DATE OF TRAVEL: March 02, 2007
WHY YOU SHOULD GO:
1) Because it is considered as the 8th wonder of the world.
2) Because it really is a stairway to heaven. Legend has it that Kabunyan/ Lumaig, an Ifugao God, used these steps to visit his people on earth.
3) Because it is amazing how the Ifugaos actually built this. It is not only beautiful but scientifically sound (and advanced!) as well. The Rice Terraces were built to maximize farm space and prevent erosion. Moreover, the Ifugao people did this for themselves and not as a product of slave labor!:)
4) Because unlike many "world wonders", the Rice Terraces is still in use according to its original function.
It is slowly degrading and the younger generation no longer want to farm (some say it's because there's no money there so as soon as they find work, they leave). Instead, they want to become tour guides because of the tourist influx in their area. What they overlook is that when no one does the farming anymore and the rice terraces continue to die, they will lose the "8th wonder of the world" –and the tourists along with it.
Banaue Rice Terraces is usually claimed as the eighth wonder of the world, or one of them at least. These terraces were carved by the Ifugao people some 2,000-3,000 years ago without the help of any machinery. In 1995, the Rice Terraces was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Banaue Rice Terraces look like stepping stones to the sky, thus, it is also called the Stairway to Heaven. It is said that Kabunyan or Lumaig, an Ifugao God, used these steps to visit his people on Earth. The terraces reach an altitude of about 1,500 meters or 4,920 feet. Given this and the time when it was made, then add the fact that no machinery helped the Ifugao people build this at all, no wonder it is considered as one of mankind's greatest display of engineering skills! There are many rice terraces all over Asia but nothing beats this. It is even said that if the terraces were laid horizontally instead, they would stretch halfway around the world!
HOW TO GET THERE: (commute from Manila)
Take Florida Lines or Auto Bus which leave at around 10:00pm daily. For schedule and contact numbers, kindly click on this.
If you decide to view the terraces on your own (ex: from NFA-Aguian View Deck), viewing is free. However, you can also take hiking trails and tour guide usually costs about P200-250.