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Ili ti Sagada
A view over the municipality of Sagada
Map of Mountain Province showing the location of Sagada
|Region||Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR)|
|• Mayor||Eduardo T. Latawan Jr.|
|• Total||83.32 km2 (32.17 sq mi)|
|• Density||130/km2 (350/sq mi)|
|Time zone||PST (UTC+8)|
|Income class||5th class|
Sagada is famous for its hanging coffins. This is a traditional way of burying people that is still utilized. Not everyone is qualified to be buried this way; among other things, one had to have been married and had grandchildren.
Popular activities include trekking, exploring both caves and waterfalls, spelunking, bonfires, picnics, rappelling, visiting historical sites, nature hikes, and participating in tribal celebrations. Guides can be found upon registration at the tourist-office in Sagada Proper (the main town) for a small fee.
Sagada is nestled in a valley at the upper end of the Malitep tributary of the Chico River some one and a half kilometers above sea level in the Central Cordillera Mountains, enveloped between the main Cordillera Ranges and the Ilocos Range. Mount Data in the south and Mount Kalawitan in the southeast pierce the horizon. Mount Polis, Bessang and Mount Tirad in the east, and Mount Sisipitan in the north mark the Mountain Province–Abra boundary.
- Dagdag (Poblacion)
- Demang (Poblacion)
- Patay (Poblacion)
- Tetepan Norte
- Tetepan Sur
According to legend, Sagada was founded as an ili or village by Biag, a man from Bika in eastern Abra. The people from Bika were forced out of their ili by raiding headhunters. Biag's family resettled in Candon but when baptism or the giving of names was enforced, Biag's family chose to move back toward the mountains in search for a settlement. Along the way, he and his siblings decided to part ways. A brother, Balay, chose to return to Candon, a sister to Abra. Another brother settled along the upper Abra River. Biag pushed further to the east until he came to what is now Sagada.
Perhaps for lack of transportation and willing guides, few conquistadors set foot in Sagada during the Spanish Era, and a Spanish Mission was not founded until 1882. As a result, it is one of a few places that has preserved its indigenous culture with little Spanish influence.
|Population census of Sagada|
|Source: National Statistics Office|
Seeing that the Roman Catholicism in the Philippines has long been established, missionary Charles Henry Brent mentioned that "we are not building an altar over and against another altar," thus focusing Episcopal missionary activity among the Filipino-Chinese in Manila, the tribes in Mindanao and the tribes of northern Luzon. Since the coming of missionaries from the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States, the municipality of Sagada has become the only Philippine town that is predominantly Anglican with almost 95% baptised into the Episcopal Church of the Philippines (ECP). A known landmark at the centre of town is the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, a vibrant Episcopal parish. In 2004, the ECP celebrated its centennial with much of the festivities centered on the town of Sagada.
Since the climate is similar to those of Baguio and Benguet, its crops are likewise temperate products such as cabbage, tomatoes, green pepper, potatoes, carrots, beans, and others. Between 1882 and 1896, the Spanish colonizers introduced Arabica coffee: a source of income since the American occupation. Citrus, mainly lemon, lime and Valencia oranges were introduced from Spain by Jaime Masferre to provide the needs of American missionaries and employees of the Mission of Saint Mary the Virgin. During the American Period, the Americans introduced products like strawberries, apples, and pine trees, due to its cooler, highland rainforest climate.
Places of interest
Sagada has many natural wonders. Backpackers and tourists can enjoy the waters of Bokong and Bomod-ok Falls. Other places that can be visited are:
- Sumaguing and Lumiang Caves
- Bomod-ok and Bokong Falls
- Rice terraces
- Echo Valley
- Kiltepan Tower
- Underground River
- Lake Danum
- Hanging Coffins
- Pongas Falls
- Mount Ampacao
- Marlboro Mountain
- Sagada was featured in the Filipino film, Don't Give Up on Us.
- Sagada was featured in an episode of Locked Up Abroad.
- In the "Death" episode of The Moaning of Life, Karl Pilkington visits Sagada to see a local community's cliffside burial techniques.
- There are limestone mountains throughout Sagada. This part of Luzon used to be submerged in the ocean billions of years ago, and fossilised seashells can be found in the walls of Sumaguing Cave.
- "Official City/Municipal 2013 Election Results". Intramuros, Manila, Philippines: Commission on Elections (COMELEC). 11 September 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
- "Province: Mountain Province". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
- "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010". 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sagada, Mountain Province.|
- Sagada Government Website
- Sagada at DMOZ
- Philippine Standard Geographic Code
- Philippine Census Information
- Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism on Sagada