Apo Whang-Od is a 98 year old Filipina tattoo artist from Buscalan, Tinglayan, Kalinga, Philippines. She is considered as the last mambabatok from the Butbut tribe in Buscalan Kalinga and the oldest tattoo artist in the Philippines. She only use charcoal and thorns from Pomelo tree to create her artworks.
Last November 2015 my boyfriend and I went to Buscalan Village to meet and get a tattoo from Apo Whang-Od and I can say our trip is jam-packed with unexpected adventures. I have my itinerary prepared and everything, I did research and read a lot of articles before taking the trip yet we almost got lost luckily we met a tour guide along the way who helped us reach our destination.
We took a different route and instead of dropping off at Bugnay Village, we we’re dropped off in Tinglayan and since we arrived late and there are no hotel/Inns available around the town, our guide kuya Leo offered his place and told us we can spend the night there.
I was able to take a video of my boyfriend walking along the side of the mountain.Look how scary and fascinating it is the the same time..
After hours of trekking we finally reached Buscalan Village.
Then we went straight to Sagada to meet a couple of friends.
BITIN!! I want to go back, I want to feel the thrill and adventure again. So last January first week, we went back to Buscalan to get our 2nd session. ♥
Getting my second tattoo from Apo
As much as I wanted to stay there forever which is what I would totally like and do if I don’t have a job, but I do, so I need to go back to the city and face reality. Hopefully I will have time to visit Apo again next year (2017), so who’s up guys? I’d love to meet new friends, let me know! 🙂
|11:00PM – 11:30PM||CUBAO|
|12:00MN – 5:30AM||450-500php / person||Cubao to Baguio City (5-6hrs) – Genesis Bus|
|5:30AM – 5:45AM||30-50php / taxi||Baguio Terminal to DANGWA TERMINAL|
|5:45AM – 6:00AM||220php / person||Buy ticket seat to BONTOC CITY|
|7:00AM||FIRST TRIP – BONTOC CITY|
|7:00AM – 12:00NN||Baguio to Bontoc City (5-6hrs)|
|12:00NN||Catch last trip to BUGNAY /BUSCALAN -JEEP (12:30PM)|
|12:00NN – 12:15PM||9php / person||Ride tricycle – Terminal to BUGNAY /BUSCALAN|
|12:30PM – 2:30PM||100-120php / person||Jeep to BUGNAY / BUSCALAN – Tell driver to drop off BUSCALAN (2hrs more or less)|
|2:30PM – 3:30PM||50-100php /person – Motorcycle||Motorcycle to Drop off point (30mins)|
|3:30PM – 4:30PM||Trek – Hike to Buscalan Village (45mins – 1hr)|
|4:30 – 5:00PM||ARRIVE IN BUSCALAN VILLAGE – Inform Guide that you want to get a tattoo from Whang-Od so he can include you on the list for the next day session|
|• REST / FREE TIME •|
|• REST / FREE TIME •|
|5:30AM||WAKE UP / PREPARE|
|6:00AM – 6:30AM||BREAKFAST|
|6:30AM||Wait for turn – Tattoo Session|
|10:30AM||LEAVE BUSCALAN VILLAGE|
|10:30AM – 11:00AM||Trek – Hike to Tricycle Drop off point|
|11:00AM||100-150php / person||Ride Tricycle to Bugnay Village|
|12:00NN||Reach Bugnay Village – Wait for Jeepney to Bontoc City|
|1:00PM – 3:00PM||100-120php / person||Jeepney/Bus to Bontoc City (2hrs)|
|3:00PM – 3:15PM||9php / person||Tricycle to Bus Terminal|
|3:15PM – 8:30PM||220php / person||Bus to Baguio Dangwa Terminal|
|8:30PM||ARRIVE – BAGUIO|
|8:30PM – 9:30PM||DINNER|
|9:30PM – 10:00PM||470-490php / person||VICTORY LINER – BOOK SEAT|
|10:30PM||Just in case was able to book seat|
|10:30PM – 3:00AM||Baguio to Cubao (5-6hrs)|
|3:00AM – 4TH DAY||ARRIVE – CUBAO|
Total expenses: 2,000.00/head more or less
• Total expenses – exclusive of food, souvenir, etc.
• Prices depends on inns, tour guide, tattoo design.
• You need a guide before trekking to Buscalan, you will usually meet them in Bontoc City if not in Bugnay Village – you will not be entertained in the village if you don’t have a tour guide.
Guide Fee – 500php/person – you can tip them if you want
• Planning to stay overnight?
250php/night w/o food
300php/night with lunch and dinner
• Bring TONS of WATER and snacks/food
• Candies for the kids, beaded bracelets and necklaces for the old locals (they love it) and Gin/Brandy for the old male/guides.
• Bring: Flashlight, Posporo/Lighter, Insect Repellent, Alak!! (because it’s expensive there, like really expensive)
• There are no signal for either globe, smart & sun
• Buy all the things you need before you leave Bontoc City, it’s cheaper.
• When getting a tattoo from Apo or Grace, don’t expect that you will be accommodated right away, based on my first and second visit, we had to stay overnight to wait for our turn.
• Pack light because you’ll be having a hard time climbing the stairs on your way to the village.
• And lastly, enjoy the view, fresh air and the adventure.