Ifugao – Land Of The Eighth World Wonder
Brief Description
Ifugao is home to a thriving ancient culture and host to the famous
rice terraces carved from the base of the mountainsides to the top,
which appear to be massive green stairways reaching to the sky.

The famous terraces had been inscribed in UNESCO’s World
Heritage List in 1995 as “a continuing cultural landscape” and
likewise considered by the U.S. Association of Civil Engineers as an
engineering marvel built by unschooled and free men not of slave labor.

It was a credit to the inherent wisdom of the Ifugao forefathers that
a forest and watershed management system was instituted to help
sustain the terraces that serve as the basic food source of the sturdy Ifugaos.

The Ifugao native huts could probably be among the world’s first
prefabricated houses that do not use a single nail or metal to fasten their parts.

Ifugao Geography


Ifugao, a land-locked area located at the foot of the Cordillera
Mountain Range, is bounded on the west by the province of
Benguet, Nueva Viscaya on the south, Isabela on the east, and on
the north by Mountain Province, with a total land area of 251,778 hectares. It is 322 kilometers north of Manila.

Political Subdivision
As of 1988, the province is politically sub-divided into 11
municipalities and 178 barangays, with Lagawe serving as the provincial capital town.

Climate
The climate of the province is described as having the dry season
from November to April and the rainy season during the rest of the year.

The hottest months are March and April while the coolest months are November up to February.
spacer spacerPopulation
NSO 2000 census data indicated that Ifugao has a total population of 161,634.

Language / Dialect
The English language is widely spoken and understood among the
populace, second to its mother tongue which is the Ifugao dialect,
and followed by the Ilocano dialect and then Tagalog.

Major Industries
Farming; trading industry (gift, toys & house wares); services;
manufacturing (garments & textiles); and food & beverages.

ifugao history

Ifugao History…

Ifugao was formerly a part of the old Mountain Province. It was created as an independent province on June 18,1966 by virtue of Republic Act No. 4695.

The name is derived from the word “IPUGO”. Pugo means “hill” while the prefix “I” means “from”. The Spaniards changed “”Ipugo”” to “”Ipugaw”” and it was finally changed by the Americans to Ifugao.

For the Ifugaos, custom is the basis of all laws. But these customs would mean nothing if not supported by ancestry knowledge. Among the Ifugaos, extensive pedigrees exist.

They are the graphic representation that puts in evidence one of
the most basic principles of the Ifugao culture: “We can not but do
what our ancestors told us” (Lambretch CICM 1964).

Ifugao became the center of warfare during the last stages of World War II. It was in Ifugao, particularly in Mt.

Napulawan, where General Yamashita, the known “Tiger of
Malaya,” decided to put his last stand against the Filipino and American forces.

He informally surrendered to Captain Grisham of the 6th US Army
in the Philippines, based in Kiangan, Ifugao, before he was flown to
Camp John Hay where he formally surrendered.

Ifugao finally gained provincial status on June 18,1966 with the
municipality of Lagawe as the capital town.

Ifugao Is Famous For…Banaue Rice TerracesDubbed as the “Eight
Wonder of the World,” the Banaue Rice Terraces start from the base
of the mountain range and reach up to several thousand feet high. It is said that their length, put end to end, would encircle half of the globe.

Made 2,000 years ago, these rice terraces manifest the engineering
skill and ingenuity of the sturdy Ifugaos.

Streams and springs found in the mountains were tapped and
channeled into irrigation canals that run downhill through the rice terraces.

Batad Rice TerracesLocated at Barangay Batad in Banaue, these
rice terraces are shaped like an amphitheater.

The Batad Rice Terraces can be reached by a 12-kilometer ride
from Banaue Hotel and a 2-hour hike uphill through mountain trails.

Bangaan Rice TerracesThe rice terraces cluster and village both
showcase the typical Ifugao community, where the livelihood activities are within the surroundings.

The Bangaan Rice Terraces is accessible in a one-hour ride from
Poblacion, Banaue then a 20-minute trek down to the village. It can be viewed best from the road to Mayoyao.

Mayoyao Rice TerracesThese rice terraces can be found in
Mayoyao, 44 kilometers away from Poblacion, Banaue.

