is our primary area of operations.
It can be broken down into a number of sectors.
Tours can be designed to link these sections in a large range of options.
Tour 1: 12 days, Cordillera Mountains and North Luzon Coast
Start in Manila and then on to Baguio. Baguio is often written off as a way station on the road to the mountains, but it has a fascinating history and its own points of interest, as is worth a look around. The sprawling market, in particular, is an interesting point of interface between highland producer and lowland consumer, and sometimes the other way around. Dependent on schedules, we try to make enough time to explore Burnham Park, laid out in the colonial days by Daniel Burnham, who also designed urban plans for Chicago and Washington DC, Session Road, and to visit the market and at least a few of the city’s excellent restaurants… with a knowledgeable local guide, of course.
We travel from Baguio to Sagada, up the Halsema highway, two lanes of concrete etched into the mountains, carrying, though pine forest, vegetable terraces, and rice terraces, moving into the heart of the Igorot tribal territory as we go. Sagada is a complicated place: a small town in the mountains noted for a high level of education, fluency in English, strong connection to traditional tribal couture, spectacular mountain scenery, and a huge variety of activities and adventure sports. We’ll be here for 2 ½ days, and you’ll choose from a menu of activities including spelunking, canyon exploration, rock climbing, rafting, and mountain biking for the hardcore adventurers, along with scenic treks along ridgelines and to waterfalls or viewpoints and more culturally oriented visits to pottery, rattan weaving, and traditional backstrap loom weaving workshops and exposure to traditional villages and rice terraces. The food is excellent, so keep yourself active to make up for what you’ll eat!
Travel Sagada-Bontoc (45 minutes), see the Bontoc museum, an excellent collection of tribal antiquities and a good introduction to traditional culture. We proceed through the magnificent scenery of the Upper Chico River Gorge (in season you’ll have the option of doing this section on a raft) to Kalinga Province, and to the traditional tribal village of Buscalan, where you’ll meet Whang-od, the last surviving practitioner of the traditional Kalinga tattoo style.
Morning in Buscalan (catch the sunrise for great photo ops), afternoon hike to Tulgao, that is a traditional village set among sprawling rice terraces.
Hike to Danano, another traditional village, with a stopover at a stunning combination of waterfall and hot spring, set only a few meters apart in a deep mountain gorge.
Hike down to Tinglayan. Drive to Tabuk (this section can also be done by raft in season). Relax and recover from all of those tribal homestays at the Grand Zion Garden Resort… a bit of well-deserved comfort!
Drive up to the scenic north coast of Luzon, where mountains reach the sea, and the beach destination of Pagudpud, known for golden sand and spectacular sunsets.
Start the day with a Beach Day in Pagudpud. Relax and soak up the sand, sun, and sea… or try Surfing, Windsurfing, or Kitesurfing!
Day trip to Adams, a small town set in the midst of a tropical rain forest, inland over the first mountain range, jungle waterfall treks and river tubing await!
Drive to Laoag City (1 hr), fly out for Manila.
More beach days can be added if desired.
A stopover at the Mt Pinatubo Caldera can be added between Manila and Baguio if desired
Tour 2: North Luzon Mountains and East Coast Beaches
Day 1: Fly Manila-Tuguegarao, drive to Grand Zion Hotel, Tabuk. Relax among the gardens and get ready for some trekking!
Day 2: Drive up the Chico River Valley, deep into the heart of the Kalinga Mountains. Proceed to Buscalan.
Day 3: Morning in Buscalan, hike to Tulgao.
Day 4: Waterfall/Hot spring visit in morning. Hike down to Tinglayan and proceed to Sagada via Bontoc
Day 5: Sagada activities
Day 6: Sagada activities
Day 7: Drive Sagada to Barlig, a high altitude town set in the mossy forests of eastern Mt Province
Day 8-9: Trek over Mt Amuyao to Batad, Ifugao.
Day 10: Batad Rice terraces and waterfalls.
Day 11. Drive from Batad to Dinadiawan, home of some of the best beaches on the east coast.
Day 12: Dinadiawan beach day.
Day 13: Drive to Baler… more beaches, this time with surf.
Day 14: Baler beach and surf day. Take a night trip back to Manila.
Tour 3: Mountains and east coast beach… but with some differences!
Day 1: Manila to Baguio
Day 2: Baguio to Sagada
Day 3: Sagada Activities
Day 4: Sagada Activities
Day 5: Drive to Barlig or Banaue.
Days 6-8: Eastern cluster activities. Depending on chosen route, this can be trekking in the Kadkaln Mountains, a Barlig-Batad trek, or a conventional Banaue-Batad-Mayoyao trip.
Day 9: drive to Nagtipunan
Days 10-11: Nagtipunan activities: river tubing, jungle treks, caves, rock climbing
Day 12: drive to Dinadiawan morning.
Day 12-13: Beach at Dinadiawan. Afternoon of Day 13 drive Baler
Day 14: Beach and surf day at Baler. Take a night trip back to Manila.
Tour 4: La Union Surf to mountains
Day 1: Manila to San Juan, La Union
Days 2-3: Surf and sea in San Juan
Day 4: proceed to Sagada via Bessang Pass
Days 5-6: Sagada activities
Day 7: Proceed to Buscalan via Bontoc
Days 8-9: Kalinga trekking
Day 10: Fly out of Tuguegarao