It was like, “Saan tayo pupunta ate?”, “Kailangan ba?”, “Tuloy pa ba tayo?”, “Ayy, ‘wag nalang tayong magpunta.’” Haha sounds crazy. Until, I packed my things, took a jeepney outside the camp and tadah! I've reached the bus terminal. I saw the signage of the buses... “SAGADA”. So, tuloy pala talaga kami!
I never been into Sagada before, but I heard this place many times. The place was featured in the movie “That Thing Called Tadhana”, a Filipino movie starring Angelica Panganiban and JM De Guzman. I was intrigued by the place because of the movie and also I read reviews and it was kind a amusing that it was stated there that Sagada is one of the places where broken hearts go aside from Baguio City. Ohh?
Sagada is part of Mountain Province. It is located 275 kilometres (171 mi) north of Manila (taking at least 12 to 15 hours by bus), 140 kilometres (87 mi) from Baguio and it is adjacent to Bontoc, the provincial capital. Most of the guides are natives, also known as Igorots.
Mountain Province Vegetable Garden
How we got there?
I took a bus together with my companion Shyne from Center Mall in Baguio City. One ride trip would cost two hundred twenty pesos (Php 220.00) per person. It was a six (6) hours ride and though it’s a long travel I enjoyed seeing other part of Mountain Province.
Vendors selling fruits and vegetables
Sagada Municipal Hall
Where we stay?
We found and chose Labanet Lodge as the place which we could stay overnight and rest. We left our bag packs in the lodge before going to our first destination. The fee for our stay in the said lodge was just three hundred pesos (Php 300.00) per person which is good for twelve (12) hours. Rooms are simple, clean, has a balcony and there is a free wifi in the lobby. I guess that is the cheapest rate the place has.
Reminder: Be sure to bring cash, not a credit card because there is no bank in Sagada. But don’t worry too much because actually, Sagada is not a city compared to Manila, so it would not cost you a lot of money to say “wow” to all the adventures and nice views it could give.
Labanet Lodge Entrance
Inside the Accommodation
Where we went?
Before the adventure started, we first registered in Sagada’s Tourism Office. It is a must thing to do first before doing any adventures you may think in the place. You have to pay thirty five pesos (Php 35.00) as a registration fee.
After paying the tourism registration fee, we decided to go first at Eco Park. Why we really wanted to go there? One of the reasons is simply because we really wanted to see in person the “Hanging Coffins”. I always see and read it in many reviews in the internet and I wonder how big those coffins are? How it was dangled? And how old are those coffins?
I found out that the coffins were century old already and owned by the Pagans. I’ve also noticed a chair being hanged as well. The tourist guide told us that the chair we saw was the chair that the dead person being sat and it was as well being hanged because the spirit of the dead person was already attached in the chair.
We passed by at Sagada’s Eco Park scary old cemetery when we got down to the hanging caves. The place was named Eco Park by the way, because when you shout your voice bounced back or echoes back. I also tried it and a voice seems like talking back to me lol!
Remember that anyone couldn’t get inside the park without a tour guide. It is a must that tourist should hire a tour guide as one of the policies of the tourism office especially when you want to go inside the Cave.
Going back we’ve crossed an old Episcopalian church in Sagada and it is famous as Church of St. Mary the Virgin.
Early in the morning on the next day, around four a.m (4:00am) we were picked up at Labanet Lodge by our tour guide heading to Kiltepan View Point. We waited there until Mr. Golden Sun show up! It was my first time to wait for a sunrise. There were really many tourists whose like me and Shyne wanted to experience the beautiful Kiltepan-Sagada Sunrise and the waiting portion was so worth it!
Foods for sale for early bird
We also tried for the first time doing another adventure new to us which is Spelunking. We did it inside the connection cave from Lumiang Burial Cave to Sumaguing Cave. The tour guide told us that it would took us around three to four hours to finish the adventure, but in actual we did it within two and half hours.
Beautiful Rocky Mountain
Entrance of the Cave
At the entrance of Lumiang Burial Cave, we saw coffins again and that were all owned by the Pagans. The coffins were preserved in the cave for many years ago.
Old Pagan Coffins
Inside the Sumaguing Cave, there are a lot of stalactite and stalagmite formations like mushrooms, broccoli, turtle and frog shapes.
I recommend doing Spenlunking if you want to visit Sagada, mind you it is the best experience Sagada could give you. Sagada is rich in natural wonders and the following are the other places that you could visit:
Bomod-ok and Bokong Falls
Where we eat?
Hungry tummy hunted us after our six (6) hours of travel from Baguio City and our Eco Park Adventures on our first day. Strolling around the streets, we found a catchy restaurant named “Yoghurt House" where we decided to have our first dinner. The restaurant not just sounds good, their foods also taste delicious! I love their color violet rice, dinakdakan and their famous yoghurt.
We also tried the menu of Country Inn and Restaurant which offers good and tasty breakfast and pastries and Sagada Lemon Pie House which offers delicious pie.
Sagada Public Market
Wine Refilling Station
Abandoned Vintage Van
Sagada Art Club Wall
This travel diary is my first time adventure in Sagada, but all I could say, the place offers good people, nice places and tasty foods. If ever I’ll be asked to explore Sagada again, I will surely say yes. Why not? Sagada is perfectly imperfect to stay!
I love to hear any thoughts from you, kindly share that in the comment section below ^.^