How To Get There
The Banaue rice terraces are located in the mountainous north central region of Luzon island on very good roads all the way from Manila to Banaue if you take the Eastern Highway. While Banaue is only 350 Km from Manila, this drive takes about nine hours because it’s a two-lane highway with many switchbacks in the mountains. Caution! Do not confuse this route with the Baguio route. The Central Cordillera mountains divide north Luzon Island with Baguio, Sagada, and Bontoc on the west side of that mountain chain while Banaue is on the east side. If your primary destination is Banaue then you should take the eastern highway from Manila, via San Jose. That’s about a nine-hour trip; if you go to Banaue via Baguio it will be about 17 hours.
Air travel to Banaue is just not a viable option because neither Banaue nor any nearby city has an airport with commercial service. The nearest airport is in Cauayan, Isabela served by Cebu Pacific Air. To reach Banaue from Cauayan you would have to take a three-hour bus or van ride south to Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya and then you’d have to ride a jeepney or bus going to Banaue at the Bagabag Junction. All the buses that travel the Baguio-Banaue route (Ohayami and KMS Lines) pass through this point as well so you could wait for one, although they are not as frequent as jeepneys. Bagabag-Banaue travel time is about 2 1/2 hours.
Manila – Banaue, Night Buses
There are nightly bus service directly to Banaue from the University of Saint Thomas / Sampaloc area of Manila. Return service from Banaue back to Manila are also at night, your arrival in Manila will be about 4 AM – 5AM.
Manila – Banaue, Day Buses
If you are a person who simply cannot sleep on buses or for other reasons prefers to travel in the daytime, it can be done. G.V. Florida Transport, Inc. offers day service with departures to Bagabag Junction (Nueva Vizcaya province) from both their Sampaloc and Cubao terminals. Victory Liner does as well from their Kamias/Cubao terminal (note that Victory has two terminals in the Cubao area; you need the one at Kamias, opposite the GMA TV Studios). Other bus companies, Baliwag Transit, and others) in the Cubao area of Metro Manila have many departures daily to Tuguegarao in Cagayan provinc. At the junction there are frequent jeepneys to Banaue. All the buses that travel the Baguio-Banaue route (Ohayami and KMS Lines) pass through this point as well so you could wait for one, although they are not as frequent as jeepneys. Manila-Bagabag travel takes 6-7 hours. Bagabag-Banaue travel time is about 2 1/2 hours.
Manila – Banaue
- Ohayami Trans (Accepts online reservation 2 days before date of trip)
Terminal: A.H. Lacson Avenue corner Fajardo Street, Sampaloc, Manila 1008
Telephone: +632 516-0501 / +63 927-649-3055
Baguio – Banaue
- Ohayami Trans (Accepts online reservation (2 days before date of trip)
Terminal: Otek Street, Burnham Park, Baguio City (Beside Chowking)
Telephone: +63 916-600-9333Website: ohayamitrans.com
- KMS Lines
Terminal: 64 Otek Street, Baguio City, Benguet
Telephone: +63 72 304-3113
Clark International Airport, Angeles City, Day Buses
If you arrive in the Philippines via Clark instead of Manila, you can easily take a Victory Liner bus from the Dau terminal with several departures daily beginning at 8:20 AM (look for buses going to Tuguegarao as the final destination). Buy ticket to Bagabag Junction and then at the intersection you can take the next available jeepney or bus to Banaue. If you take the first daily bus you should arrive at Bagabag by 4 PM and Banaue by 6PM. Remember however that these buses originate in Manila and already have passengers on board. On heavy traffic days like weekends and holidays the bus may not have seats available when it reaches Dau Terminal. If demand for seats is heavy the Victory Liner dispatcher will make a list of those waiting for the Tuguegarao bus; when it arrives he will board those on the list in order of entry. On arrival at the terminal be sure to ask the dispatcher to add your name to the list.
NOTE: If you’re new to bus travel in this country, we advise you to always carry a jacket or sweater. Filipino bus drivers really love to keep the aircon on its coldest setting!