Discover the Shangri-la on the Edge-A A +A
Tuesday, May 1, 2012
TIRED of your dull city life?
If you are, then pack your bags and get yourself a seat on one of those buses heading over to Kadaclan, Mountain Province! The trip alone will awaken your thirst for the thrill of adventure and discovery.
Audacious and environment - loving souls would surely have the time of their lives away from the clutches of work and pollution. Moreover, coffee aficionados will find Mountain Province as their haven, as the coffee stream is unlimited and free for all. The lifestyle of the community is also something worth experiencing because even a stranger in the locality would be welcomed and treated like family, in true Cordilleran fashion. Kadaclan folks would readily show you around the community, tell you about their origins and their stories.
In the 10th Menaliyam festival, the mother of all festivals in Mountain Province, the exquisite traditional practices of each barangay in Kadaclan were showcased. The festival’s aim is to relay the ancient culture and tradition to its younger generation before modernity completely takes over. Kadaclan’s spectacle first began on December 3, 2003 thanks to the visions of Dionie Chungalan Sr., Peace Corps Volunteer Joel Hansen, Hon. Basilio Pulagan and the residents of Kadaclan. Their ideas were indeed fully realized, as the tribe’s children actively joined in the festivities. Traditional dance and dramatization competitions were also held to show the tourists their lifestyles and practices. Moreover, environmental awareness was also raised when children garbed in freshly cut fern, playing gongs and dancing to the beats sent the message of ‘Save the Environment, Stop Cutting Trees’ very clearly to their elders. Kadaclan’s celebration of tradition and life in the terrains was vibrantly imaginative, innovative and full of bliss.
Kadaclan’s eco - walk could already rival the La Mesa Eco Park’s trail, with its majestic views of various falls, multitudes of mountains like Mount Amuyao and the up close encounter with the rice terraces. Within the delicate terraces is Kadaclan’s prize produce, the rice, which they export to Montana, USA. The community’s aim is to modernize their rice milling process to create more high quality produce this year too.
Back in 2001, former president Gloria Macapagal - Arroyo and the first gentleman, paid a visit to the hidden municipality to find ways to improve the tourism of Kadaclan. Pictures of this historic moment are plastered on the pillars of the community’s homestay, alongside other images of its many visitors.
Reaching this hidden haven might require a lot of perseverance and patience; however, it is all worth it. There are so many things that this community can offer, from organic produce to extraordinary experiences. Its modest grandeur offers more than what you would expect. In Kadaclan, the things we oftentimes overlook take us by surprise and amaze us. The town truly lives up to its title, ‘The Shangri-La on the Edge’.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on May 01, 2012.