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Hiking The Famous Rice Terraces Of Batad And Banaue

The famous rice terraces of Batad in the Ifugao province were one of the most impressive sights I've seen during our 5 month trip around the world

Found on Luzon in the Ifugao mountains these ingenious rice terraces are sometimes called the eighth wonder of the world and rightfully so!

The terraces are believed to be over 2000 years old and a UNESCO world heritage site. It's astonishing that the Ifugaos have been able to build them without any (modern) equipment.

The best way to truly admire the Batad rice terraces is by going on a multi-day hike. Read everything you need to know about hiking the rice terraces of Batad in this post!

Hiking the rice terraces of Batad: the ultimate guide

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How to get to the rice terraces of Batad?

These ancient rice terraces are located in northern Luzon and the easiest way to get there is by night bus. There are daily night buses from Manila to Banaue, we booked a trip with Ohayami, this bus leaves at 9 pm. 

I recommend taking a cab to the Ohayami bus terminal, the address is Cor. Fajardo St., Lacson Ave, Sampaloc (Manila).

Batad rice terraces

Must-have items on the bus to Banaue

  • Warm clothes because of the freezing air-conditioning (like a warm hoodie or down jacket)
  • Earplugs and eye mask
  • A lot of patience and being ok with not sleeping much that night since you are sitting straight up and the mountain roads are very bumpy and not in great condition. But hey, that’s travel;-).

The drive to Banaue takes approximately nine hours and we stopped three times along the way, sometimes near a public toilet, sometimes not…

We arrived at the Banaue bus station early in the morning. Everybody got off the bus and was shuffled into jeepneys.

Our jeepney took us to Uyami’s Green View Restaurant where we had breakfast and arranged our hiking tour.

How to organize a hiking tour in Banaue?

Arranging a Batad hiking tour is very straightforward. While you can book a hiking tour online before arriving in Banaue town, we choose not to do this (we wanted to be flexible about our hiking dates).

Instead, we there arranged our tour immediately after arriving in Banaue by night bus. We teamed up with 4 other travelers (who ended up being really good friends) and created our own hiking group.

In the restaurant there were many guides offering their services, you can discuss your preferences with them and create a customized hiking tour.

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How much does a 3-day hike to the rice terraces of Banaue, Cambulo, and Batad cost?

Prices are always a little tricky in Southeast Asia as they usually depend on your negotiation skills. We did not shop around in Banaue trying to find the cheapest tour, but we did do a bit of bargaining.

Ultimately we paid 2120php (€36/$40) per person, and our small group consisted of 6 people.

What was included in this price?

  • The wage of our friendly guide Lancer.
  • Accommodation (2 nights).
  • Storage for our backpacks at a hostel in Banaue.
  • Transport from Uyami’s Greenview Lodge & Restaurant to the starting point of the hike.
  • Transport from the endpoint of the hike to Uyami’s Green View Restaurant.
  • Transport from Uyami’s Green View Restaurant to Ohayami night bus terminal. Read more about our journey from Manila to Banaue in this post.


  • Food and drinks during the hike.
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Where to sleep during a multi-day hike through the rice terraces of Batad?

During the hike, you will stay at small local guest houses. To give you a good idea of what to expect when you are going to hike in Banaue: accommodation is (very) basic.


During our first night in the small village of Cambulo, there was no shower and only one small toilet with a bucket.

Nevertheless, the bed was clean and I slept like a baby because I was completely exhausted after hiking for 6 hours and not sleeping much on the bus from Manila to Banaue. 

I have thoroughly searched the web, but could not find our Cambulo accommodation online (not surprising, it was a tiny village and a very small guesthouse).


In Batad village we stayed at the Hillside Inn. This accommodation had a hot shower which was shared with two other rooms.

The bed was very firm but clean and the view from the balcony was breathtaking. Click here for the latest prices.

Where to eat during a hike through the rice terraces of Batad?

You eat at your accommodation, usually, food and drinks are not included in the tour price. But with 70php (€1,20/$1,35) for a delicious chocolate banana pancake, that's definitely not a problem.

Not only are the people hosting you very generous, but the food they provide is also (generally) very tasty and it's a nice way to support the local community.

That being said, it's important to prepare well for your track and buy enough water and snacks before you leave Banaue.

