Ready to step out and up your hiking game? Mountaineer Gideon Lasco, author of “Dayhikes from Manila”, lists 10 of Luzon’s most rewarding mountain trails
Although the Philippines is better-known for its islands and beaches, it’s also home to a multitude of mountains. Reef to ridge, summit to sea, the archipelago lends itself to adventures for every outdoorsy-type; even those who prefer to stay on the beach cannot escape the sight of mountains looming in the background.
Luzon is a perfect example of this diversity. At 109,965km2, the largest island in the country has hundreds of mountains and hiking destinations that showcase a range of environments — from coastal grasslands to cloud forests, active volcanoes to benign mossy forests.
From Metro Manila, many hikes can be completed comfortably in one day. But for avid hikers, all of Luzon is a wonderland, and you can hike for days or even weeks in the endless trails of the Northern Cordilleras, going from village to village, passing through rice terraces and pine forests to reach its lofty, cloud-capped peaks.