How to Get to Sagada from Manila via Banaue
Sagada is more popularly accessed via Baguio City but let me tell you about an alternative route from Manila: via Banaue.
It is good to take this route especially if you are planning to take in the majesty of Banaue Rice Terraces in Ifugao povince, whether from a view point en route to Sagada or if you are planning to stay for a day or two to explore the place.
And let me tell you at this point that shopping for furniture and wood carvings in Banaue is fantastic, so you may want to think about staying a little longer.
Many folks, especially those bringing their cars, take the Manila-Baguio-Sagada-Banaue-Manila route or do the reverse, going up via Banaue and down via the City of Pines.
The good news is, although travel time is pretty long, passing through the Philippines countryside is a lovely learning experience and a pretty relaxing ride.
This section will deal with the tricky aspect of getting to Sagada from Manila via Banaue. Tricky because there are limited rides from place to place. But all-in-all, it's a pretty cheap vacation and great for backpackers and adventure travelers.
First, let me give you an idea of the locations of Baguio, Sagada and Banaue in relation to each other and Manila.
Baguio (located within Benguet province) is on the northwestern side of Luzon while Banaue, Ifugao is accessible via travel on the northeastern side of Luzon and Sagada, is in between. All three places are north of Manila.
Thus one can access Sagada both from the east (Banaue, Ifugao) and the west (Baguio/Benguet). Each route will entail more or less the same combined travel time.
Step 1. Manila to Banaue
There are daily bus trips from Manila to Banaue that leave at 10:00 p.m., with tickets costing a reasonable Php600 per person. The transit companies plying this route are Autobus and Dangwa Tranco, and both have terminals in Sampaloc, Manila.
The trip from Manila to Banaue lasts nine (9) hours with regular stops along the way for meals and personal necessities. The schedule is designed so that one sleeps through most of the trip, arriving in Banaue just in time to catch the jeepney to Sagada.
The bus makes regular stops every 2 hours for meals, snacks and personal necessities. Since it is a long trip, these would be good occasions to stretch your legs.
Since there 's nothing much one can see at night, this is a good time to get some rest as the journey from Manila to Sagada is pretty long, if you're not stopping over to stay in Banaue. Make sure to bring a blanket or some light covering that you can fold away, like a shawl to keep you warm and comfy.
Arrival in Banaue is at around 7:00 a.m. and it is suggested that if you are planning to return to Manila through Banaue and not Baguio, purchase a return ticket as soon as you get off at the terminal.
Step 2. Banaue to Sagada
At the Banaue bus terminal there are jeepneys, and sometimes mini-buses or vans, waiting to take passengers to Sagada. The jeepney ride costs about Php250 per person, and it takes another 3 to 4 hours to get to Sagada.
The jeepneys will only go to Sagada when there are at least four (4) passengers. Should you be traveling in a small group, you can hire it exclusively, but it will always be nice to share the ride others to save on costs.
The jeepney will usually make two stops: at a highway restaurant for meals and a Banaue Rice Terraces view point that you will not want to miss. This will be a wonderful opportunity to have your photo taken with some Ifugao natives in their traditional dress. To do this, one must obtain their permission first, and please know that it is customary to leave a Php20.00 tip per person for this purpose.
Should you leave Banaue at 8:00 you will get arrive in Sagada at around noontime, which is perfect for a quick lunch before checking in into your hotel.
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Alternatively, from Banaue, one can ride the lone jeepney that heads for Bontoc, the capital of Mountain Province. These can be found at the public market in Banaue and you can get to the market via tricycle. Make sure to get there before 9:00 a.m, so you don't miss it.
And from Bontoc you can take another jeepney to Sagada, which takes about 1.5 hours.
- How to get to Sagada by private transport
A Comparison of Both Ways of Getting to Sagada from Manila by Public Transport:*
A. Via Baguio: Travel Time / Costs
Manila to Baguio = 7 hours max (Php450)
Baguio to Sagada = 6 hours (Php350)
Total = 13 hours & Php800
B. Via Banaue: Travel Time / Costs
Manila to Banaue = 9 hours (Php600)
Banaue to Sagada = 4 hours (Php300)
Total = 13 hours & Php900
* It must be noted that there are more trip schedules for the first option. These estimates are for one-way trips, with connecting rides.
Here is the contact information of the bus companies plying the Manila-Banaue Route
1. DANGWA, 1600 Dimasalang, Sampaloc, Manila; Telephone: (632) 731 - 2879
2. AUTOBUS, 1455 Loyola St. corner F. Cayco St., Sampaloc, Manila; Telephone: (632) 493 - 4111
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