Banaue-Sagada, Cordillera Region

I cannot say much about Sagada except that it was really too much for me to intake in just 3 days. I think that I need more time for the experience to actually sink into me. We stayed here for 2 nights and 3 days. The first day was for traveling here, we left Manila at 10pm and arrived Banaue passing the back way and not from Baguio at around 7am where we had our breakfast. From Banaue we had to drive all the way to Sagada which took us around another 2-3 hours. We got there at around 10am where we first took a long rest and had our lunch. We stayed at Hidden hill, which costs about Php 300 per head a night. Very quaint and hidden, it was a really nice place to stay in.

The viewpoint of Banaue Rice terraces. There are so much of the terraces all over the place so you could practically call everything Banaue Rice terraces.

The viewpoint of Banaue Rice terraces. There are so much of the terraces all over the place so you could practically call everything Banaue Rice terraces.

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Hiking up to Bomod-ok falls. It takes about 2 hours going there and another 2 hours coming back. Don’t forget to should when you’re at the echo valley.

Day 01: Banue Rice terraces and Sagada, Bomod-Ok falls

We were advised to go to the Bomod-ok falls first today instead of the cave connection because apparently it was a “holiday” the next day and they said that we would not be able to visit the Bomod-ok falls because they would be resting.

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The Fedelisan people believe that the water here has healing powers. So if you want to try, you may swim in the falls. It is very cold though so be careful. Also the rocks are very slippery.

Going to the Bomod-ok falls takes about a 2 hour hike up and down the terraces. It was a lot of fun talking to our guide about the culture down here. They are mostly Christians but they also follow their own traditions down here. Each person has their own Christian name and Native name. We learned a lot about how each family has a part in the terraces as a source of livelihood and how they use some of the grass as fertilizers. The view was breathtaking and the trek was long but worth it. It was also another 2 hour hike to go back up another route which was a bit easier since it was less steeper.

Day 02: Cave connection from Sumaguing to Lumiang cave then we spent the afternoon in Ganduyan Museum, Pottery house and hike around Echo Valley to the Hanging Coffins.

Cave connection is optional. You may opt not to take the route from inside the cave of Sumaguing to Lumiang, but I would recommend this because it was so much funner!

Cave connection/ Spelunking is optional. You may opt not to take the route from inside the cave of Sumaguing to Lumiang, but I would recommend this because it was so much funner! Php 300 per head.

This was the most tiring day ever! I was falling asleep between the trips because I was so tired from spelunking in the cave connection. You can opt to do the cave connection or not, but I would encourage you to try it because it was such a memorable experience! You wouldn’t believe how beautiful it was inside that cave. Don’t worry if you’re not so experienced. There are a lot of guides to help you go around the cave. I would suggest that you go here in small groups so that you do not take much time. Also bring slippers to go around the cave because sandals could cause you to slip easily. It took us about 4 hours inside the cave and we were exhausted when we got out.

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The lady guided me in making the pot. It was really difficult even if she made it look so easy.

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This is my finished product! I encourage you all to try it out. Php 100 per person

After lunch we headed to Echo valley which was another hike to the hanging coffins. Really interesting tradition of the Fedelisan tribe here. After another long hike we headed to Ganduyan Museum, and I was already dozing off. Ganduyan was the original name of Sagada but due to a misunderstanding with the Americans the place was called Sagada. The museum is really one to visit and I would encourage that you ask them to guide you around. The owner of the museum takes care of this place very well and it gave me a good look into their traditions. Then we headed to the Pottery house where I made my first ever pot. It was pretty difficult and the lady in the pottery house kept on scolding me (haha). It was so much fun! I wish that I had more time here because it really was a lot of fun. Php 100 per person to try the pottery making.

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Trying to catch the Sunrise from kiteplan tower at 5am.

Day 03: Sunrise at Kiteplan tower, leaving Sagada passing by the route to Baguio and the Highest point of the highway.

We woke up at 430am just to watch the sunrise on Kiteplan tower. Although today Mr. Sun didn’t show up we did get good pictures. How I wished that I was on top of Mt. Pulag at that time. It was a sea of clouds and It was really cold to be up there at 5am. After watching the sunrise we left Sagada for Baguio. On the way there we stopped over at the highest point of the highway for a bathroom stop and to stretch our legs. Then we passed by La Trinidad strawberry plantation before heading home.

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This way going home is actually longer than the back way but it was part of the tour to be passing by this way so we did.

We spent a total of Php 6000 each including accommodations, food, transportation and the tours. We booked the hotel and the itinerary with Parana tours. It cost us about 3800 to book with them which included the individual rooms and the van transpo with the tour guide and most of the tours. The rest of the 2200 pesos was for the food, the cave connection Php 400 each but Php 300 if you do not book this with the agency and pasalubong shopping. It wasn’t so bad for a first try and I would love to come back to explore some more of Banaue and Sagada. There are just so much things to do here and I really didn’t expect to have that much fun. My next trip might be to Ilocos but since I don’t want to ride a van anymore I plan to just take a plane going here. It’s just too much of a hassle to be sitting around in a van for 12 whole hours.

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Strawberry Yoghurt from the Strawberry Cafe. I will come back to eat more of their food!

For the places that I ate in Sagada check out my post on Exploring the food in Sagada, Cordillera Region. Pagyaman! Fedelisan tribe.

Exploring the food in Sagada, Cordillera region

I wish that I had more time to go around Sagada. I would have loved to try their Pinikpikan and other interesting food that were posted online and on trip advisor. I guess that I would just have to come back here to try more of their food. There are too many places that you could choose from to eat here. I will probably need another half week to stay here just so that I would not get as tired and I could go around the other towns and provinces near the area as well.