The poblacion of Mayoyao lies in the midst of these rice terraces
thus, upon arrival in the town, one is awed with a breathtaking view
of the rice terraces, where all the dikes are tiered with flat stones.

Hapao Rice TerracesMore of Ifugao’s world-famous stone-walled
rice terraces can be found in the municipality of Hungduan.

The Hapao Rice Terraces can be reached witihn 55 kilometers from the capital town of Lagawe.

Banaue ImbayahThe Imbayah ethnic sports festival is a unique
three-day affair that is celebrated only once every four years.

Activities include an ethnic parade portraying the evolution of the Ifugao culture. This is followed by ethnic games participated in by various barangay delegations.

Philippine War Memorial ShrineThe enormous memorial shrine
was built to commemorate the end of World War II.

A concrete pyramid-type structure that resembles an oversized
Ifugao native house, it depicts historical events, from Filipino
opposition to Spanish rule to the Death March, and the role of the
Ifugao and American troops in the defeat of General Yamashita.

The shrine is also used as a vantage point of the poblacion, other
neighboring barangays, and the capital town of Lagawe. The shrine is located at Linda, Kiangan. It can be reached within 10 kilometers or a 15-minute drive from the capital town.

Gotad ad KianganThe festival, held in Kiangan, is actually a part of the Ifugao prestige rites.

Gotad ad Kiangan traditionally involves a festive celebration filled
with singing, dancing, and drinking wine.

Gotad ad HingyonIt is one special day in twelve feasts that are
celebrated by the Ifugao royal class to please their gods.

Modern Ifugaos celebrate Gotad in April in the municipality of Hingyon.

Activities include cultural parades, ethno-modern sports, and a
booth competition where the best of Ifugao crafts are displayed.

The Ifugao Epic “Hudhud”The UNESCO World Heritage List has
cited the Ifugao epic “HUDHUD” as among the “Masterpieces of
the oral and intangible heritage of the humanity.” The late anthropologist Fr.

Francis Lambrecht, CICM brought HUDHUD to the international
scene, which he claims has been sung by generations of Ifugaos
since the late 17th century and still is a central part of the Ifugao life.

The social characteristic of the ancient Ifugaos as seen in the
HUDHUD showed a strong matriarchal society. The epic is chanted by Ifugao women, usually at harvest time, funeral wakes, and weddings. Once chanted, the epic will go on for two to three days.

There used to be many versions of it but the advent of Catholicism
in the province has helped dilute this heritage.

Banaue / Cordillera MountainbikingThe rugged mountains of
Northern Luzon offer fabulous scenery and give you a close look at
some of the Philippines’ most fascinating tribal groups.

Start in Baguio, where local bikers will be happy to guide you along routes ranging from a quick run up Mt. Sto. Tomas to a lung-busting full day down to Ambuklao Dam and back.

If you want more mountain adventure, you’ll find plenty here. Try a two-day ride to Sagada, then base yourself there to explore the numerous local roads and trails.

From Sagada, you can ride to Bontoc, then out through untouched
mountain wilderness to the rice terraces of Banaue.

From Banaue, you can make side trips to the equally spectacular
terraces at Hungduan and Mayoyao, far off the usual tourist trail.

Or wind your way from Baguio to Ambuklao and up to Abatan, then down to Cervantes and over historic Bessang Pass.

Up here, the mountain air is cool, the people you meet are friendly,
and the rugged roads will challenge even the most dedicated of upland bikers.

things to do and see in infugao

Things to Do and see in Ifugao…
spacer Historical
spacer Philippine War Memorial Shrine (Kiangan)
Gigantic memorial shrine to commemorate the end of WWII. A concrete pyramid type structure which resembles an oversized Ifugao native house.

Depicts historical events from Filipino opposition to the Death March and the role of the Ifugao and American troops in the defeat of General Yamashita. Could be used as a viewpoint of the poblacion, other neighboring barangays, and the capital town of Lagawe. Located at Linda, Kiangan and is 10 kilometers away or a 15 minute drive from the capital town.


Million Dollar Hill
The hill overlooking the poblacion of Kiangan got its name from the last war when the allied armies spent millions of dollars’ worth of bombs and ammunitions to annihilate the enemies in the area.


