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After visiting the Batad Rice Terraces and a van ride from Banaue, Ifugao we stopped by in Bontoc, Mountain Province to have lunch. After dining, Bibang said that she wanted to show me and Maki something but she told us to blindfold ourselves first.
At first I thought she was kidding but she was serious. But even if she was kidding Maki and I were both game for blindfolded adventures to make our trip really interesting.
While hoping that a rabid dog would not intersect with our path and Bibang, the girl we entrusted our lives with, would not leave us in the middle of the road, we crossed streets, stepped up a gutter, walked on inclined sidewalks and climbed stairs until Filipinos and foreigners talking. And when she finally commanded us to remove our blindfold what I saw was amazing. I’ve never ever have seen anything like it in my life. Everything was just blurred!!!
After a few minutes of getting my eyes adjust I find myself inside a museum full of pictures and relics with a desk in front of me and the lady at the other end of the table was asking us for our entrance fee. I wished Bibang would have paid for the entrance fee because she needs to pay for what she did but since I enjoyed being in a state of temporary blindness I paid for my entrance fee. (50 Pesos/person when we visited last May 2011 but when I went there when I visited Hungduan, Ifugao it was now 60 Pesos/person)
We were inside The Bontoc Museum. A museum which I found out more about the Cordilleran heritage, their daily lives and how they interact with each other. Unfortunately, I could not take pictures inside. I wanted to show you, my readers, the pictures of bridges they made using big tree trunks, how Bontoc looked decades ago, the head hunters and many more.
Fortunately, it was only the first section of The Bontoc Museum. The next section was the Outdoor Museum section. A section of the museum where picture taking is allowed.
There were tools and structures in the area even a pig pen with a real live native pig. Here’s a couple of pictures of the Outdoor Museum section.
Is the museum worth a visit?
YES! There were a lot of pictures there where I learned many of the history of Ifugao and Mountain Province. When I saw the different pictures all I could say to myself is “I wish I was there.”
When I went again to Sagada to buy my mother coffee I rode a jeep from Banaue that was supposed to only go to Bontoc, but since the jeep was full of passengers that were headed for Sagada they offered everyone that they would go straight to Sagada and most of the passengers said yes. I subtly told the people that their offer was expensive (100 Pesos/person more) and they would miss The Bontoc Museum.
If you go down at Bontoc, pay the 60 Pesos entrance fee and ride the public jeepneys to Sagada (50 Pesos/person) you would have still saved 40 Pesos plus you learned something and went around a little in Bontoc too. If that is not enough you’ll get to eat Walter Rice in the canteen in front of the jeep going to Sagada.
The Bontoc Museum Details
Monday to Saturday: 8AM to 12NN, 1PM to 5PM
Sunday: 8AM to 12NN, 1PM to 3:30PM
From Sagada, Mountain Province
- Ride a public jeep going to Bontoc. Go down at their station or tell the driver to drop you at the nearest place he can to The Bontoc Museum.
- From there it is just walking distance. Walk and ask directions from the locals. Estimated Time of Walking (ETW) is less than 5 minutes.
From Banaue, Ifugao
- Ride a jeep/bus going to Bontoc. Tell the driver to drop you off at the jeepneys going to Sagada or the market. More details on the schedule of the jeeps and buses at my post How to get to Sagada.
- Ask around on how to get to The Bontoc Museum then walk to the museum. ETW is less than 5 minutes.
Just back-track the way you went to the museum.
- Their brochure can be bought for 10 Pesos/piece.
- They have a special section where they feature different art pieces like on my first visit an exhibit entitled “Common Threads” was being presented by the School of Design & Arts of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde Manila and LASALLE College of Arts Singapore.
- Since Bontoc is a town there are stores near the vicinity of the museum. There are also eateries located when you look hard enough.
- Some rules when in the museum vicinity.