Hapao Rice Terraces, Ifugao, Luzon, Philippines
Banaue is the gateway to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Ifugao rice terraces of Northern Luzon. The Banaue environs are visually beautiful, high in the mountains, sometimes shrouded in mist and cool rain.
The rice terraces are a fabulous testament to the inspired agricultural engineering of the Ifugao people. Some of these terraces were constructed 2000 plus years ago, and all are still in use today.
The best time to go is between February and May end, when it is least likely that the views will be obscured by low level clouds.
Tourists come here to enjoy the scenery, to gaze at it from one of the many view points, to trek through it, or to wake up in it. I remember how awed I was by the scale of these rice terraces on my first visit some 10 years ago. I have been to or through Banaue more than 50 times since and often take the scenery for granted now.
For me, the pleasure of visiting Banaue is staying in Batad or Bangaan, and waking up in the morning with the view of the terraces through my window – this I can’t tire of. My last visit to Banaue and Batad was in January 2010. For more information about Batad, see my Batad
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