awe and amazed for the experience and have many personal realizations. This the best sunrise experience so far in my life and I will never get tired to experience it all over again.
The beautiful sunrise in Kiltepan Viewpoint
WHERE TO STAY IN SAGADA?
I advise to book a reservation in the guesthouse you prefer to stay especially during summer. For my experience, it took me one hour to find an available room. I stayed in Sagada’s Guesthouse and paid Php 250 per night for a single bed and shared bathroom. There is no plug in my room so I have to charge my gadgets outside my room or in the lobby. Do not look for an aircon room because the weather is colder than an aircon.
WHERE AND WHAT TO EAT IN SAGADA?
Sagada’s foods is made of fresh ingredients. The price is a little bit expensive but the serving is good for sharing. Most of the restaurants are located downtown and just beside one another so it will not hard for you which restaurant to go. I recommend for you to try their :
- Lemon Pie in Sagada Lemon Pie House
- Yoghurt in Yoghurt House
- Pinikpikan and Pinikpikan House
- Classic Inutom in Salt and Pepper
- Vegetarian Adobo in Gaia Cafe
- Local brewed coffee in Sagada Brew
Note: Once you register in the tourism office, they will give you a Sagada’s map. Keep this map during or even after your stay. It will be helpful since the map includes the contact number of inns and guesthouses, activities and their prices (yes they have standard price for all activity), transportation, and emergency numbers. There is no problems if you are solo because the tourism office will arrange a trip to you if there are groups that needed additional joiner to their tour.