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Waiting for the rain to stop at Banaue viewpoint

The jeep arrived in Banaue (from Bontoc) around 2:30pm. As soon as I got my things ready I went straight to the Ohayami terminal to buy my night bus for Manila. Good thing too because there were only maybe 3-5 seats left. After that I walked around Banaue town trying to see how I could burn some time for the 7pm departure. I went to the tourist office only to get turned off by the shocking standard prices they ask. Eeep. I left & tried to see what else is there to do. I walked up some staircases to the local museum. When I got to the top, a tricycle dropped off a passenger. I slowly walked over to see how much he would charge for an afternoons worth of activities. And so I met Abner, who would be my excellent guide for the day. 

Highlights: Beautiful views of the Valley.
Cast of Characters: Abner my guide/driver & myself
Logistics/ Links: here's a good blog post with the exorbitant prices listed. I'll update this post with Abner's contact info.
When: Late November, 2011. Its still raining in the Philippines in November. Not a good time to go. Banaue was cool & nice though.
Location: Banaue, Philippines
Cost: I was able to negotiate the price down to P450/ $10 for the Banaue viewpoint & Hiwang village. Plus P20/$0.50 for Hiwang village fee. I gave P50/~$1 to the group of elderly locals for the photo shoot.

Normally the tourist office would charge P800/$18.72 for the viewpoint trip & P900/$21 for Hiwang village. Those prices are insane & totally not worth it.
Trip ReportI'm so glad I met Abner. He's a pretty good guide. He was born & raised in Banaue. Some of the older folks in traditional attire are actually his relatives. The trip to just the 3 viewpoints lasted maybe 2 hours or so. It was raining. We hung out at one of the viewpoints & just shared stories. If I had paid for an official guide, the whole trip would probably last about 30 minutes. If I wanted to stay longer, I would have to walk back. That's what the tourist office told me. 
When the rain settled down a bit, we drove up to Hiwang Village. Overall, the trip started from about 3pm till I was ready for my bus ride. Abner even brought me to the bus station after Hiwang village...& after dinner...& after the local live band club. It was nice. A great way to spend the afternoon.

Some background for you

Town of Banaue

One of them is Abner's grandma. I forgot which one.

I know I'll probably shrink about 30% when I get to their age.

Chickens doing some souvenir shopping

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