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Ifugao Rice Terraces: The 8th Wonder of the World

by nobert soloria bermosa on 21/04/08 at 6:43 am

Details and compelling reasons why the Ifugao rice terraces is considered the 8th wonder of the world. Find out.

The Ifugao Rice Terraces or popularly known worldwide as Banawe Rice Terraces was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995 because of its great beauty that expresses conquered and conserved harmony between humankind and the environment. This primitive agricultural engineering feat is well known all over the world.

It was built 2,000 years ago on the slopes of the towering mountains of Northern Luzon, Philippines by bare human hands. If place end to end, it would extend more than 22,500 kilometers, that is, 8 times longer than the Great Wall of China, or more than half of the earth’s circumference, amazing isn’t it?

The Ifugao rice terraces are largely regarded as the “8th wonder of the world.” It is also well known that the Banawe and other Ifugao rice terraces were built without forced labor, unlike the other Seven Wonders of the World, which employed slaves.

Ifugao rice fields are worthy of high rank among the wonders of the world. There are places where they reach from an altitude of 2500 feet to one of 5000 feet, and many places where they extend from an altitude of 1500 feet to one of 4500 feet. Ifugaos must be highly commended for constructing the rice terraces, since they did not have surveying instruments and modern machinery at their disposal.

The rice terraces are more than a sight to behold and an ancient monument-they are actually a very functional agriculture and ecological masterpiece. Likewise, the rice terraces have been producing rice for centuries, showing that the Ifugaos were able to maintain the fertility of the rice fields’ soils and even contain soil erosion.

A view of a promising bountiful harvest

Besides being an engineering feat, the Ifugao rice terraces demonstrate that farming can blend in harmony with culture, and more importantly, nature. Preparation of the rice field for planting is done manually using basic implements only.

During planting season

The Ifugao’s irrigation system diverts water from rivers and streams, and channels these to the terraces through a series of dikes and pipes. The pipes can be bamboo of various diameters, which make sure only the right amount of water is channeled to the terraces, and that no soil erosion is caused by excessive water flow. At the upper point of most terraces are well-preserved rainforests, the primary source of water. So simple yet efficient is the irrigation system of the rice terrace.

For hundreds of years, Ifugaos have diverted stream water for irrigation up to five to six kilometers. Using the stream’s current and sheer manpower, they rolled stones and small boulders from mountaintops and formed these as rock walls to hold mountainsides and create rice terraces.

Come and see the scenic beauty of Ifugao Rice Terraces. Mesmerize with their tribal rituals, weave a blanket with the locals, and if one is lucky enough, you might be invited to a tribal “kaniao” or a grand feast.

Ifugao Tribal Dance

Another breathtaking view of Banawe Rice Terraces

For more tourist destinations in the Philippines see;

The Top Five Island Tourist destinations in the Philippines

11 Reasons Why You Have to Go to the Hundred islands

Top Eight Best Diving in the Philippines

Best Island Tourist Destinations in the Philippines

Best Tourist Destinations in the Philippines

What Makes Batanes Unique From Other Tourist Destinations?

The Top Six Most Popular caves in the Philippines

Top 10 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Philippines

Baguio City: A City in the Sky

Liked it


Apr 21st, 2008

Once again, very informative writing about rice. well done Nobert

Ruby Hawk

Apr 21st, 2008

Robert, interesting writing. best wishes, Ruby

nobert soloria bermosa

Apr 21st, 2008

thanks a lot to you Ruby..

Alexa Gates

Apr 22nd, 2008

I never knew so much about rice!

nobert soloria bermosa

Apr 22nd, 2008

thanks a lot Alexa, it’s the structure that i like best,

Lucy Lockett

Apr 24th, 2008

Wonderful information, amazing place!


Apr 24th, 2008

Great article, how interesting!!

tracy sardelli

Apr 25th, 2008

really intersting Nobert, You are really a gifted writer.

nobert soloria bermosa

Apr 26th, 2008

thanks a lot Lucy,Francie and Tracy,

Jonas Fabonan

Aug 12th, 2008

Very interesting because it can prove that our culture about agriculture


Aug 25th, 2008

very nice article…so true.


Feb 12th, 2009

you can join now the http://www.heirloomrice.com/ to preserve the Rice Terraces in the phillipines and help them


Apr 14th, 2009

yes yes yes.indeed this should be included in the wonders of the world


Jun 17th, 2009

woow,woow tnx.tnx.tnx..
i now a lot about rice!!

John Henson

Nov 6th, 2009

The steps toward Heaven. If you see an Angels they are so simple people wearing shorts and shirts, but they have wings. The garden in Heaven is just like this. Heaven is a virtual mountain above the moutain hight and it is on top of one of the Philippines moutain.


Rhodora Bande

Oct 26th, 2010

Wow, this must be one of your earliest articles. Maliliit pa yung pics mo noon. It’s interesting to see how your works evolved.

glamour venice

Jun 20th, 2012

thank you for helping me in my history reporting..:]

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