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Rice terraces of Banaue

March 19, 2014 Mary Towns to visit

Map BanaueIn order to begin a travel itinerary for a trip to Banaue, your first consideration should be an explanation of how to plan a journey to Banaue. The distance from Manila is only about 300 kilometers although it seems like you have entered a completely different world. You are now quite far removed from the palm trees and beaches of the southern Philippines. The bus ride from Manila directly to Banaue leaves promptly from Autobus at 10pm. daily arriving at 7am. Currently, this bus line is the most up to date and reliable information and the street address may vary a few streets from that listed. Be certain to check carefully , much of the tourist information may be outdated. The best thing to do is allow yourself some extra time to arrive punctually for the departure. Mode of transport in Banaue will be the trike.

Banaue, a Living Cultured Historical Landscape

Banaue Rice Terraces

Banaue Rice Terraces

The history of Banuae is about the Banuae rice terraces. The lfugao and other tribal cultures have resided in the region for more than 6000 years. Here the great ancestors formed a complex kinship system by toiling at a rice centered farming culture. The main purpose for a travel itinerary to this area would definitely be to visit the 8th world wonder rice terraces of the Philippines. In 2001 this living cultured landscape was put on the list of World Heritage in Danger. Although each generation has successfully passed down the knowledge to perfectly maintain the terraces without written documentation, the desire of farming is not as strong in the younger lfugao generations.

People of the Earth

Betel Plant

Betel Plant

The Cordilleras are a cornucopia of tribal cultures. Plan a night or so in your travel itinerary just to spend with the people in this area. The lfugao, meaning “people of the earth” in their native tongue are a very interesting people. About two kilometers from town is the main . lookout point to the rice terraces . Here you can still find lfugao elders dressed in traditional native costume who will allow you to take pictures with them for a small fee. At harvest time the people have lavish thanksgiving feasts where the rice wine flows freely and betel is everywhere for the chewing.

Colorful Tribal Customs

Only in Banaue can you find a tribe that speaks English in the remote most part of the Cordillera highlands. The locals are friendly and almost always smiling. Plan your travel itinerary during peak seasons. The Banaue Hotel offers a cultural show nightly on the weekends where you can learn about the tribes, tradition and the different types of dancing. Note in your journey planner that the hotel has excellent food and accommodations.

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