General Yamashita’s Surrender Site
Houses relics memorializing the end of WWII in the Philippines. Details of the surrender and signing are available. From here, General Yamashita was brought to Baguio for his formal surrender to the victorious allies.


Mt. Nagchayan
Where Japanese troops fought fierce battles during WWII. The mountain has several grottos, stone walled trenches, and fox holes. One can also find rusty shells on this old battle ground.
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Mount Nagchajan
Photo Credit from Pinoy Mountainer

Cultural
Ifugao Museum (Kiangan)
Displays Ifugao artifacts and is under the supervision of the
National Museum of the Philippines, with Ms. Rosario Guinid as curator.
It is 32 meters away facing the shrine and 300 meters away from the Municipal Hall.

am-an Village
A typical village situated 240 steps down from the Banaue Hotel’s swimming pool. Here woodcarving and hand woven products are produced and sold to travelers.

Bokiawan Village
12 kilometers from Banaue, located in the center of the Bokiawan
rice terraces; where traditional Ifugao practices of land use and livelihood still exist.

Pula and Cambulo Native Village
A rustic village in the first leg of the trekking route from Banaue viewpoint to Banga-an. This cobbled stone village offers a native house stay. The ancient craft of bark cloth weaving thrives here.

Apfo’or Burial Tombs

Apfo’or Burial Tombs


Large stone mausoleums containing the bones of the town’s ancient warriors and elite. The construction of these Igloos represents the resourceful use of Ifugao stoning technique.

Makaliwagha & Lebhong Burial Caves
Filled with wood coffins and the remains of the first people of Mayoyao.

A legend tells of an attentive lizard leading people to these three
chambers designating each one for men, women, and children.

Lumauig Stone
A huge enchanted black rock held by only three smaller stones in the middle of the Balangbang river. It is believed to mean that Mayoyao people will stay strong and happy as long as the stone stands.

Other Scenic Sites:
Bocos Village, Poitan Village, Batad Village, Hapao Village, Bangaan Village, Ducligan Village.

These villages are charaterized by the presence of a wholesome
community where the livelihood activities are within the
surroundings, and the houses are clustered in a designated area. These villages showcase the typical Ifugao community.

Bagnit Waterfalls and Numbungug Waterfalls (Kiangan)
Located in Julongan barangay.

Bagnit is a stunning series of cascading falls running over 250 feet
while Numbungug is a single majestic fall of over 80 feet in height,
falling to the Ibulao river tributaries.

Chuyong Viewpoint
Located near the town proper, it affords a panoramic vista of the
Mayoyao World Heritage site cluster. The glory of the site is unrivaled.

Kibayuyong Stone (Hungduan)
A legendary stone which lies next to the Hapao river. The site offers an adventurous spot for river swimming and diving.

Bogya Hot Springs
Located in Ba-ang, it lies in the Hapao river which serves as delighful respite after trekking.

Mt. Amphalagag (Aguinaldo)
Ideal for trekking; at the foot are a series of languid pools for lounging during the afternoon.

Man-Made
Banaue Rice Terraces (Banaue)
Dubbed as the “Eight Wonder of the World”. The rice terraces start from the base of the mountain range and reach up to several thousands feet high. It is said that its length, if put end to end, would encircle half of the globe.

Made 2,000 years ago, these rice terraces manifest the engineering
skill and ingenuity of the sturdy Ifugaos.

Streams and springs found in the mountains were tapped and
channeled into irrigation canals that run downhill through the rice terraces.

Batad Rice Terraces (Banaue)
These rice terraces are shaped like an amphitheater and are located
in Barangay Batad.

The site can be reached by a 12-kilometer ride from Banaue Hotel
and a 2-hour hike uphill through mountain trails.

Bangaan Rice Terraces (Banaue)
The rice terraces cluster and village showcases the typical Ifugao
community where the livelihood activities are within the surroundings.

It is a one-hour ride from Poblacion, Banaue and 20-minute trek down to the village. It can best viewed from the road to Mayoyao.
spacer
spacer Mayoyao Rice Terraces (Mayoyao)
This spot is 44 kilometers away from Poblacion, Banaue. The
poblacion of Mayoyao lies in the midst of these rice terraces thus,
upon arrival in the town, one is awed with a breathtaking view of
the rice terraces where all the dikes are tiered with flat stones.