There is little to nothing available along the trail because everything has to be brought in on foot.

Though you can buy new bottled water at the guesthouses, it's better to bring your own water filter bottleSteriPen, or chloride pills to minimize plastic waste.

What to pack for a 3-day hike through the rice terraces of Batad?

Packing List For A RTW Trip - what to pack for a long term trip - packing for unlimited travel

I selected my gear for our 3-day hike very carefully and only brought the essentials to make everything fit into my day pack.

We stored our big backpacks in a hostel in Banaue (in a locked room completely filled with bags).

I never worried about stuff getting stolen but I'm not overly attached to stuff so if you have any items you cannot stand losing you may want to bring those with you.

And of course, it's always important to take out good travel insurance that will cover theft.

Banaue and Batad 3-day hike schedule

Program 3 day hike Banaue

Day 1: Banaue to Cambulo

We arrived in Banaue by night bus at approximately 6 o'clock. It took us a couple of hours to have breakfast, arrange a group tour, buy food and drinks for the trail, and get to the start of the trek.

We started hiking at around 11 am and arrived at our accommodation in the remote village of Cambulo at around 6 pm.

Day 2: Cambulo to Batad (via Tappiya Falls)

The next day we left at 9 am and hiked to the Tappiya waterfalls. After a dip into the water and lunch, we hiked to the village of Batad where we spent the rest of the afternoon.

Day 3: Batad to Banaue

Again we left around 9 am and hiked for about 3 hours to the end of the trail where a jeepney picked us up and drove back to the town of Banaue.

We spent the rest of the day in Banaue and got on the night bus back to Manila at 6:30 pm.

The beautiful rice terraces in Banaue

Banaue and Batad hiking map

Below you can find a map with the places mentioned in the post. We trekked with a local guide and the track through the terraces is quite difficult to find on your own, I recommend you book a tour.

It's not expensive and you will learn a lot about the history and customs of the local people from your guide.

Banaue rice terraces map - Philippines

Click here for the interactive map

Our 3-day Batad hiking experience

Hiking the rice terraces of Banaue and Batad: day 1

It’s early in the morning and I am still a little dazed from not getting much sleep during the long ride on the night bus from Manila to Banaue.

Breakfast and coffee at Uyami's Green View Restaurant woke me up and after some bargaining with the tour agents, we arrange our three-day hike.

After a short ride in a jeepney up the winding road, we arrived at the famous Banaue rice terraces viewpoint. After taking a couple of pictures we get back into the jeepney which drives us to the starting point of the hike.

Our guide tells us about today's hike and our destination of the day. We will walk for about 20 km to the Cambulo. The only way to reach this little village is on foot!

Hiking Banaue

The path is slippery in some places, so I fall down in the mud every now and then (like everyone in the group except our guide, who is walking in flip-flops and doesn’t seem bothered by the mud in the slightest).

The first part of the hike goes through the jungle, with so many plants and trees I have never seen before! So green! So quiet and remote!

The second part of the hike goes through the rice paddies. This trail goes over very narrow ridges and I am being careful not to fall into a rice paddy, or worse, fall off the edge!

Amazing that these terraces are so old (they say over 2000 years!). it’s such an inventive system, with the irrigation canals flowing from the top all the way down to the lowest terraces. Really clever!

Rice terrace irrigation

We pass through a village and learn from our guide it's only for a couple of months this village has electrical power!

Before the power line was extended to the village, the locals relied completely on solar power! After seven hours of hiking, we arrive in Cambulo, in a basic but clean guesthouse.

I am completely exhausted from the long hike and all the impressions of the day (and probably also from not sleeping the night before).

Barely being able to keep my eyes open I manage to clean up a bit with a bucket of water (no showers here;-) and chew down some food before falling asleep for 12 hours straight.

Hiking the rice terraces of Banaue and Batad: day 2

At 9 am sharp we take off for our second day of hiking and I am feeling completely rested and refreshed (cough…muscle ache…cough).

We visited Cambulo Elementary school (many of the children have to walk for over an hour to get there!) and talk to the teachers.

If you pay a visit to the school of Cambulo, be sure to make a donation. The money will be put to good use!

