Aside from the majestic Mayoyao Rice Terraces, Mayoyao municipality also boasts some enchanting waterfalls steeped in local legends. One of them is the A’pfaw Mahencha Falls in Barangay Chumang. One morning, I, along with my media companions, Tourism Promotions Board, and Shroff Travel, set off on a 5–6km ride up to an overlooking Khohang Garden and Viewpoint for a picnic breakfast. The garden serves as a gateway to the falls concealed within the lush forest of Mayoyao.
The Ifugao Province is blessed with a culturally rich landscape, boasting five clusters of rice terraces inscribed under the UNESCO World Heritage list since 1995 as Living Cultural Landscapes. These include the Batad and Baangaan Terraces in Banaue, the Mayoyao Rice Terraces, the Hungduan Rice Terraces, and the Nagacadan Rice Terraces in Kiangan. Among these, the Mayoyao Rice Terraces stand out for their exceptional preservation, owing to their remote location, resulting in minimal tourist activity and thus, reduced environmental impact. My long-awaited journey to Mayoyao was made possible thanks to the Tourism Promotions Board, as we joined their Community-Based Tourism workshops in Mayoyao.
The fertile lands surrounding Mt. Apo, the highest peak in the Philippines, owe their richness to the volcanic activity that has shaped the region over the years. Farmers and entrepreneurs in the vicinity of the volcano have harnessed the benefits of this nutrient-rich environment, cultivating a diverse range of crops such as fruits, vegetables, and grains. The emergence of farms catering to tourists like Humbled by Nature, Balutakay Coffee Farms, Lao Integrated Farms, and The Berries Farm Cabin signals Davao del Sur’s rise as a promising destination for farm tourism in the country.
Nestled at the foothills of the mighty Mt. Apo, the highest mountain in the Philippines, the Bagobo ethnic group thrives. During our journey to Davao del Sur, we had the privilege of immersing ourselves in the culture of the Bagobo-Tagabawa, also known as the “People of the South.” This subgroup, residing in villages like Tibolo and Bansalan, provided us with a glimpse into their rich heritage, with a special focus on the Bagobo-Tagabawa Cultural Village and the legacy of Salinta Monon.
At the heart of our visit to the Caraga municipality is the Community-Based Tourism (CBT) project by the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), in collaboration with the Mandaya Ethnic Group in the uplands ancestral domain of Sangab, Caraga, Davao Oriental. While exploring Caraga to showcase its natural wonders and attractions, a portion of our group is actively involved with the Mandayas, implementing a “Marketing Enhancement Program” and providing essential “starter-kits” (threads, beads, cotton, etc.), as well as equipment such as sewing machines and back-strap weaving looms.
Have you ever envisioned being among the privileged few to witness the inaugural light of a new day in your country? Nestled in the easternmost reaches of the Philippines, the municipality of Caraga offers a unique opportunity for such an experience. Here, dawn breaks a little earlier than usual, casting its warm glow on a collection of pristine beaches that fringe the expansive Pacific Ocean. What better way to embrace the dawn than by immersing yourself in the tranquil beauty of these five beaches in Caraga?
The prospect of waking up at 3:00 am for a 4:00 am hike back to the Lake Holon Receiving Area might seem improbable, but a midday event at Lake Sebu necessitated our prompt departure from this enchanting crater lake. Venturing back through the Salacafe trail – the easier yet longer 9km route – we commenced our journey, putting in the effort to tackle the continuous ascent from the base camp. By 5 am, we reached Salacafe Viewdeck, where the morning sky painted the landscape in captivating hues. Recognizing the opportune moment, I launched my drone, capturing the sublime beauty of Lake Holon at this early hour.