Hapao Rice Terraces (Hungduan)
More stone-walled rice terraces, located in the municipality of
Hungduan and 55 kilometers from the capital town of Lagawe.

Nagacadan Rice Terraces
Found in Kiangan, these terraces show how forest management and
rice terracing are complementary.

Magat Dam (Alfonso Lista)
Reputedly the biggest dam in Asia. Located near the municipality
of Alfonso Lista and about 25 kilometers from the town center of Santa Maria.

Festivals
Banaue Imbayah
A three-day festival celebrated after every 4 years. Activities include
an ethnic parade portraying the evolution of the Ifugao culture
followed by ethnic games participated by barangay delegations.

Tungoh ad Hungduan (every April)
A cultural night of songs and dances, and ethnic parades featuring
authentic Ifugao ethnic wear and games such as guyyud and dopap. A climb to Mt.

Napulawan for the adventurous group is another highlight of this event. Tungoh means rest days for the farmers in Hungduan after the planting season.

Igkumtad ad Mayoyao (Mayoyao; every May 1)
An annual community ethnic festival usually held in April,
celebrated with singing, dancing, and drinking rice wine.

Gotad ad Kiangan (Kiangan)
A part of the Ifugao prestige rites and traditionally involves a festive
atmosphere that is celebrated with singing, dancing, and drinking wine.

Gotad ad Hingyon
One special day in 12 feasts celebrated by the Ifugao royal class to please their gods.

Modern Ifugaos celebrate Gotad in April in the municipality of
Hingyon with cultural parades, ethno-modern sports, and booth
competition where the best of Ifugao crafts are displayed.

Ammung ad Alfonso Lista (Alfonso Lista)
A special festival celebrating the harmonious co-existence of the
different ethnolinguistic groups in this municipality.

Freedom Day Celebration (Kiangan)
An annual victory celebration of the informal surrender of General
Yamashita to the American Forces stationed in Kiangan that ended
the WWII and marked the birth of peace.

Special Interest

Mt. Amuyao
The 8th highest peak in the Philippines, with an elevation of 2,702
meters above sea level, located between the boundary line of
Banaue and Mayoyao and between Ifugao and Mountain Province.

Its summit provides the climber with a breath-taking panorama of
Mountain Province, Isabela, Nueva Viscaya, and Ifugao.

Mayoyao legend says that the first Ifugao couple, Bugan and
Wigan, took refuge in this mountain during the 40-day deluge that
inundated the province.

Being the only survivors, they became the first ancestors of the Ifugaos.

Mount Napulawan (Hungduan)
The second tallest mountain in the province, towering 2,642 meters
above sea level, frequented by trekkers.

This mountain was the final refuge of General Yamashita. Conquerors of its peak are fascinated by the thick tropical rain forest and its rare flora. Trees near the peak are unusually short.

Mount Anapawon
Centrally located in Ifugao, this mountain peak is considered a potential camping site.

It provides a breathtaking view of Hungduan municipality, the
low-lying municipalities of Lagawe and Kiangan, and the rice terraces of Hingyon.

how to get there in ifugao

How to Get There
Ifugao can be reached by Auto Bus, Dangwa Tranco Bus, and KMS Bus from Manila; and from Baguio City through Ohayami Bus, Dangwa Tranco Bus, and KMS Bus.

Ifugao Emergency Services

Medical Facilities

Ifugao Provincial Hospital

Lamut District Hospital

Hungduan District Hospital

Mayoyao District Hospital

Alfonso Lista District Hospital

Aguinaldo Emergency Hospital

Good News Clinic Banaue

Immaculate Conception Clinic Banaue

Police

Ifugao Provincial Headquarters

Lamut Police Station

Lagawe Police Station

Kiargan Police Station

Banaue Police Station

Hungduan Police Stataion

Aguinaldo Police Station

Alfonso Lista Police Station

Fire Station

Fire stations are located near or within police stations.spacer

Tourist Information and Assistance

spacerPolice Stations and Outposts are located in all towns.

To be continued

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