The town of Bontoc

The small town of Bontoc, Mountain Province

I’ve finanlly got a chance to drop by and explore this little town called Bontoc. Most of the time, it’s just one of those areas you only pass by either going to Sagada or Banaue. But it would seem that Bontoc is also an ideal point to jump off any trip going to the different parts of Mountain Province. If you are coming from Manila, you can ride on the new Cable Bus located in Trinity College and they head straight to Bontoc. From there,many jeeps plying to different directions like Banaue, Sagada and Besao can be found. Since Bontoc is in the middle, travel time is reduced.

Tatooed Women

Tatooed Women. A dying art form

Aside from the connection with different areas, it’s interesting to see our tribes people walking down these streets. Elders, still wearing traditional garbs and women with full body tatoos. Those tatoos are said to be a dying art form since modern women doesn’t like to put them anymore due to the painful process. These Tatoos for women are considered decorations, like jewels, for men however, tatoos are a badge of honor, it means they have slayed or killed an enemy during a war.

A Church in Bontoc

A church in Bontoc.

Bontoc is also a developing and clean town. New structures are being built, and there are a number of Inns if you decided to look around and see more of the town. A number of souvenier shops on the streets and there’s an ATM (from PNB) here if you find yourself running out of money in the midst of your trip.

Bontoc Museum

Never miss the Bontoc Museum.

And NEVER miss going to the Bontoc Museum if you’re in town. Our companion M, who has been around most of the museums around the country said this is one of the best Museums here. Aside from the antiquities from different tribes inside the museum, there’s the outside museum which emulates the cultural houses and community setup of the Mountain Province tribes. So don’t fail to check this one out.

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Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.

21 Responses to “SideTrip: Bontoc, the Mountain Province connection”

  1. as far as i remember,i´ve asked my late grand ma why they have tattoos in their arms up to their fingers and its all the same style…and she said, ¨its our tradition before,when girls reach puberty, they get tatooed..its a symbol of womanhood¨.

  2. tattoos among women is really a symbol of womanhood in Cordillera provinces. their more in Bontoc that must seen and those who loves river rafting try Bontoc Chico River you’ll like the adventure.

  3. Ben Whitford

    meron ba dyan ng tattoo artist? gusto ko ung tribal tattoo pero gusto ko talaga ung traditional method, ung babatok talaga. meron ganyan dyan? salamat

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