Benguet

The province of Benguet is indeed blessed with natural resources, deeming it worthy of the moniker “Salad Bowl of the Philippines.” Its topography also makes mining a booming industry here.  And with Baguio City leading tourism in this region, Benguet is really abuzz with progress.

To get to Benguet from Manila, you can drive through what locals call the Zigzag Road or Kennon Road – a path that winds for several kilometers. When you’re near Baguio and Benguet, watch out for the famous stone carving of a lion’s head. Its size will take you by surprise.

For your adventurer spirit, try Mt. Pulag. A National Park, it’s 2,922 meters above sea level and is the highest peak in Luzon. Challenge yourself with the Akiki Trail. Along it, you might find the timid cloud rat – furry like a rabbit and as cute as a chipmunk. Four species are endemic to the area.

Then, Mt. Pulag is just one mountain out of many. Equally exhilarating is Mount Kabunian; Mount Sto. Tomas; and Mount Ugo, the home of the Kalanguya ethnic group and the venue of popular sky-running marathons.

Head to Kabayan for an unusual trip where you’ll learn about mummies. A National Cultural Treasure, the mummies of Kabayan are the most intact mummies found in the country, and one of the best preserved in the world. The Ibalois mummified their heavily tattooed leaders and chieftains, like Apu Anno, the warrior hunter who died 500 years ago. You will find him in Natubleng, Bugiuas. Several other mummies are found in Timbac Cave and the three-storey Tinongchol Burial Rock.