Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — The Philippines is known for its pristine, white-sand beaches, but there are still a lot of hidden gems that remain undiscovered.
So if you’re game to try something new, or simply planning for your next vacation, why not take a trip up the mountains?
We listed some of the most notable hiking trails around the country that you — whether a beginner or an experienced climber — could add to your bucket list:
1. Mt. Pulag
Pulag, Luzon’s highest peak at 2,926 meters, is popular among hikers and trekkers, thanks to its picturesque trails and stunning view of the sea of clouds.
While Pulag is not highly recommended for first-timers, the site offers several friendlier trails. Take the Ambangeg Trail for an easy way to the summit, or go on the Tawangan Trail if you’re searching for more of a challenge.
2. Osmeña Peak, Cebu
Osmeña Peak, the highest in Cebu, is a perfect fit for day-hike itineraries, as it takes only 30 minutes to reach the summit. It might be a short journey to the top, but this gives climbers more time to enjoy the stunning view of Cebu.
3. Mt. Guiting-Guiting
Located at the heart of Sibuyan island in Romblon, Mt. Guiting-Guiting is considered one of the most challenging trails for hikers. Some climbers have tagged Guiting-Guiting (which means jagged in Romblomanon) as the “ultimate Philippine mountaineering experience” due to the challenges posed by its jagged, vertical rocks.
4. Kibungan Cross-Country (KXC) Traverse
Why not hike in three provinces at the same time?
The Kibungan Cross Country (KXC) Traverse trail starts from the town of Kibungan, Benguet, descends in Ilocos Sur, and then ends in La Union. Also dubbed as the “tri-provincial traverse,” KXC passes through rolling terrains of other mountain peaks in Luzon.
The adventure, however, normally takes three days to finish, so make sure you have packed the necessary essentials — including food, liquids, proper footwear, and an emergency first aid kit.
5. Mt. Maynoba
The province of Rizal has its fair share of spectacular mountain peaks, but hikers shouldn’t skip out on Mt. Maynoba. Nestled at the foot of the Sierra Madre mountain range, Mt. Maynoba likewise gives visitors a breathtaking view of the sea of clouds.
The best part: after the climb, hikers can cool down at the mountain’s series of waterfalls, dubbed as the “eight wonderfalls.”
However, not all hiking spots offer water sources that can keep you hydrated during a long day hike.
Preventing hiking dehydration
Hot and humid weather raises the risks of dehydration especially when hiking in the tropical conditions of the Philippines.
When you’re out for hours and the hot weather becomes almost intolerable, water isn’t enough.
Gatorade Ion not only quenches your thirst but also effectively and quickly replaces the fluids your body loses when you sweat — thus avoiding dehydration altogether.
The refreshing citrus-flavored isotonic drink isn’t your regular beverage – as it boasts of ions, is low in sodium, and has no preservatives, artificial flavors, nor any artificial colors.
Pack a bottle of the Gatorade Ion to beat the extreme Philippine heat and to keep dehydration at bay.