cordillera

Spanish Church Ruins of Pudtol, Apayao – A Testament to Tribal Resiliency

Posted on April 18, 2012

Pudtol Church in Apayao was abandoned in 1815 due to persistent attacks by the Isneg tribespeople The ruins are overgrown with tree roots Like Abra and Quirino, Apayao is one of the most overlooked provinces in Luzon, more so in the tourist circuit. Most people have no idea about this place, other than the fact that this landlocked province used to be attached to Kalinga. Surprisingly, a number of its northern lowland towns are very accessible from the national highwayRead More

Race Across The Terrace: Sagada (Part Three)

Posted on February 28, 2012

The Applai people of Sagada entombed their dead in hanging coffins propped along limestone cliffs  I never knew walking amidst the dead could be a pleasing experience. After all, Sagada is indeed the gateway to paradise.To get to this highland Shangri-la rediscovered by European backpackers in the 1960s, the route departing Banaue surmounted rougher terrain where pine trees soon replaced tree ferns, as it ascended higher into the Cordilleran interior. Not surprisingly, a gazillion more terraces flanked the way, butRead More

Unraveling Abra

Posted on July 20, 2011

“A tourist sees a place, while on the other hand a traveler seeks,” a friend of mine recently posted on Facebook. True enough, more than visiting popular spots, what excites me more about travel is discovering off-the-beaten track sort of places. Colonial edifices, like this one in Tayum, are some of the architectural heritage of Abra During a trip along Ilocos region’s northern coast, fellow travel blogger Gael of The Pinay Solo Backpacker and I detoured southward to avoid anRead More

Kalinga: Land of the Last Headhunters

Posted on September 13, 2010

September 10-12, 2010 A three-day exploration of the remote villages of Tulgao and Butbut in Tinglayan with Benjamin Espina of visitsagada.com, documenting the vanishing generation of tattooed Kalingas. Once the fiercest headhunting warriors of the Cordilleras, the Kalingas are on the brink of completely losing their ancient way of life to modernization, including the art of tattooing. Most of the tattooed individuals are in their 70s and 80s. If efforts won’t be made to preserve this art form and otherRead More

ROAM Issue No. 2: Race Across the Terrace

Posted on July 13, 2009

Swoosh! Another tree branch barely missed my head. It’s been 11 hours since I left Manila, with the last hour’s ride proving to be a branch-dodging, butt-bruising and utterly hair-raising experience not inside but atop a jeepney overloaded with young boys spitting red moma, sacks of fresh greens, and a black native pig kept cool with some large leaves. While we bore the summer’s heat, the wide-eyed swine was comfily bound for slaughter on first class. As the four-wheeled circusRead More