Batad admittedly is a place that anyone can definitely love, I would not be surprised that tourists come back for more. Batad is peaceful, no overcrowded markets, no loud music, only rough and muddy roads, a fascinating place that will make you fall in love with nature. Here is an ultimate travel guide and smart travel tips that you need to know before heading to Batad.
Batad isn’t the easiest place to get to because it requires patience and effort. Let me tell you that getting to Batad itself is a rewarding experience. Here’s the list of practical tips one must know when visiting Batad province in no particular order:
1. Hiking towards the highest point area of the rice terraces is an amazing experience.
2. Trekking down is more enjoyable than trekking up the hill.
3. Visit the secluded part of Batad rice terraces, the Tappiya Falls cascading into a natural swimming pool.
4. Get up close the amphitheater-shaped rice terraces of Batad.
5. Hire a good local guide.
6. Let me tell you when I say trekking, it’s a serious hiking there, under the heat of the sun.
7. Check out the traditional Ifugao houses.
8. Know the locals way of life.
9. Hike to the remote villages of Batad.
10. Visit the Bangaan Rice Terraces.
11. Take your lunch at Simon’s place or Rita’s place.
12. Local guides are up for grabs.
13. Locals are extremely friendly.
14. Kids here loves to be photographed.
15. During the trek from and to Batad, there are some stop over destinations where one can rest.
16. Locals set up stores selling snacks and refreshments.
17. Buy a local craft.
18. Feel the fresh air.
19. For first timers the roads are not paved, sometimes muddy wet and mossy during rainy season.
20. Try the top-loading experience.
21. Must try is the Halo-halo de Batad courtesy of Simon’s Inn.
22. Pack light which is just enough for your clothes and other important things.
23. Pose with a wood carving Rice Gods.
24. Take a glimpse of The Batad Kadangyan Lodges Project, a complex of several native huts located at Sitio Balihong.
25. Stay in Batad for one night. Recommended lodge is Simon’s Inn as they have great views of the rice terraces.
26. Sleep in an Ifugao hut.
27. Another recommended lodge is Ramon’s home stay
28. You can request Kuya Ramon to cook meals for you.
29. Learn how to prepare local rice wines.
30. Try their pinikpikan.
31. One can take a public transportation to Batad saddle point and hire a local guide in Batad.
31. Join organized travel group like Trailadventours.com
32. Take a stroll along the UNESCO World heritage site.
33. Eat local food in a few small, family lead restaurants.
34. Try the food at the Sanafe Lodge in Banaue.
35. Make sure you have money before you reach Banaue, there is only one ATM in town and may not always work.
36. Some of the rice terraces are currently being repaired due to natural disaster but still stunning.
37. Batad is very remote and the food is expensive. You will soon find out why.
38. Try the cheese omelet for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
39. Bring the usual supplies of water, medicine, flashlights, batteries and other important things.
40. The best time to visit Batad is during the summer months of April and May when the rice is set for harvest and at its greenest.
41. There are maps available to guide you around the region but it is still recommended to hire a local guide.
42. The bus ride going to Batad is very long so one may consider hiring a private car to get you there.
43. Take a glimpse of small farming communities on the way to Bangaan from Batad.
44. No mobile phone signal.
45. No running hot water.
46. There are several photo opportunities in Batad and in Banaue.
47. Taking the ride from Banaue to Batad is an adventure in itself.
48. There are several narrow steps along the way.
49. Bring a comfortable footwear.
50. Try their organic red rice and a hot chicken stew with beans with sweet potatoes.
51. Try their organic coffee.
52. [Did you know that] Ifugaos do not use nails to build their houses and impressively can withstand natural disasters.
53. The sad part here is that these Ifugao huts and its construction are now in the process of extinction and is slowly becoming a lost tradition as local communities embrace urban settlements.
54. Try their local chewing gum [nga-nga].
55. Find the milky way in Batad.
56. Try their delicious pudding made out of sticky rice and sweet potatoes.
57. Be a Batad Weekend Warrior.
58. The most photogenic rice terraces in the Philippines.
There are plenty of rice terraces in the province of Ifugao and in Banaue. However, the most breath-taking and perhaps the most isolated of all can be found at the village of Batad.