From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the Philippine province. For other uses, see Ifugao (disambiguation).
The Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Flag of Ifugao
Official seal of Ifugao
Map of the Philippines with Ifugao highlighted
Map of the Philippines with Ifugao highlighted
Coordinates: 16°50′N 121°10′E / 16.833°N 121.167°E / 16.833; 121.167Coordinates: 16°50′N 121°10′E / 16.833°N 121.167°E / 16.833; 121.167
Country Philippines
Region Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR)
Founded June 18, 1966
Capital Lagawe
 • Type Province of the Philippines
 • Governor Denis Habawel (Independent)
 • Vice Governor Pedro Mayam-o (LP)
 • Total 2,628.21 km2 (1,014.76 sq mi)
Area rank 51st out of 81
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 191,078
 • Rank 72nd out of 81
 • Density 73/km2 (190/sq mi)
 • Density rank 74th out of 81
 • Independent cities 0
 • Component cities 0
 • Municipalities 11
 • Barangays 175
 • Districts Lone district of Ifugao
Time zone PHT (UTC+8)
ZIP code 3600 to 3610
Dialing code 74
ISO 3166 code PH-IFU
Spoken languages Ifugao, Tuwali, Ayangan, Kalanguya, Ilocano, Tagalog, English

Ifugao is a landlocked province of the Philippines in the Cordillera Administrative Region in Luzon. Covering a total land area of 2,628.2 km², the province of Ifugao is located in a mountainous region characterized by rugged terrain, river valleys, and massive forests. Its capital is Lagawe and borders Benguet to the west, Mountain Province to the north, Isabela to the east, and Nueva Vizcaya to the south.

It is named after the term "i-pugo" which means "i" (from/people) and "pugo" (hill), thus it means people of the hill.

The Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras and Banaue Rice Terraces are the main tourist attractions in the province. These 2000-year-old terraces were carved into the mountains, without the aid of machinery, they used their "bare" hands to provide level steps where the natives can plant rice. In 1995, they were declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


During Spanish occupation, government was established in Kiangan. The Spanish occupation ended with the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution. Ifugao used to be part of the former Mountain Province prior to its split into four separate and independent provinces. In 1905, Ifugao was made a sub-province of the old Mountain Province. Captain Pedro Bulan became the first native to become the first provincial governor.

Ifugao became the center of warfare in the last year of World War II when Gen. Yamashita launched his last stand against the American and Philippine Commonwealth forces at Mount Napulawan. He informally surrendered to Captain Grisham of the 6th US Army in the Philippines based in Kiangan, Ifugao, before he was flown to Camp John Hay where he formally surrendered.



Ifugao is subdivided into 11 municipalities.


Population census of Ifugao
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 147,281 —    
1995 149,598 +0.29%
2000 161,623 +1.67%
2007 180,711 +1.55%
2010 191,078 +2.05%
Source: National Statistics Office[2][3]

Based on the 2000 census survey, Ifugao are the majority of the province population with them comprising about 67.9% of the population. other ethnic groups living in the province are the Ilocanos 13.7%, Kalahan 8.6%, Ayangan 6.2% 0.6%.[4]

The people of Ifugao province are called Ifugaos, but mistakenly called by non-Cordilleran as Igorots. Ifugaos, despite the similarities in some cultural traditions and practices, are considered a separate ethnic group from Igorots.

As of today`s total number of population of Tinguian in the province of Ifugao is 2,609. (source: National Statistics Office)

Rice culture[edit]

A traditional house in Ifugao.

Ifugao culture revolves around rice, which is considered a prestige crop. There is an elaborate and complex array of rice culture feasts inextricably linked with taboos and intricate agricultural rites, from rice cultivation to rice consumption. Harvest season calls for grandiose thanksgiving feasts, while the concluding harvest rites "tungo" or "tungul" (the day of rest) entail a strict taboo of any agricultural work. Partaking of the rice wine (bayah), rice cakes, and 'moma' (mixture of several herbs, powdered snail shell and betel nut/ arecoline: and acts as a chewing gum to the Ifugaos) is an indelible practice during the festivities and ritual activitiess. their retual and Agricultural terracing is their principal means of livelihood along with farming. Their social status is measured by the number of rice field granaries, family heirlooms, gold earrings, carabaos (water buffaloes), as well as, prestige conferred through time and tradition. The more affluent, known as kadangyan were usually generous by nature, giving rice to poor neighbors in time of food shortage(s) and/or hardship(s). Furthermore, their culture was known for their legal system, using one of the world's most extensive oral legal traditions specifying the offense depending on the use of custom law; trial by elders (influenced in part by public opinion); or trial by ordeal. The wealthy were subjected to greater fines than the poor.

A village in the Batad rice terraces

Untouched by the influences of Spanish colonialism, Ifugao culture value kinship, family ties, religious and cultural beliefs. They're unique among all ethnic groups in the mountain province, not only for their interesting customs and traditions but also for their narrative literature such as the hudhud, an epic dealing with hero ancestors sung in a poetic manner. Another feature unique to the Ifugao is their woodcarving art, most notably the carved granary guardians bului and the prestige bench of the upper class, the hagabi. Their textiles renowned for their sheer beauty, colorful blankets and clothing woven on looms. Houses were well-built, characterized by as a square with wooden floors, windowless walls, and pyramidal thatch roofs. Elevated from the ground by four sturdy tree trunks, they feature removable staircases that were hoisted up at night to prevent entry by enemies and/or wild animals. Lastly, their attire remain traditional for male Ifugaos, donning the wanno or g-string; there are six types of wanno which are used depending on the occasion or the man's social status. Ifugao women, on the contrary, wear tapis, a wraparound skirt; there are five kinds of skirts worn, depending on the occasion and/or status of the woman/girl.


  1. ^ "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 20 December 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010". 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 20 December 2013. 
  3. ^ "Population and Annual Growth Rates for The Philippines and Its Regions, Provinces, and Highly Urbanized Cities". 2010 Census and Housing Population. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 26 August 2013. 
  4. ^ http://www.census.gov.ph/data/pressrelease/2002/pr0228tx.html