Cambulo elementary school

We continue along a trail zigzagging through the rice terraces that I surely wouldn’t have found without our guide.

It is a wonderful track, each view is more stunning than the last, and the sky is a magnificent blue color.

The jungle is all shades of green, the mountains surrounding us are impressive and I am thoroughly enjoying the moment.

View hiking Banaue

After two hours of hiking, we arrive at a ridge and get to behold yet another beautiful view: the rice terraces of Batad!

These terraces are the most famous ones in the region because the village center of Batad is located in the middle of the rice fields.

rice terraces batad

But before descending to Batad, we take a ‘small' detour down some alarmingly steep stairs to a beautiful waterfall. Sticky and sweaty, we all dive in immediately. The water is cold but so refreshing!

Hiking The Rice Terraces Of Banaue And Batad In The Philippines

A perfect place to picnic and eat our delicious lunch made by the guesthouse we slept last night. With renewed energy, we hike back up the steep stairs…

And down the other side…

And up again to our guesthouse…

When we arrive, I fall into a chair and don’t get up until I drag myself to bed and fall asleep within seconds.

Hiking the rice terraces of Banaue and Batad: day 3

The next morning I feel muscles I didn’t know I had, but I don’t care, it’s totally worth it! Another three hours of hiking later we arrive at a road. I am a little shocked.

Are we back already? I'm a little sad as I climb up on the roof of the jeepney because I am not sure if I’ll ever get to go back to this wonderful place…

Hiking Batad

Hike the rice terraces of Batad: in conclusion

Hiking through the rice terraces was a huge highlight for me because I had never seen rice terraces before.

I had never seen rice fields at all in my life, let alone one of the most famous in the world! It was an incredible experience to be so removed from civilization and get back to basics.

No phone signal, showers, or other luxuries. Only stunning nature to explore, enjoy and experience…

Download all the information (including a packing list) about hiking in Banaue and Batad below.

If you want to read more about traveling the Philippines, also check my Philippines itinerary, budget post, El Nido guide, and my post about scuba diving in El Nido.

This post was updated in February 2023.


Monday 18th of October 2021

Thank you for sharing this post. Hiking in Banaue looks like a great experience. I wanna try it too soon. Hiking is therapeutic!


Thursday 21st of October 2021

Hi Carl,

Thank you for your kind words and I agree, hiking is very therapeutic:-)

Happy travels, Lotte


Friday 30th of November 2018

Hi There, Just to thank you for this post. I just got back from Batad, and trekked on my own. While I did not use any trekking tour, I found your experience pretty interesting and useful. Please keep going on. ++


Wednesday 5th of December 2018

Hi Idrisse,

Happy to hear that! I hope you had a nice time in Batad:-)


Ioana Enany

Saturday 8th of September 2018

Hi Lotte,

How did you book the 3 day hike to the Banaue Rice terraces? Did you book it in advance of your arrival in Banaue?

Many thanks, Ioana


Wednesday 19th of September 2018

Dear Ioana,

We arranged the 3 day hiking tour (including the guide and accommodation) when we arrived in Banaue with the night bus. If you travel from Manila to Banaue by night bus there will be plenty other travelers around, so talk to people on the bus and find out about their (and your) travel plans to see if they overlap. When you arrive in Banaue you can find a guide together with people who also want to go hiking and split the costs (for the guide, jeepney, etc). You can also find hiking packages online which you can book in advance but I don’t have any personal experience with any of those.

Enjoy your trip! Lotte


Tuesday 10th of April 2018

Do you remember the name of the group with whom you booked the hike tour?


Wednesday 11th of April 2018

Hi Jojo, I'm sorry but I don't remember the name of the company. But you can easily arrange a tour once you have arrived in Banaue. If you travel there by night bus there will be many fellow backpackers around, I recommend talking to them to ask if they are also interested in doing a hiking tour and try to find one together. Enjoy your trip!


Sunday 5th of November 2017

That is a very cool trip. I would love to do something similar. Do you remember the name of the place where you stayed in Cambulo? Many thanks, Howard


Monday 6th of November 2017

Hi Howard,

Thanks, it was an amazing experience! The place in Cambulo didn't have an official name and can't be found on internet. But when you book a hike in Banaue the guides will arrange accommodation along the trek.

Enjoy! Lotte