Famous Non-Volcanic Mountains, Mountain Ranges and Hills in the Philippines
The Philippines is also teeming with non-volcanic mountains, hills and mountain ranges, of which Filipinos are quite proud to share. However, this generous trait has led to the denudation of the mountain’s forests, the endangerment and extinction of Philippine wildlife and the occurrences of massive flooding in their respective low lying areas.
The Banaue Rice Terraces of Sagada Mountains
The most famous of Philippine landforms are the mountains of Sagada, located in the Mountain Province of Luzon and found in the Cordillera region. Visitors often regard the place as a Shangri-la, where caves, ancient burial sites, dangerously beautiful cliff sides are found.
Near Sagada are the Banaue Rice Terraces of Ifugao. These structures symbolize the Filipino’s endurance for hard-work and adaptability. The ancestral Ifugao tribe were basically farmers, who created one of the Eight Wonders of the World, more than 2,000 years ago.
These terraces are amphitheater-like layers of rice fields, manually carved from more than 4,000 square miles of mountainsides reaching 5,000 feet above sea level. The rice terraces showcase the ancient Ifugaos’ mastery of their natural settings, their impressive communal cooperation and inclinations for a harmonious co-existence with different tribal units. These are evidenced by the successful irrigational systems which were fashioned from out of the caves, crags and engineered stones, all these without any of the strife and violence common to tribal communities.
Yet the people of Ifugao fought hard and valiantly for the preservation of these terraces as their common enemy, the foreign multinational corporations, tried to bribe their way into setting up their industries in their revered lands. Many student activists and tribal leaders met their untimely demise while some mysteriously disappeared during those years of struggle. Eventually, UNESCO’s declaration of this region as a World Heritage Site brought back peace to this beautiful monument of Philippine heritage.