"Banaue Rice Terraces - 8th Wonder of the World" Province of Ifugao by cyberhunk

Province of Ifugao Travel Guide: 359 reviews and 1,056 photos

Dubbed 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.

Ifugao is also famous for these other attractions:

Batad Rice Terraces
Located 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 Terraces
The 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 Terraces*
These 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 Terraces

More 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 Imbayah
The 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 Shrine
The 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 Kiangan
The 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 Hingyon
It 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. WOW PHILIPPINES

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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. WOW PHILIPPINES

Pros and Cons
  • In a nutshell:If youre in the Philippines, Banaue Rice Terraces is a must to see!
  • Last visit to Province of Ifugao: Aug 2004
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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