Though Banaue is commonly just part of a longer itinerary for most people who wants to explore Baguio and Sagada, there are still quite a few things you still need to know when visiting this province. Especially as a first-timer, there’s nothing wrong with equipping yourselves and preparing for your journey to one of the Philippines’ popular travel destinations.
In this quick travel guide, we hope to help you in your adventure in the North!
When’s the best time to go to Banaue?
The months of April to May and October to November are the best times to visit Banaue. This is because the rice terraces are at their greenest and picturesque state at this time.
It is not recommended to visit during the rainy seasons of July and August because there is a high possibility of landslides in some areas, making travel more difficult and dangerous.
Photo source: Guide to the Philippines
How to get to Banaue from Manila?
Traveling to Banaue is a long and grueling journey, and the only way to get there is through land transportation. There are no direct flights and especially no ocean near enough for a ship to get there.
If you’re commuting from Manila, a bus trip usually takes about 9 hours but that still depends on the traffic. Most people opt to travel at night so they can just sleep most of the time. There are plenty of bus companies you can choose from.
Photo source: Adventurous Lens
What to do in Banaue?
Besides visiting the very famous Banaue Rice Terraces, there are plenty of things for visitors to do here.
Banaue is so rich in culture that you should spend time immersing themselves in it, and in the process delving deeper into the rich history of our ancestors. The Tam-an Village is a great place to do it. There, you’ll get to know and experience how Ifugao’s live their lives. You’ll also get a glimpse of how beautiful and unique their craftsmanship is.
Since we’ve also mentioned connecting to nature, what better way to do that than to go on a hike and explore the vast unspoiled natural beauty that surrounds Banaue. You can go on a hike or even swim in Tappiyah Falls or Chappah Falls.
Photo source: Tam-An Village
Where to eat in Banaue?
What better way to have a meal than to have a great view right in front of you. And Banaue is just the right place to have it. Surrounded by amazing sceneries and a warm rustic atmosphere, your meals in Banaue might be one of the best you’ll ever have.
You can try visiting these places for the best and affordable food:
- Native Village Inn Restaurant
- Banaue Homestay
- 7th Heaven’s Café
- Sanafe Lodge and Restaurant
- Las Vegas Lodge
Photo source: Philippine Primer
First-timers should drop by the Tourism Office of Banaue so that they can orient you about available tours and transportation transfers.
Be mindful of the schedule and availability of public transportation especially in Batad to avoid spending more.
There’s a great deal of walking, hiking and trekking involved so you better prepare yourselves physically.
Cell reception is pretty weak and sometimes none at all. So best be prepared to go off the grid. We suggest enjoying the time you have with some peace.
Since Banaue is located on top of the mountain ranges, the weather can be pretty cold. So best be prepared with clothes that will keep you warm even if you go during the summertime.
Everything is on a cash basis. The homestays and restaurants don’t accept credit cards so having cash handy will save you from any inconvenience. There are also no ATMs available in Banaue or anywhere near it.
Support the local community by buying locally crafted souvenirs or trinkets.
Respect the local culture.
Photo source: Remote Islands
Banaue might seem like the perfect off the grid trip, and it certainly is. But there’s no harm in researching and planning your travel well. In this way, you’ll not only save money but you’ll also spend your time efficiently, making your trip that much enjoyable and memorable.
Let us know how your trip went. With love to hear all about your adventures.