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‘Falls’ in love with Cagayan

Cagayan, a province nestled in northern Philippines, is not only rich in cultural heritage but also boasts of mesmerizing natural wonders. 

Among these hidden gems, the waterfalls of Cagayan stand out as pristine symbols of nature's beauty and resilience. 

In this feature, we will embark on a journey to explore the enchanting waterfalls that grace the landscapes of Cagayan, inviting travelers to witness the harmonious symphony of water, rocks, and lush greenery that will surely make you fall in love with Cagayan.

The municipality of Peñablanca, aside from its famous Callao Cave, emerges as a treasure trove of waterfalls, each offering a unique glimpse into the province's natural wonders. One of its most underrated waterfalls is the ‘Gabur-Gabur Falls’ in Barangay Nanguilatan. From the province’s capitol compound, one has to travel for at most 40 minutes to reach the Gabur-Gabur Falls. 

Unlike other falls in the province, tourists need not walk because the parking area is just 50 meters away from the falls’ plunge pool.

Accessible through a journey that winds through picturesque scenery, Gabur-Gabur Falls is a cascading masterpiece surrounded by the rich biodiversity that characterizes the town. The falls are maintained by the barangay local government unit, and for a tourist to enjoy the beauty of the Gabur-Gabur Falls, he has to pay P70, inclusive of the entrance fee, environmental fee, and barangay fee.

(Watch here PIA Cagayan’s vlog on Gabur-Gabur Falls: )

The writer visits three of the famous waterfalls in Penablanca, Cagayan. (L to R) Gabur-Gabur Falls, Lapi Falls and Borsot Falls. (PIA photo)

If you also speak of Penablanca, a full-blooded Cagayano will definitely associate it with the famous ‘Lapi Falls’ in Barangay Lapi. 

With its impressive height and thundering waters, Lapi Falls captivates the hearts of those who seek the grandeur of nature. Located amidst verdant landscapes, Lapi Falls provides a refreshing escape for locals and visitors alike. 

From the town’s municipal hall, one has to travel for more or less two hours to reach the jump-off area and then a 30-minute walk to reach the falls. To enjoy Lapi Falls, one has to coordinate with the barangay officials, and they will provide you with a tour guide.

(Watch here PIA Cagayan’s vlog on Lapi Falls: )

Still in Peñablanca are the Borsot Falls. Unlike Gabur-Gabur Falls and Lapi Falls, Borsot Falls is a humble destination located in Barangay Baliuag. From the town’s municipal hall, one has to travel for more or less 30 minutes to reach the jump-off area and another 30-minute walk.

The Utto Falls in Iguig, Cagayan. (PIA photo)

From Peñablanca, we go to the promising municipality of Iguig. Unknown to many Cagayanos, Iguig is home to two waterfalls, namely the “Utto Falls” and “Dabbay Falls,” located in Barangays Campo and Garab, respectively.

According to Sangguniang Bayan Member Mariz Callueng, chairperson of the Committee on Tourism, the local government is now developing an access road going to the tourism site.

To visit the two falls in Iguig, one has to coordinate with the Municipal Tourism Office through the ‘LGU Iguig Information Office’ Facebook page.

From Iguig, we go to its nearby municipality, Amulung, which is home to seven waterfalls. 

Of the seven waterfalls, only five are accessible to tourists, namely the Pinicon Falls, Mapacpacu Falls, and Binakal Falls, all in Barangay Dadda, and the Posolgong Falls and Nagrusudan Falls in Barangay Gangauan.

To visit the five falls in Amulung, one has to also coordinate with the Municipal Tourism Office through the ‘Amulung Tourism Office’ Facebook page.

From Iguig, we travel to the municipality of Baggao, where seven waterfalls are ready to welcome tourists. These seven waterfalls are the Kalamudingan Falls, Carbon Falls, Nagkabitan Falls, Naglawayan Falls, and Nilacnogen Falls, all in Barangay Sta. Margarita, the Seven Step Falls in Barangay Asassi, and the famous Bluewater Falls and Cave System in Barangay J. Pallagao.

Of the seven known waterfalls in Baggao, the Bluewater Falls and Cave System is the most accessible one, more or less two hours from Tuguegarao City. Combining the allure of caves and waterfalls, the Bluewater Falls and Cave System stand as a testament to the geological wonders within Baggao. 

As adventurers explore the depths of the cave system, they are rewarded with the breathtaking sight of a waterfall gracefully making its way through the caverns. This unique convergence of elements showcases the intricate relationship between land and water in Baggao.

To get here, tourists may visit the “Baggao Tourism Office” Facebook page for rates and other concerns.

The Bluewater Falls and Kalamudingan Falls in Baggao, Cagayan. (PIA photos)

‘From Baggao, you can also visit the Burayok Falls and Tanglagan Falls in the municipality of Gattaran. As of writing, the Gattaran Cultural and Tourism Office said there are two other potential falls to be developed, namely the Dissuur Falls and the Pinsal Falls Fish Sanctuary.

