Tourist Spots and Best Things to do in Nueva Vizcaya
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The province of Nueva Vizcaya is located in the Cagayan Valley region in Luzon, Philippines. Bayombong is its capital and it’s situated in the middle of Benguet, Ifugao, Isabela, Quirino, Aurora, Nueva Ecija, and Pangasinan. It’s supposed to be a part of the Cordilleras but the Americans put in the Cagayan Valley region in the early 20th century. Quirino used to be a part of the province.
Nueva Vizcaya is a province with a rich soil that’s used in planting rice, corn, fruits, and vegetables. These are their main crops while the province also grows citrus crops like pomelo, Satsuma oranges, and ponkan. Their tilapia production is also impressive.
In terms of tourism, you could say that the province has a lot of promise but it’s not as visited like its neighboring provinces Pangasinan and Benguet but the allure of Nueva Vizcaya lies in its well-kept nature attractions, cultural celebrations, and warm hospitality.
Climb Mt. Pulag, Mt. Palali and Mt. Ugo Trekking
Mt. Pulag – Mountaineering groups love what the third highest mountain in the country has to offer. At 2,922 meters above sea level, hikers can enjoy views of a thriving forest that’s rich in both flora and fauna. The majority of the mountain was declared a National Park under Proclamation No. 75 in 1987. It can get cold at night but this doesn’t hinder tourists from climbing. It’s open all year but you’ll need a permit to hike which you can get at the site.
Mt. Palali – This lesser-known mountain features a tropical forest and scenic views of Nueva Vizcaya. The Bugkalots, Ifugaos, and Gaddangs spent time in this mountain to hunt. Typically, climbers can see wild orchids, flowers, pitcher plants, and other plant species and a variety of bird species. There are areas of cogon grasslands but its summit is wooded.
Mt. Ugo – ‘Ugo’ is a native term pertaining to someone getting beheaded. Legend has it that the natives of the mountains didn’t like the Spaniards and Americans trying to conquer their lands that they bring them up there to behead them. It’s not as high as its neighbors but its pine trees, rolling trails, and the villages, not to mention the spectacular views make Mt. Ugo a must visit.
Visit Mapallao Falls
Mapallao Falls is a seven-foot waterfall. The trek going to the falls is an experience in itself. The first thing to greet you when you start your journey is the hanging bridge and as you reach the falls, you will discover that there are many rock formations all over the place and a large pool for everyone to enjoy. Hikers have the option to bring foods and have a picnic.
Discover Old Churches and Cultural Establishments
St. Vincent Ferrer Parish Church in Dupax del Sur is a grandiose structure made of brick walls. It was built in 1775 and survived many earthquakes. It was declared a National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines. It’s also the biggest church in the province from the 18th century and can be reached from Bayombong in forty-five minutes.
Visit the People’s Museum and Library
This museum is located in Bayombong and stands alongside Saint Dominic Cathedral. It’s a two-storey historical building where everyone can see how the province came about. This building was once the provincial government seat where displays of the culture and traditions of the ethnic groups of Nueva Vizcaya can be seen.
Watch Festivals and Other Cultural Performances
Ammungan Festival – is the celebration of the history, culture, and founding of the province. The festival is also a way to honor and promote the ethnic tribes of the province. Visitors who attend the festival will see different cultural performances like native dances and songs and rituals. They also hold Agri-Industrial Trade Fair during the festival and street dances.
Visit Lower Magat Eco-Tourism Park
This place is ideal for a picnic, chill time, hiking, camping, and boating. This is one of the best places in Nueva Vizcaya for nature lovers. Other amenities and attractions include fish cages, campsite, swimming pool, a log cabin, wishing well, farm animals, butterfly garden and a zoo park.
Buy Different Fruits from the Province
Different citrus can be bought from stores that line the highways the province. Most of these fruits are planted in the highlands of Kasibu. Some of these fruits are seedless Satsuma orange and ponkan. There are also other fruits being sold in these stores which come from the nearby regions.
Capisaan Cave – the fifth longest cave system in the country extends to two barangays in the province namely Capisaan and Alayan. There’s an underground river which is 4.2 km in length and chambers and tunnels where visitors can see stalagmites, stalactites, speleothems, and other rock formations. The cave has small holes and steep parts so patience and courage is needed to discover it all the way through.
Visit Provincial Capitol ‘Luneta of the North’
Governor Patricio G. Dumlao spearheaded the construction of the complex known as ‘The Luneta of the North’. The complex houses the provincial government offices. Aside from that, the complex has a park with exotic plants. Benches are found scattered at the complex as well as giant lamps, man-made lagoon, etc.
Go to Imugan Falls
It will take about 20 minutes to reach Imugan Falls from the community proper. This two-level shallow catch basin waterfall offer trekking experience beyond compare. The hike promises breathtaking views. There’s a choice to go fishing or getting to know the locals of the area. The Imugan Mountain Fresh Factory, maker of different spreads and jams is also located in the area.
Visit Balete Pass
Also known as Dalton Pass, this is a zigzag mountain road connecting Nueva Vizcaya and Nueva Ecija to parts of Central Luzon. The pass is where the Battle of Luzon happened. Today, it serves as a tourist attraction that people can go to including the Tourism Complex. It’s located along Highway 5 and any bus going to Tuguegarao or Nueva Viscaya will pass through there.