How to travel to Banaue to visit the rice terraces?
Chloe Griffiths: Myself and my partner and due to travel to the Philippines in the next two weeks for a three-week trip. We were hoping to travel up to Banaue to visit the rice terraces and the surrounding area. We were just wondering is this still possible after the floods or have the roads been badly damaged? Also I am aware there used to be internal flights to Baguio, but I cannot find any airline which still provides this service. Do you know if this is correct? Is there any easier way to get to Banaue or is the only way to get a bus from Manila?
Ryan: Hi Chloe,
To tell you honestly, I really can’t say whether travel to the Cordilleras (including Banaue) would be a great idea right now. We were meant to go up to Banaue too in about 2 weeks time but right now we are still tad unsure. We will try calling tomorrow the bus companies traveling to that area and get a better assessment of the roads going to that area. There used to be flights going to Baguio but as far as I know, these flights were discontinued quite possibly due to safety reasons (these are just personal conjectures of course)- if we are not mistaken, the Loakan Airport in Baguio sits on top of a plateau with precipitous drops on both sides. It takes a lot of travel as well from Baguio to Banawe mind you because you either go by way of Bontoc via the Halsema Highway and other alternate routes which takes you around and around. Ideally Baguio to Banaue should be 9 hours travel time – the same number of hours you would usually spend on a bus from Manila direct to Banaue. Personally, I am not big fan of Baguio and I could skip it for all the world. However, if you decide to push through, you can go straight to Banaue from Manila and head out to Sagada in Mt. Province instead – GORGEOUS PLACE. Check out my Sagada Travel Guide under the Destinations List.
Will keep you posted about bus travel to Banaue as we were really planning of going there (but more as a stopover for Sagada) as well about the same you guys do – will just check the situation with the landslides and infrastructure.
Chloe Griffiths: That’s great, thanks very much for your help.
I will keep an eye on the website to see if there is any update on the roads.
Thanks for the advice about Baguio, sounds best to head straight up from Manila – so fingers crossed the roads are ok.
Also is it worth continuing up to Tuguegarao and trying to fly south from there? Or best just to go back to Manila
Thanks in advance
Scott: Hi Chloe,
As far as I know there aren’t any buses direct from Banaue to Tuguegerao. Banaue is off the main highway between Manila and Tuguegerao. If it’s 9 hours from Manila to Banaue and 12 hours from Manila to Tuguegerao, then I guess it would be about 4 hours from Banaue to Tuguegerao if you could find a bus going there directly.
However, around Tuguegerao there are meant to be some really beautiful caves, some with waterfalls and chapels inside. And near Callao Cave you can watch tens of thousands of bats fly out of caves at dusk. The flight to Tuguegerao from Manila is about 1 hour.
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