The Tanglagan Falls in Barangay Tangladan is a hidden gem that awaits those willing to venture off the beaten path. Surrounded by untouched wilderness, the falls cascade down rocky cliffs, creating a soothing melody that resonates with the serenity of the surrounding environment. The trek to Tanglagan Falls is a testament to the untouched beauty that Gattaran holds dear.

The Pinsal Fish Sanctuary Falls and Dissuur Falls in Gattaran, Cagayan. (Photos courtesy of Gatarran Tourism Office)

From Gattaran, we travel to the eastern portions of Cagayan—the municipalities of Santa Teresita, Gonzaga, and Santa Ana.

Taking pride in its ecotourism potential of the numerous caves, cone karst formations, and bodies of water such as waterfalls, the municipality of Santa Teresita also boasts its lone discovered ‘Aruyot Falls’ located in Barangay Buyun.

The development and protection of eco-tourism sites have been one of Mayor Rodrigo de Gracia’s thrusts.

In Gonzaga, when one visits the famous active volcano Mt. Cagua, one will not only enjoy the views of the two craters and the summit but also the sight and sound of cascading water from Cagua Falls. A good ten-minute walk from the Bagsang base camp, Cagua Falls will offer worn-out trekkers some cool-down breaks. It is the tallest waterfall discovered on Mt. Cagua.

(Watch here PIA Cagayan’s vlog on Cagua Falls: ttps:// ) 

And when you expect that Santa Ana only offers the usual pristine white beaches, beautiful resorts, delectable foods, and a glimpse of the town’s culture, you are missing one-fourth of your stay in the municipality, as it also offers you the beautiful ‘Buwacag Falls’ in barangay Santa Clara.

‘Buwacag’ means the thunderous sound of flowing water from a high-level stream falling over a cliff-like step in bedrock.

A tourist takes a photo opportunity at Cagua Falls in Gonzaga, Cagayan. (PIA photo)

In Calayan Island, aside from offering white beaches and picturesque landscapes and seascapes, one can also enjoy the Caanawan Falls, Bataraw Falls, and Malangsi Falls.

To complete our ‘waterfalls journey in Cagayan”, let’s travel to the western part, which includes the municipality of Lasam, Sto. Niño, Allacapan, Ballesteros, Pamplona, Abulug, Sanchez Mira, Claveria, and Santa Praxedes.

Traveler Sonnyboy Pacursa has documented more than 10 waterfalls in the municipality of Lasam, located in Barangays Sicalao, Peru, Cabatacan West, and Cabatacan East.

Of the many waterfalls in Lasam, the most accessible are the Nangaribuan Falls and Bagi Falls in Barangay Sicalao.

Nangaribuan Falls is a 10-meter-high waterfall located in the western portion of Sicalao. The waterfall is fed by a stream uphill, creating a "twin" water curtain as the water flow is bisected by a rock on the brink of the fall. Sicalao, according to Pacursa, is considered the last ecological frontier of Lasam town.

(Watch here PIA Cagayan’s vlog on Nangaribuan Falls and Bagi Falls: )

Other falls in Lasam include Kama Falls, Pinsal Falls, Lucas Falls, Ngatuen Falls, and Pekkan De Sicalao Falls.

The Caddud falls in Sto. Niño town also awaits you to explore its beauty, while some of the discovered fall in Allacapan town are the Dalayap Falls, Kulaw Falls, Cataratan Falls, and Labben Damortis Falls.

[Upper Photo] The writer at the Bagi falls in Lasam, Cagayan. [Lower Right] The writer at the Pinsal falls in Lasam, cagayan. [Lower Left] The Nangaribuan Falls in Lasam, cagayan. (PIA photos)

The coastal town of Pamplona also offers you its Bagu Falls, Barurbur Falls, Malagabavi Falls, and Pikkan Vulu Falls, while in Abulug town, the Matavel Falls are ready to be photographed.

The municipality of Santa Praxedes also takes pride in its Portabaga Falls, Likid Falls, and Kimmattigid Falls, while the coastal towns of Sanchez Mira and Claveria have their Burbursayo Falls and Mabnag Falls, respectively.

Cagayan's waterfalls are not just geographical landmarks; they are living testament to the province's commitment to preserving its natural treasures. As travelers venture into the heart of Cagayan, they are met with a symphony of waterfalls, each telling a unique story of resilience and beauty. These hidden gems invite us to appreciate the delicate balance between human exploration and the preservation of our planet's awe-inspiring wonders.

Cagayan's waterfalls are more than scenic attractions; they are invitations to connect with nature, marvel at its majesty, and leave with a profound appreciation for the beauty that exists within the heart of the Philippines. As they say, #LoveCagayan, #LoveThePhilippines. (OTB/MDCT/PIA Cagayan)

About the Author

Mark Djeron Tumabao

Regional Editor and Social Media Manager

Region 2

An ordinary writer from Cagayan Province. 

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