Escape to Sagada and discover a pine-scented wonderland of waterfalls, spiralling rice terraces and valleys home to mysterious hanging coffins. Planted among Luzon’s Cordillera Mountains, the town is surrounded by mist-shrouded peaks that shelter an endless cloud sea, which is best viewed from Kiltepan Peak at sunrise. Wander through Sagada’s one main street – passing backpack-clad school kids, stray dogs and the tempting lemon pie house – to Echo Valley. Here, the cliffs are dotted with wooden coffins hung for over two millennia by the Igorot people to protect their ancestors’ remains and help their spirits flee to the heavens.
Sagada days are made for leisurely hikes that showcase green-yellow terraces of rice, stone churches left behind by Spanish colonists and waterfalls where villagers splash in the sun. Beneath your feet, if you dare to venture down, there are vast, water-logged cave systems just begging to be explored. Sumaguing and Lumiang are the largest, home to a labyrinth of alien rock formations, echoey bat caverns and underground rivers. Perhaps the best way to experience Sagada, though, is to soak up its laid-back vibes while sipping luwak coffee and watching the sun set in bruised shades of purple and pink over the mountains.
Want to experience Sagada’s mountain treasures? Talk to our Philippines team who can arrange ethical tours with local guides to the area’s hanging coffins, caves and rice terraces.