Sunday, July 14, 2013

Sanafe Lodge and Restaurant: Great place to stay in Banaue, Philippines

Banaue is the entrance to the famous rice terraces of northern Philippines and to the 8th wonder of the world, which is situated about an hour away from there. Either one can tour all the places around by doing day trips from Banaue or stay at the smaller villages. I preferred to stay at Banaue at the Sanafe Lodge and Restaurant. Below review is based on my recent experience of staying 2 nights and 3 days here.

1) The place is one of the oldest hotels in Banaue and has great location. It is situated right on the main market road and offers great views of the Banaue rice terraces and the river that flows through Banaue.

2) The lodge offers rooms that cater to various budgets from 200 PHP for a bed in a dormitory to 1,600 PHP for a deluxe room with a rice terrace view.

3) They have free wi-fi, though wi-fi tends to be painfully slow during the day and decent speed during the nights.

4) They have an in-house restaurant too, though prices can be a bit on the higher side, but if location and view is important for you, then this is the place for a meal.

5) It has got great proximity to the tourist information center, the jeepney and pedi cab stands, hawker shops, grocery shops, bus station and restaurants.

6) The owner, a Filipina lady is very helpful and guides you in the right direction even though it leads to lower revenue for her. For example, she pointed me in the right direction for cheap food and restaurants.

7) The dormitory does not come with hot shower and if you like hot showers on a cold morning, then the dormitory is not for you.

8) Except the deluxe rooms, none of the rooms come with charging points. Hence, you will have to charge your gadgets in the restaurant area.

9) The lodge also helps in arranging tours to all the popular sightseeing places.

10) If you are staying longer or if you are on a tight budget, you should ask the owner for a budget. In all probability, she will give you a discount.

The place has a great feel and comes with a great  view. The 200 PHP dormitory makes it a steal and perfect for backpackers and solo travelers. A lot of tourists like their double rooms too. As a overall package, I would definitely return to this place, though I will always eat outside to save on the costs.

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