1. Sagada Brew, Sagada

This place is one that you must not miss when you come to Sagada. It just recently opened last October. They have a good menu for a relatively cheap price and for really big servings. Try their Hot Chocolate Php 100 and their Sagada Brew Pesto Php 150. They also have really good red rice. There are a lot of mosquitoes here at night so as much as possible come here during the daytime.

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They also sell coffee beans here and honey to take home.

2. Sagada Lemon Pie house, Sagada

I wasn’t actually impressed with their famous Sagada Lemon Pie Php 30 per slice.  I was expecting a lot more because of its reviews on trip advisor. Although the prices here were also cheap, in fact cheaper than Sagada Brew. I would come here for the ambiance. The teas here were also good. Php 15 for the Mountain tea and the Lemon tea.

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Lemon Pie with some Lemon tea and mountain tea.

3. Yoghurt house, Sagada

I was not able to try any of their dishes here. Although looking at the menu, the apple sandwich really sounded good. They serve a lot of healthy meals here. Actually most restaurants in Sagada have very earthy sounding meals. I just decided to try their yoghurt which was Php 85 for the Yoghurt with honey. I was expecting a lot more and I preferred the one from the Strawberry cafe.

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Yoghurt with Honey

4. Strawberry Cafe, Sagada

The best yoghurt in this town. I could not stop eating their yoghurt here, I finished it in a matter of seconds with the strawberries. Although the place had really bad service the yoghurt was worth the come to try here. Php 70 for the strawberry yoghurt, plus its cheaper than yoghurt house.

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Strawberry yoghurt

I definitely need another half  week or so in Sagada just to get around some more and eat a lot more. I really enjoyed my stay here and everything was so overwhelming. I enjoyed learning more about the Filipino culture and I cannot wait to write more about them in my next post about our adventures, spelunking, sunrise watching and so much of the things that we were able to do. Really an amazing place to visit and so much better than Baguio. Probably one of the best trips I’ve had this year.

Click on each link for each restaurant that we ate in. VISIT SAGADA! It’s really worth the long travel time.

Sagada Lemon Pie House, Sagada

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Inside lemon pie house, it was really cute since the seats were on the floor and you could remove your shoes.

I was kind of expecting a lot more from Sagada Lemon pie house, because a lot of the bloggers or advices on trip advisor would say that they have really good Lemon Pie here. I was not so impressed with their lemon pie and I found the crust hard to bite. Our lemon pie was also cold, maybe if it was fresh we would have appreciated it more.

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Sagada Lemon pie Php 30 per slice. Lemon tea was Php 15 per cup and the Mountain tea was Php 15 per cup as well. I really liked the mountain tea, it was lemon grass. Then the lemon tea was just lemon tea with honey.

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Breakfast meal, Fried eggs, Garlic rice with Longanisa Php 100. This was really cheap for a good price too.

They also serve Pinikpikan here in the Sagada lemon pie house which I would have wanted to try given enough time. Pinikpikan is this chicken that is battered first before served to you. Good for 4 persons and only available by reservation it costs Php 600. I would not come back for their lemon pie, but I would like to try their pinikpikan, A specialty in Sagada.

Yoghurt House, Sagada

Yoghurt house in Sagada is rated as one of the top restaurants. I really liked their menu, Although coming from a heavy breakfast and lunch I will have to come back here just to try the other meals on their menu. I was only able to try their Kiwi Yoghurt Lassie Php 99 and their  Natural Yoghurt with honey which was Php 85.

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I preferred the Yoghurt at the Strawberry Cafe. This was also good though Php 85

On their menu I noticed that there were a lot of salads, vegetables and curry. The next time I come back I would love to try their menu out as well as their other Lassie drinks. Their menu is very appropriate for vegetarians and health buffs.

Sagada Brew, Sagada

Mang Delio the one managing the restaurant is the friendliest person I met in this town. He entertained us a lot and talked a lot about himself to us too. This restaurant was the newest but probably the best and most established one here. I loved the place more in the morning because at night there are a lot of mosquitoes flying around.

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Sagada Hot Chcolate, Php 100. It was expensive but I will say that this was the BEST hot chocolate that I had ever tasted. You can buy the cocoa and coffee here too.

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Chicken Pesto Sandwich served with salad, Php 150. For the serving size food here is relatively cheap. I really enjoyed the salad here. They serve really good and crunchy salad with a really good dressing.

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Sagada Brew Pasta, Php 150 Tomato sauce with anchovies, Etag (Sagadan smoked ham), Garlic, olives and basil served with toast. This was really good too. I would put this up for recommendation.

You should not miss the salad and the hot chocolate, If you do come to Sagada this should be the first and the last place that you eat in. They even gave us complimentary cookies and brownies. I was impressed with the food. Plus considering the prices, it was relatively cheap. The serving size was also big compared to other restaurants here. There is apparently a branch here in Metro Manila which I will blog about soon when I find it.

Strawberry Cafe, Sagada

My first post on one of Sagada’s favorite restaurants, Strawberry cafe. This was my favorite Yoghurt house here in Sagada. They also serve breakfast lunch and dinner. If you come to Sagada I would definitely recommend coming here. Although the staff are a bit lazy here as it is a province, I did not have a problem with it. It didn’t take them too long to make the food.

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Yogurt with Strawberry, Php 70. They also serve Plain yogurt, Yogurt with Mango and also Yogurt with Banana

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Ham and cheese omelet with rice, Php 120

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Corned beef omelet with rice, Php 120

I loved their yogurt. The real yogurt, you know not the kind you’d buy here in Manila that taste like ice cream or sherbet. If you come to Sagada this place would be a must try! It’s along the main road so I doubt that you will miss this place. Everything is along the main road of Sagada and walking distance.