Museo Kordilyera in Baguio City: The First Ethnographic Museum in the North

Replica of Kalinga People inside Museo Kordilyera
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Museo Kordilyera in Baguio City

Baguio City, Philippines — Bound with rich culture, there’s still more to Baguio than meets the eye. Museo Kordilyera, for example, the latest addition to its ever-growing attraction, is a must-see for every culture and history buff!

Museo Kordilyera in Baguio City
Museo Kordilyera in Baguio City

If you’ve already visited the prime destinations in Baguio such as the Burnham Park, Bencab Museum, and Camp John Hay a countless time, then you will surely love this newest attraction in the city as well.

Cordillera Anthromorphic Carvings
Cordillera Anthromorphic Carvings

Did you know that the museum houses an audio-visual room, a shop, and, a café? Get to know the museum more, and read along!

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About the Museum

Talk about convenience, Museo Kordilyera is located inside the University of the Philippines Baguio. After much delay, the three-story museum was formally opened to the public on January 31 of 2019. It is also billed as the first ethnographic museum in the Northern part of the Philippines.

Wood Carvings inside Cordillera Museum in UP Baguio
Wood Carvings inside Cordillera Museum in UP Baguio

As per UP Baguio website, Dr. Salvador-Amores, the museum’s director said that this and succeeding scholarly works from the faculty that will be featured in the museum are works “dedicated to regional culture, (since the museum) will serve as a repository of the tangible and intangible heritage of the Cordillera.

Old Photograph of Cordillera People
Old Photograph of Cordillera People

The museum focuses in the collection and preservation of artifacts unique to the Cordillera region, its peoples, tradition and culture; thus, the name. It also aims on understanding the identity and culture of the indigenous peoples of the Cordillera and Northern Luzon as an integral part of the evolving Filipino culture.

Old Photograph of Kalinga People
Old Photograph of Kalinga People

The museum also serves as a venue for UP Baguio scholars and faculty to do their research in the field of Cordillera studies through lecture series, themed exhibitions and cultural performances. They are also visited by different local government organization and foundation since it was opened.

Old Photos of Bontoc Tribe
Old Photos of Bontoc Tribe

What to See and Expect

Other than paintings, here in the museum, you can see a huge Ifugao gut, display of ethnics’ attire, some collections of BenCab Museum, UP Baguio Library and Archives, the Saint Louis University Museum and the Diocese of Baguio Museum and Archives.

Bulul, also known as bul-ul or tinagtaggu, is a carved wooden figure used to guard the rice crop by the Ifugao peoples of northern Luzon.
Bulul, also known as bul-ul or tinagtaggu, is a carved wooden figure used to guard the rice crop by the Ifugao peoples of northern Luzon.

Last February to April, an exquisite Ifugao wood carving was displayed at the museum. So, that’s really something to look forward to in the museum.

Ifugao Spoons
Ifugao Spoons
Ifugao Wood Carvings
Ifugao Wood Carvings

You’ll also be amazed when you see the Ifugao bench called the hagabi weighing 20 tons. It is said to be donated by National Artist Benedicto Cabrera. Other exhibits include works of the late anthropologist Jules de Raedt, and Roland Rabang’s selected ethnographic photographs.

Special woman's wrap- around skirt with dominant red and white horizontal stripes, woven in Bontoc, sold in Banaue.
Special woman’s wrap- around skirt with dominant red and white horizontal stripes, woven in Bontoc.

Impressively, some of the displays even came all the way Chicago, Illinois, Michigan, and the University of Pennsylvania Archives.

Museo Kordilyera Sections

When you enter the museum, you’ll be greeted with a spacious and all-white element to show off a minimalist vibe. The museum is designed by Architect Aris Go and the 90 Design Studio design team.

lusong n. wooden mortar for pounding rice or corn
lusong – wooden mortar for pounding rice or corn

What’s amazing though is that the first story of the museum is located at ground level, as with the other campus buildings. However, the second and third levels of the museum are situated underground. The lower level houses the museum’s permanent collection, orientation room, and a curatorial space for ethnographic material.

Replica of Kalinga People inside Museo Kordilyera
Replica of Kalinga People inside Museo Kordilyera

You can definitely see the tremendous effort put into this museum. And although not that big, the space was maximized to put every exhibit into place. There was even a coffee shop and a souvenir shop so you can chill after touring the place.

Museo Kordilyera Souvenir Shop
Museo Kordilyera Souvenir Shop

Other information

Address: UP Drive, Governor Pack Road, Baguio City 2600
Operating Hours: Tuesdays to Sundays (9:00 am to 5:00 pm)
Entrance Fees: P30 for non-UP students / P60 for adults / FREE admission for UP students, faculty, and admin staff (20% discount for Senior citizens and PWDs)
Telephone number: 0945 803 6165
Facebook page: /upbmuseokordilyera/

Check out our complete list of recommended Hotels in Baguio City via Agoda or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.

Also see:

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  • Experience Baguio Cashless Adventure with PayMaya!
  • The Manor Hotel Review
  • Affordable Places to Stay in Baguio City
  • 12 Must-Visit Restaurants in Baguio City
  • Baguio City Travel Guide
  • Best Things to do in Baguio City
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