Lifestyle

Hike Mt. Ulap Like Nadine, James, and Friends—Here's How

It's just 40 minutes away from Baguio City!
IMAGE Tom Reid | instagram.com/tomdareid, Andrei Suleik | instagram.com/andreisuleik

When we saw the pics of Nadine Lustre, James Reid, and their barkada at Mt. Ulap, we immediately got our Google on. Not (only) because we're such dorks fangirls, but also because we want a piece of that lit view, some peace and quiet with friends, and a perfect excuse to wear our winter outfits. Ha!

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Mt. Ulap is located in Brgy. Ampucao in Itogon, Benguet. To get there, you need to make a trip to Baguio and ride a jeep or taxi going to Brgy. Ampucao—it's just 40 minutes away from the city.

 

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Once you get there, proceed to the Ampucao barangay hall complex and pay a registration fee of P100 per head. From there, you can decide among yourselves if you prefer a day hike or overnight camping or if you need a porter to assist you on your hike.

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Here are the rates as of February 2017.

Local guide fee (1 guide: 7 persons): Day hike - P600; Overnight Camping - P1,000

Campsite fee (Overnight Camping for group of 10 persons and below) - P800

Porter fee (optional): Day hike P500; Overnight camping P800

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Reservations are allowed, too. You can book a slot for your group here:

As for the hike, it takes around 4-6 hours going up, but don't let that number scare you as Mt. Ulap is considered to be a minor climb—perfect for beginners. There are three peaks in this hike: the Ambanao Paoay Peak, Gungal Peak, in which a lot of hikers take pics at the Gungal Rock, and finally, Mt. Ulap.

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As expected, the view is majestic and definitely worthy of the 4-6-hour hike. AKA super perfect for your feed!

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The view doesn't stop at the third peak, though. Going down is just as interesting. You'll come across three of the Pong Ol burial caves. These caves are where traditional Cordillera burials are held.

And because it's just less than an hour away from Baguio City, you can cap off the climb by eating out and hanging in one of Baguio's many cool (pun intended) spots.

Want to share your trekking experience? Let us know in the comments below!

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About the author
Mara Agner
Assistant Lifestyle and Features Editor
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Katherine Go A day ago

Cold Food

The most thrilling and delightful moment of any school day is opening up your baon during breaks. There is always so much excitement in unveiling your homemade meal and snacks housed inside matching heat-insulating containers. Because preparing packed meals is an age-old tradition of showing parental love, loved ones pour effort into curating a nutritious meal accompanied by a selection of side dishes, desserts, and beverages daily; it reminds us that we are being taken care of, even from far away.

Baon plays a significant role in a Filipino childhood. Almost every Filipino child comes to school with baon made especially for them by their parents or household helpers. Even Filipinos in the labor force continue to bring baon for varying reasons: to save money, recycle leftovers, cater to personal taste, or attend to special needs. Nonetheless, eating your baon is a heart-warming experience that allows Filipinos to bring a piece of home along with them wherever they go.

Even other cultures practice making packed lunch. In Japan, mothers create bento--Japanese meals in partitioned boxes. Because of the popularity of bento, trends have emerged, such as the Kyaraben, or character-themed bento. Naturally, Japanese parents and students began competing for who had the cutest and tastiest bento, and this is similar to what I have witnessed in my own childhood. I remember seeing my classmates sharing their snacks and lunches. They would compare and boast about their parents' or yayas’ cooking. In my case, I never had the chance to join in the competition or indulge in homemade cooking. Up until this day, I have never brought any baon to school.

For a long time, I envied others. As trivial or petty as it may seem, not having baon became a problem for my grade school self. During that time, I had to sit in a separate cafeteria away from my friends because the kids who bought food were assigned to sit elsewhere. You could consider me spoiled, but I wanted to experience something most kids did. I had food at home, so what made it so hard to bring some with me to school?

Now that I am on my final year in high school I have come to realize the benefits of purchasing my own food. Since I spent on food everyday, I learned to budget my allowance at a young age. Over the years, I learned to practice self-control whenever I wanted to eat more greasy fries and drink sweetened beverages. I have tasted the strangest viands at the school cafeterias, and I have repeatedly satiated myself over my latest delicious discoveries. Despite the struggles, I am thankful that I have never had baon because of what I have learned. Not to mention, I never had to experience eating cold food.

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